Monday, September 29, 2014

BSL Sprint into Fall

Walker was so proud of his siblings
Last January, Bennett began swimming for the YMCA.  It was super casual, but she grew to like it, and even competed in a couple of swim meets.  The enjoyment she had rubbed off on Preston, and both children elected to swim for the Homewood Swim Team this past summer. 

The whole environment was new to all of us, but we all LOVED it!  The kids practiced every weekday, and had swim meets almost every week.  In addition, they swam with all of their friends, so it was fun for them and they rarely complained.  It was a great way to instill a love for the sport, and they both improved a great deal over the 8 weeks.  Since we saw enjoyment, and potential with both kids, we decided to pursue a more rigorous swim team for the Fall....the Birmingham Swim League (BSL). 

The BSL has seven different teams, with four practices a week and a handful of swim meets.  It is much more competitive, but the children are learning so much more than they ever could through the YMCA swim team, so we are pleased.  Each practice offers about 15 minutes of dryland exercises, and then they hop in the pool and practice different techniques.  Usually they focus on one skill a day, it may be a particular stroke, or specific skill like diving, flip turns, breathing and streamline. 

Bennett is loving the new team, but Pres is having a more difficult time.  Initially he loved it, but I think he is tired from school and all of the changes in his little life.  Regardless, I make him go, and he is improving like Bennett.  In fact, both kids swam in the first BSL swim meet...Sprint into Fall, where there were 9 other teams competing in a variety of relays, distances and strokes.

Neither of the kids have done well with breast stroke since they began swimming (as I have learned, it is the most common stroke for someone to be disqualified), so they swam free, back and butterfly.  In addition, Bennett was enrolled in a freestyle relay with three other girls.  Though they both ended up getting disqualified for fly, their other times improved from the summer (as you can see below).  They both swim in a 8 and under age group, and the competition is stiff for both - especially Bennett since there are so many more girl swimmers.  A friend told us to keep track of their times, so we could show it to the kids and give them a goal to beat their previous time each meet.  It has certainly helped them, and it is slowly building their confidence.

Bennett25 yd Free34.6734.523332.7531.63
25 yd Back41.9341.9334.6734.7932.57
25 yd Breast--DQ--
25 yd Fly-50.22-55.65DQ
Preston25 yd Free39.2537.9735.1332.2730.91
25 yd Back  39.1733.4329.31
25 yd Breast-DQ---
25 yd Fly--38.2742.82DQ

They are back to practicing, but will be competing in their next meet the first weekend of November, so stay tuned.  We promise to take more pictures at that one.  We are so proud of our little fish!

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