Sometimes convincing your kid to go to swim practice requires some extra motivation. Enter the great motivator – Olympic Gold Medalist Swimmer Summer Sanders!
Well yes, you do. Mature swimmers reconcile the demands of their sport. Long hours spent at swim practice and swim meets add up to late nights and early mornings, challenging and solidifying athlete commitment. Other priorities (sleep, school work, professional obligations) must be balanced and even fit into place around swimming’s rigorous and demanding schedule.
So how do you convince a young swimmer to make this commitment?
Ginger is a tough kid and she works hard. Like many younger swimmers, her energy level compensates for some of the deficiencies in her stroke, as if sheer will was enough to propel her through the water. She applies herself during practice – and pays close attention to her coaches.
Half the time she loves going to swim practice – and the other half of the time?
She hates it. On some days it requires an outright battle to get her into the pool. “I don’t feel like going” transforms into “I hate going to swim practice” and then she really throws down the gauntlet.
“I don’t want to be on the swim team.”
Ouch. You cannot say that in our family! Her great grandfather, Adolph Kiefer, is an Olympic champion. And her mother, Stacey Kiefer, is a lifetime competitive swimmer to the bone. And let’s face it – she’s basically redeeming my sheepish competitive swimming career by allowing me to be her father.
If you don’t know Summer Sanders, then you are new to swimming. Her glowing competitive swimming achievements culminated with 4 medals in the 1992 Summer Olympics. She went on to host sports television shows and even appeared in the movie Jerry Maguire.
As it turns out, Summer was scheduled to visit the PX3 Swim Team in their hometown of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, to kick off their July 12th invitational swim meet at the RecPlex Sports Complex.
And her timing couldn’t have been better. Ginger was at the height of her summertime swimming blues. She was tired of multi-day swim meets and practices that seemed to take precedence over more pleasant summer activities.
Summer watched warm-ups and eventually gave a speech during the meet. Her message was very compelling and inspirational. She celebrated the benefits of believing in oneself and pursuing one’s dreams. If you think you can do it – you can do it.
After her speech, Summer remained at the meet, signing autographs and spending time getting to know her fans and their stories on how her achievements had touched their lives.
Ginger was charmed to meet her, and glad to hear that she knew Adolph. Perhaps there’s really something to this swimming thing that the Kiefer family will never stop talking about?
Ginger was very impressed with Summer Sanders and has since declared her goal of becoming an Olympic Swimmer. I’m not surprised that she found Summer to be so motivating. Summer’s kindness and charisma truly put her in top tier of worthy ambassadors to the sport of swimming.
She even signed Ginger’s pull buoy. How cool is that?