Growing up “fishlike”
Swimming will always be a cornerstone of who I am. At the age of seven I joined the local swim team and excelled in the freestyle and backstroke events. The reality of bringing home a medal at the YMCA State Championships that first year was enough to get me hooked. I dedicated myself to the sport for the next eleven years. As a result of quality coaching and exceptional skill-based training I experienced the excitement of competing in the Ohio high-school state championships, winning conference titles, and setting high-school records.
My most influential swimming experiences developed under the direction of two prominent Total Immersion head coaches, Gary Fahey and Gene Mills. Their extensive knowledge of the sport, cutting-edge technique training, and thought-provoking practices were the impetus in my desire to succeed and subsequently coach years later. Despite our less-than-ideal training conditions; a pool that’s water was murky at best, temperatures that fluctuated daily, and air that hung low and thick, our coaches taught us how to find inspiration in ourselves and turn weaknesses into competitive strengths. The “Last Resort,” as we called it, became our experimental lab for developing new techniques, drills and kinesthetic awareness. Most importantly, we were encouraged to work with our teammates daily. We tested, analyzed and creatively communicated with each other new ideas –constantly in pursuit of a competitive advantage. Never settling with “good enough” our team soon dominated the local swim scene.
Solving swimming mysteries one student at a time
At the age of fourteen I volunteered as an assistant coach on our local summer rec. team. Using the core principles of self-discipline, responsibility and patience we explored innovative solutions to solving some of swimming’s most puzzling questions. The following year I experimented with these non-traditional training techniques privately, offering lessons to children that required more specific, goal-oriented instruction. By the third summer my parent’s backyard pool had become the local hub for summer swimming lessons. Happy children and pleased parents spread the word quickly and it wasn’t long before I was averaging 45 hours per week of private lessons and loving every minute of it.
After graduating from Miami University in 2004 with a degree in architecture, I announced my profound desire and dedication to swimming and pursued a full-time career in coaching. Collaborating with Total Immersion’s founder, Terry Laughlin, I was invited to become a licensed instructor of their internationally renowned training techniques and assumed the position of Regional Director in the Midwest. From Seattle to Dallas from New York to San Juan, I’ve worked side-by side with some of the nation’s best coaches while exchanging ideas and continually learning unique methods for improvement.
Discover your hidden talents!
To have discovered a career path so early in life that I can embrace with enthusiasm each day is very fortunate. It’s exciting and rewarding to work with swimmers of all ages and ability levels; students from non-competitive backgrounds, multi-sport athletes, adults with water phobia and children just learning their ABC’s. I find the teacher-student symbiotic relationship enlightening; continually awakened and constantly intrigued by the various learning styles of individuals. There is never a shortage of new questions and coaching challenges, however, with well-guided swimming advice, a bit of intuition and a willingness to investigate together we will find uniquely creative solutions to solving YOUR swimming obstacles.