Swim training in the winter? Without an indoor pool? Well, that is exactly what has been taking place since September for the Golden Dolphins Swim Club. Led by Athletic Trainer and Personal Fitness guru, Traci Schuck from ATP Fitness, the swim team has been working hard on their dry land training in order to better prepare themselves for the upcoming season.
“This is the first season we are trying the dry land training throughout the winter for our swim team. Without an appropriate indoor pool, this is the only way our team can stay in swim shape. This being our first year at this, we are curious to see how the winter training will benefit the athletes come the start of the season in May,” President of the Golden Dolphins Swim Club, Janne Arlt said of the concept.
The training is intense and very much sport specific. Traci’s strict regime includes a bounty of core strengthening exercises; it is a strong core that benefits any athlete, especially a swimmer. Traci also focuses on flexibility, plyometrics (leg/jump training), speed and agility.
“Swimming utilizes the entire body in ways other sports do not. In swimming, all power comes from the core, so we do focus a lot on that specific area of the body,” Schuck said of the importance of a strong core.
Her training takes place twice a week at the Lady Grey Elementary School and typically brings in 10-17 athletes to each seminar. The children appear elated at the chance to learn from Traci, and why not.
Traci’s background, besides being born and raised in Golden, is nearly as impressive as the shape some of these athletes are in. She is currently working at wrapping up her degree in Human Kinetics, and has high-level sports training all over her resume.
“I have worked with many high-level sports teams, including the Golden Rockets. I’ve also worked for the Powell River Kings and the Brooks Bandits,” Schuck explained modestly about her experience.
It is this type of quality experience that gives the Golden Dolphins some solid optimism and the belief that they are progressing as athletes.
“I have to be hard on the team sometimes, but they seem to enjoy themselves…they keep coming back. I think the team can definitely see that they are getting stronger, and they have to like that,” Schuck said.
“Traci runs a great program, a great workout and the kids really seem to like it,” Arlt added.
Most of the swim team is simply athletic in nature; many on the team play numerous sports throughout the year. It is this reason that makes Traci’s job a little easier, but the young bunch does have some to learn; lessons that can be taught by their energetic trainer.
“I am planning on doing a nutrition class with the team before the start of the season. This way they will be able to learn about how to fuel their bodies properly before or during meets. It is also going to help them stay healthy, as they grow older. In general, they’ll be able to take care of their bodies better,” Schuck described.
As the swim season quickly approaches, the team will continue doing much of the same, and even a little more. Traci is planning to add a third training day each week after Spring Break, focusing exclusively on core strengthening. It is something the swim team will surely accept with open arms, as their progression is clearly evident.
“At the end of the day, I hope the entire team does very well this year. I know they are aware of how far they all have come, and I hope they continue on with all their hard work,” Schuck concluded.