Saturday, April 5, 2014

For Parents, And Coaches and Swimmers as Well

For parents –

Would you be able to support your child in competitive swimming if there were no times given?

What about if there were times but no places announced?

One or the other makes it competitive; are both needed?

You know the values swimming teaches. The list is endless and you usually nod your head affirmatively when asked if you feel they – the values – are worth it. And yet…if your young one doesn’t hit a best time on a somewhat regular basis do you begin to wonder if “it is worth it”…the sacrifices, the time, the money, the “fill in the blank”?

We are at the annual Far Western Age Group Championships this weekend and you can see the evidence of these questions on the faces of the parents.

It is akin to the educational process. Taking tests are an important indicator of how well a student is learning (learning what is a whole ‘nother subject!). Colleges use those test scores to determine admissions, in large part since that is the accepted norm. Yet what is the real value of higher education?

We have our own opinion about these questions and possible answers but after watching some parents in action – supporting their children – we thought it would be valuable to ask the questions out loud.

Coaches and swimmers can go through the same exercise. It is an exercise in self-discovery. Our assertion is that is a valuable exercise indeed.

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