Crowded, steamy pools have become second homes on most weekends. The lanes overcome with energetic swimmers while the bleachers are filled by encouraging parents. I have gradually grown accustomed to the yelling, and the mixed smells of chlorine; as I dive in, I truly feel at home.
At six, I took my first swim lesson at the YMCA ;My parents needed me to learn to swim s we are surrounded by water. I have never been fearful of the water. I loved playing in the pool, the tub, the ocean or any place that water was. I was so excited when I graduated swim lesson and was asked to join the swim team just a few months before I turned 7 years old.
Looking back it is inconceivable that I have been on a swim team for 10 years. Participating on a team made me realize that swimming exists as both an individual and a team sport. Creating personal bonds with special people who love to do the same thing helps when you have to get through that last grueling set at practice. The ties that are made are so powerful that I can now consider my team as my family. It has made me understand that loyalty and friendship are two key things in life that I cannot neglect. I am very thankful for my supportive peers and patient, demanding coaches. I feel that it is important for me to share my knowledge with those around me. There is not a day when I would not go out of my way to help a peer with their technique or help teach someone the proper way to do a flip-turn.
The discipline it takes to commit to swimming and to push yourself through tough workouts improves the ability to commit to schoolwork, and gives time to catch up on elusive ideas. Swimming has taught me that hurdles can be overcome and dedication is the root of success. I can use the will to succeed to excel in classes. If faced with a demanding assignment, I already have the discipline from countless pool practices to help me through. And, because of my swimming aptitude, I can help the college swim team compete. As I mature mentally, physically and emotionally, swimming continues to form me into the person I am today.