The South West Region 1 hosted a development camp for 34 talented athletes, from swimming clubs across the South West Region, off the back of WA Country Championships this week. The camp was an opportunity for South West athletes and coaches to experience coaching and athlete development opportunities they don't usually get access to and to increase their awareness of athlete pathway opportunities for swimmers.
The South West Region Squad attended the two-day camp which included a specialist swim clinic lead by Westside Christchurch's Will Greenwood and Kwinana Swimming Club's Lucky Weerakkody. Three South West coaches Andrew Sexton (Busselton), Hjojin Sun (Mandurah) and Taarna Cam (Australind) participated in the Clinic as a professional development opportunity.
The athletes and coaches travelled to the Formidable Strength & Conditioning gym in the afternoon for a workshop and practical session with Ryan Evernden on the importance of Strength and Conditioning for swimmers. Ryan is a former South West Region 1 Squad athlete, like the athletes at the camp, who was able to share his experience as a South West athlete and National finalist and what he learned as an athlete coming from Regional WA.
A highlight of the camp was an after-dinner Athlete Talk with Olympian, Commonwealth Games Medallist and 400m IM Australian record holder, Jennifer Reilly and Open Water Champion, Kyle Lee. Both Jennifer and Kyle are Country athletes and shared highlights of their pathway from Country swimming to Olympic representation.
The final day of the camp included a tour of the Western Australian Institute of Sport (WAIS) hosted by WAIS athlete, Mia Gordon, who showed athletes around the facility and gave an insight into the experience of a WAIS athlete. Part of the tour included observing WAIS swimmers completing a training session.
Thank you to the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries for funding the camp and South West Region 1 for organising the camp. What an incredible opportunity for Athletes and Coaches to experience the pathway opportunities for swimmers first-hand.