What do the New Albany Bulldog swimmers do in the off season? They swim. PACE (PaceSetter Aquatic Club) and RAC (River Side Aquatic Club) are AAU swim clubs that allow swimmers to put in the work needed to progressively get better during the offseason.
Sophomore Samantha Condra participates in Pace (PaceSetter Aquatics) over the summer to improve her swimming for the bulldogs.
“They are club swim teams that people can do outside of high school season,” Condra said. “I do it so I know I am preparing myself for the high school season. It helps me stay motivated over the summer so I’m ready to get back in the pool for New Albany.”
Much like AAU basketball or club volleyball these clubs are designed to keep swimmers focused and in shape for their upcoming swim seasons.
“I wanted to get better for high school season,” Condra said. “I wanted to get really good results at conference and sectionals so I turned to Pace to keep me in the pool all year round.” Condra said.
High school sports call for great athletes, so working hard is important. Although, it’s hard to figure out exactly what is needed to be the best you can be. Condra talks about how she got just what she needed to get better.
“Pace has really made me a better swimmer because the coaches know what they are doing,” Condra said. “The trainers and coaches really help us with our all around swimming. It’s also really laid back. A lot of my friends do it so I get to hang out with them, and when it comes to the swimming we are all really focused and trying to get better.”
It has made Condra a better swimmer and she encourages young swimmers to join as well.
“It’s pretty important to start early. I didn’t start early and I think it would have helped me out a lot, and I wish I would have started earlier,” Condra said. “This gives kids a head start so they can be really good when they join the high school team in the future.”
Senior Duncan Manger also takes advantage of the summer swimming clubs, but with RAC.
“RAC practices are different from high school practices,” Manger said. “There isn’t a real stress on getting practices in before meets, so that leaves us swimmers with a lot of time to work on perfecting our strokes and turns.”
Manger believes that these clubs help kids in other ways than just the swimming.
“I think that young swimmers should join these teams to build self-confidence and to be a more competitive person as well as a good teammate/ friend.”
It was not Manger’s choice to join a club swim team but he sure is glad that he did.
“I never really had a choice on joining one or not, but I’m glad that my mother had myself and my siblings do it,” Manger said. “It brings us together and if there is ever something we need help with we can all resort back to swimming as our own special place to think.”