While swim meets and practices are largely on hold worldwide right now due to the effects of COVID-19, BSN Sports still wants to highlight and celebrate swim teams from around the country. This week’s BSN Sports Swim Team of the Week is Aqua Swift Aquatics of Boerne, TX. Aqua Swift’s mission is to be “dedicated to providing the highest quality of aquatic based programing to develop the physical skills and abilities of its participants while reinforcing positive life long health habits of its athletes and staff.”
BSN Sports Team Ambassador Jessica Hardy spoke with Aqua Swift Head Coach Jason Schmeltzer to get his take on what makes this team special, as well as some of his thoughts on coaching in general.
One of things that stands out about Aqua Swift is how the team has worked to develop relationships with other teams in the area, including summer league and high school teams.
In the past few years Aquaswift has developed a great relationship with other area non-club swim teams, especially the local high school teams. The kids are able to practice before and after school with many of their teammates. Many of our high school swimmers also help with our younger pre competitive and summer league swimmers. We have a real sense of community with our families both in and out of the pool.
Those relationships with other teams has helped Aqua Swift develop swimmers at every level to achieve their full potential.
Many of our swimmers come to us from the city summer league team and want to develop their skills beyond what can be picked up during the short summer season. Besides running a year round club team we also provide weekend clinics in the spring to jump start summer league. I really enjoy watching the swimmers improve their technique and as their confidence builds they become even more passionate about the sport.
Their reputation for successful development means that the team has grown over the years. That’s obviously a great sign for a program, but something that’s also posed a challenge for Schmeltzer as he’s had to adapt to the growing size of the team.
I love coaching all levels of swimmers but as we’ve grown I’ve had to add staff to make sure all levels are adequately covered. Even though my staff does a fantastic job I feel like I’m letting some of the kids down when I can’t always be at every meet because some weekends the older kids are at different meets than the younger ones.
Still, just like swimmers grow and develop through challenges, Schmeltzer discussed how he’s grown as as coach over the years.
Over the years I’ve learned how different the journey is for every swimmer and family. Some swimmers enjoy being on the team for the sense of team and the social aspect while others are extremely serious and competitive and it’s important to make it a great experience for all no matter what their goals are. I also have many kids that I lose different parts of the season to other sports which used to bother me but now I have kids in water polo, track and cross country and even going to the Olympic training center for a modern day pentathlon program and have learned to embrace what it does for the kids overall.
Schmeltzer’s favorite coaching memory really captures what Aqua Swift Aquatics, and really the whole sport of swimming, is all about.
Last season our team hosted the Jr STAGS end of season championship meet for almost 1000 swimmers in our LSC. Our team went all out to make it a great meet for the kids participating and even brought in Sara Gibson to do clinics for the kids and coaches. My dad flew in and got to see the event and even volunteered to help out. It was the first time in my 20 years of coaching he saw me on the deck. The kids got a kick out of seeing my father and I working together and It was special for me to show him how great the program and support is here at Aquaswift.