Hawaii Hires Alumnus Nick Folker as New Assistant Coach

The University of Hawaii has hired program alumnus Nick Folker as its new assistant coach. He will join the swimming & diving staff under first year head coach Elliot Ptasnik, who took over the program this offseason when Dan Schemmel left to become the new head coach at Stanford.

Folker swam collegiately at Hawaii from 1998 through 2001 when he was a 12-time NCAA All-American. From 1997 through 2004, he was a member of the South African National Team, including racing at the 2000 Olympic Games as a member of the country’s 400 free and medley relays.

After his swimming career wrapped up, he served as the ‘director of aquatic performance’ at Cal from 2004 through 2013 where he worked with both the swimming & water polo programs as a strength and dryland coach. There he was a part of 7 NCAA Championship teams, including 3 with the Cal women’s swimming & diving team and 2 with the Cal men’s swimming & diving team. Since 2013, he’s worked with the strength & conditioning company that he co-founded BridgeAthletic as well as with Physmodo.

“Nick is a University of Hawaii alumni and swam for head coach Sam Freas who was a revolutionary sprint coach,” said head coach Elliot Ptasnik. “Between his experience as a student-athlete at UH, Olympic athlete, and director of aquatic performance at Cal, he is one of, if not the best in the world at connecting strength work to fast swimming. This is an incredibly huge addition for our squad, and we are extremely happy and proud to have Nick back in Hawaii.”

Folker joins a staff that includes 4th-year assistant swimming coach Marcus Guttmann, 2nd-year graduate assistant Ivy Martin, head diving coach Mike Brown, and assistant diving coach Anita Rossing.



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3 years ago

Good hire! What has Nick been doing since he left Cal?

Ol' Longhorn
Reply to  Superfan
3 years ago

” Since 2013, he’s worked with the strength & conditioning company that he co-founded BridgeAthletic and with Physmodo.”

Reply to  Superfan
3 years ago

Read the article 🙂

Reply to  Heyitsme
3 years ago

But no coaching? Is this new job coaching sprinters or just the strength and conditioning part? My point was/is when has he last “coached”?

Reply to  Superfan
3 years ago

2013 Cal, then started his company

Scott Stubblefield
Reply to  Superfan
3 years ago

Dude – not sure who you are but Nick Is some one person any parent would be thrilled to have as a coach in any capacity. He coaches swimming, strength, and most importantly life. He was a powerful influence on our son Seth! We love Nick. You hide behind a user name! I will willingly tell you who I am! Great hire!

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Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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