How Can A Swim Coach and Their Swim Club Board Build Trust?

In the SwimSwam Podcast dive deeper into the sport you love with insider conversations about swimming. Hosted by Coleman HodgesGarrett McCaffrey, and Gold Medal Mel Stewart, SwimSwam welcomes both the biggest names in swimming that you already know, and rising stars that you need to get to know, as we break down the past, present, and future of aquatic sports.

Renata Porter, founder of, returns to the SwimSwam podcast. Renata’s a dedicated swim business expert with a focus on youth sports clubs. Her company provides actionable guidance and support helping swim clubs shift from old mindsets to running the club as the business that it is.

We’re coming up on the end of the year—that time for New Year’s resolutions. If you’re a swimming coach or a swim club board member, a great new year’s resolution would be to build more trust. The big question is how do you do that?

Today we cover these topics:

  • how roles and responsibilities play a part
  • trust and the ability to be transparent and honest
  • allowance for growth and lessons learned
  • growth and lessons balanced with accountability

If you have questions or topics you’d like for Renata to cover in future podcasts, please share them here.

Please note, Renata Porter is a SwimSwam ad partner.  We made this partnership, as we do all partnerships, to support our news division, but we also made it to gain more understanding about the challenges swimming clubs encounter.

Music: Otis McDonald

Opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the interviewed guests do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs, and viewpoints of the hosts, SwimSwam Partners, LLC and/or SwimSwam advertising partners.

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Coach MacGyver
1 year ago

The Board is there to act as a fiduciary. Recruit members who are good at this role (lawyers, MBA, financial experts.)

From there it’s the three Gs. Get on, Give, Get off.

Jeff Allen
1 year ago

The problem with boards is that they struggle with understanding their role and are not able to look past their own child. The vetting process for most teams is done last minute and ends up having new board members being friends of an existing board member.

The role of the board is to enable the head coach and coaching staff to do the job they were hired to do. To find ways to get the resources needed to provide the safe, fun, challenging environment that is going to created and facilitate a successful program.

Vetting is a year-round process that should focus on the parents and volunteers that are engaged in the program not because they have to… Read more »

1 year ago

Thanks for this. I’ve been on a board with a dysfunctional relationship with the coach and it was beyond painful. The coach would pound his fist on the table and scream at certain members during meetings. At the same time, the coach believed and led other parents and team members to believe that the board was against the coach. Simple things like “we need to have more money coming in each month than we are spending” were met with anger from the coach as well as parents who wanted to know why were not supporting the coach. I have never been more relieved to be done with that board.

I wish I had known about your services when I was… Read more »

About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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