Swim­mers make a big splash

Rutherglen Reformer - - Motors - Mur­ray Spooner

This week’s Re­former Club of the Week is the Ruther­glen Am­a­teur Swim­ming Club.

Re­cruit­ment has been a prob­lem for the club in the past but they are start­ing to build a healthy mem­ber­ship.

Mem­bers train at the pool on Glen­side Drive, East­field and par­tic­i­pate in land train­ing at Trin­ity High.

We spoke to as­sis­tant head coach, Fiona Lappin about the club’s re­cent suc­cess. “The club has ex­isted since the early 1960s but lit­tle is known about those times to­day. The 1990s were a strug­gle for us and a lot of mem­bers were lost.

In 2002 the club started re­build­ing and it has slowly de­vel­oped into one of the fore­most age group clubs not only in South La­nark­shire but in the West of Scot­land.”

“We have a great track record of de­vel­op­ing swim­mers to district level and have had district cham­pi­ons and cur­rently hold a num­ber of age group records.

In the Clyde Coast Mini League last year we were third be­hind City of Glas­gow and In­ver­clyde which is well be­yond what one would ex­pect of a club our size.

We have had swim­mers who have pro­gressed up to be­come Scot­tish Na­tional Age Group cham­pi­ons and we hope they will move on to big­ger and bet­ter things. We also have swim­mers who com­pete in open wa­ter events and again we have had Scot­tish age group cham­pi­ons as well as a re­lay where we came third.”

“This varies de­pend­ing on age and squad of the swim­mer. Cur­rently our top swim­mers have six or seven ses­sions plus land work, mainly af­ter­noons and evenings. We only have an early ses­sion on a Satur­day.”

“Life in a swim­ming club is al­ways a lit­tle fraught. Our big­gest prob­lems is al­ways re­cruit­ment and re­ten­tion of­ten due to swim­mers and par­ents mind­sets. It is not all about com­pe­ti­tion and win­ning but learn­ing skills both for swim­ming and life, de­vel­op­ing young peo­ple and build­ing self con­fi­dence.”

“There are al­ways lots of up and com­ing events, but we are cur­rently in the Clyde Coast league sea­son and ev­ery­one is ex­cited. The fo­cus at the mo­ment for many is the Scot­tish Na­tional Age Groups at the be­gin­ning of April. Swim­mers are anx­iously col­lect­ing qual­i­fy­ing times and we cur­rently have six that are likely to be go­ing. Our own next big event is our own RAS­CALS meet which is held at Bell­shill in May.”

“Our club is a fam­ily and we know ev­ery­one in­di­vid­u­ally . We work closely with swim­mers and par­ents to help our swim­mers achieve in swim­ming and life be­yond their dreams.

Achiev­ing your goals. Learn­ing what win­ning re­ally is. It is not just about com­ing first but that’s a fan­tas­tic feel­ing too.”

“There are those who work tire­lessly and those who think they do enough. Enough is never enough. You have to do what it takes.”

“If you have com­pleted the South La­nark­shire Learn to Swim scheme you are au­to­mat­i­cally ac­cepted into the club. If you are not sure about this, or learned else­where, go to the club desk at East­field on a Tues­day or Thurs­day night and we will see how we can help you to the level you wish to achieve. Check our web­site www.rasc. org.uk or come and speak to any of our coaches.”

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