From soccer player, to student, to national team athlete, to cook – no title has ever been quite as important to me as that of Aquabelles swimmer. I attribute so much of my success in Synchro and beyond to being surrounded by powerful female role models during my most formative years.
My five years of training with the Calgary Aquabelles gave me world-class coaching and incredibly talented teammates to learn with and be inspired by. The caliber of the organization helped shape me as an athlete and allowed me to achieve goals such as winning National titles and competing internationally on National Teams. Beyond this however, being a member of the Aquabelles gave me the opportunity to develop habits of diligence, hard work, leadership, communication, and the continual strive for excellence. These skills gave me a foundation as a well-rounded athlete to pursue higher education and a career as a student athlete at Stanford University.
Calgary Aquabelles shaped the person I am today. It is through my experiences with the Aquabelles that I developed many of the key skills that are at the heart of my personal and professional success. As a former Aquabelles swimmer, the program and the coaches gave me the tools to tackle challenges head on, persevere when times get tough, push beyond my self-imposed limits, be a good teammate and friend, win and lose graciously, and effectively juggle the demands of life, work and family. As a former Aquabelles coach, I learned how to build a team, how to inspire and motivate others, and how to help my swimmers recognize and realize their potential. Now, as a parent of a current Calgary Aquabelles swimmer, I am thrilled to watch my daughter learn and apply these same life skills as she navigates her way through her teenage years.
The Aquabelles gave Nevada the opportunity to excel at the sport she loved! Because of her fantastic experience with the Aquabelles she was able to secure a synchronized swimming scholarship to a NCAA Division 1 University where she has been able to compete for the last 4 years. Perhaps most importantly, Nevada developed life-long friendships from her time with the Aquabelles. The Calgary Aquabelles, in a very meaningful way, assisted Nevada in becoming a highly confident and competent person, excelling not only in the sport she loves but socially and academically.
Sport can teach many things to children and youth as they mature. As a member of The Calgary Aquabelles, our daughter became more than just a competitive athlete. The skills she developed both in and out of the pool served her tremendously as she grew into a very successful young woman. She learned to compete for excellence. She learned time management as she balanced the rigors of training with a challenging academic commitment. She learned respect – for coaches, officials, chaperones, teammates and fellow competitors. She learned the value of hard work, perseverance, cooperation and teamwork and she learned how to win or lose with dignity.
My daughter, Emily, attended an AQB camp when she was 7 and she begged us to let her go into the 10 and under program. 14 years later, Emily retired from Synchro. There were certainly lots of ups and downs, victories, disappointments, laughs and tears during her swimming career, but overall, I feel that Synchro shaped Emily into the positive and confident young lady she is today. She swam with many of the same girls for years and that can be a challenge for teenage girls. However, Synchro is the ultimate team sport as the goal is perfection together as a group of 8. The Aquabelles taught her the value of being on a team. A life skill which is invaluable. Oh – and she also learned how to swim!