Bonner Springs Swim Club looks to continue growth
Youth program hopes to capitalize on recent success of BSHS programs
Steady improvement by the Bonner Springs High School swimming programs — including success at the state championships — has shown local swimmers that it’s possible to compete at a high level in the sport.
The Bonner Springs Swim Club hopes the high school program’s success will help spark more interest in its program and the sport will continue to grow.
Having the Bonner Springs Family YMCA facilities right next to BSHS and Clark Middle School doesn’t hurt the club’s efforts to recruit more students into the pool.
“It’s a real nice partnership because you’ve got a great facility to do your dry land workouts, and the water is right there available to us with the (starting) blocks,” Bonner Springs Swim Club head coach Debbie King said. “We’ve just got everything you need to get a good workout as a swimmer.”
The club welcomes swimmers ages 5-18, and all levels of ability are accepted. King said she hopes the swim club can be a place not only for active athletes, but also for kids who simply want to get a workout and live healthier lives.
“I think it offers a lot for kids that other sports don’t hit it for them,” she said. “It just not the connection, whereas water is a great all-around sport for anybody.”
A coach for 10 years with BSSC, King still enjoys seeing her swimmers learn the limits of their bodies and continue to push that level.
“I love seeing the kids succeed,” she said. “I love seeing the kids feel like they’ve given their best and they actually get to see their best performance. Just seeing them excited about what they’ve accomplished — and it is their accomplishment. No matter what I do on the deck, it’s their accomplishment in the water.”
Swimming also can be a great alternative for other high school athletes looking to expand their cardiovascular and muscular levels, King said.
King says she sees athletes all the time that come to her program who think they are strong. But once they have a few days in the pool, they realize they aren’t as strong as they thought.
“It’s a great sport that helps cross-train the other kids that are into football, basketball or whatever else,” King said.
The swim club is year-round, but when the season is in full swing, the coaches hope the swimmers can get in at least two tournaments every month.
BSSC meet Monday through Thursday at the Bonner Springs Family YMCA. The novice practice is from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. The orange and black squads are from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Usually the teams will try to swim between 5,000 and 7,000 yards each practice.
For more information, visit the Swim Club’s website at bonnerspringsswimclub.org.