In its 19th year, the Grand Forks Piranhas Swim Club begins another season starting on May 2.
Karen Heric, president of the swim club, stated, “Our motto is family, fitness, fun and friends and we like to have as many young people in the community involved.”
The aim of the club is to promote individual growth, as well as good sportsmanship, friendly competitiveness and empathy towards others.
“It’s one of those sports that’s more individual as a competitive sport,” she added. “Each swimmer can make it as competitive or least competitive as they like. So they can go to swim meets if they choose, or they can just go to practices.”
From May to June, practices are Monday to Thursday afternoons, and Tuesday and Thursday mornings.
Heric noted that once school is over for summer, starting the first week of July, practices change slightly.
“We still have practices from Monday to Thursday afternoon and two swim practices Tuesday and Thursday morning, but we also add two dry-run practices Monday and Wednesday morning to switch it up a bit,” she said.
The Grand Forks Piranhas Swim Club mentors its swimmers to become coaches and remain involved with the club.
“We have kids who started swimming when they were four or five years old, who are now coaching,” she explained. “We like to mentor our coaches to keep them involved with our club, instead of them joining another club.”
“There is no cut off age, so adults can swim,” Heric stated. “Our only requirement is that swimmers can swim one length of the pool by themselves and usually that’s around age five.”
There are three adults who swim with our club, she pointed out.
To Heric, swimming is a fun way to exercise and stay healthy.
Registration is open until June 30, but practices begin on May 2.
The club develops swimmers through organized training programs and swimming events around the Kootenay region.