The Pikes are getting fast.
“For our younger swimmers we’ve seen lots of improvement. Just in times and ability to swim the stroke and ability to ensure that they do it properly,” said Pikes coach Kara DeClark. “In terms of our older swimmers, we’ve seen lots of progression in aerobic and endurance stand points. We’ve seen great results at meets so far.”
Those results include dropping times, especially Anders Say and Ryan McMillan. The pair combined to drop nearly 10 seconds from their 100-metre freestyle.
In Kelowna earlier this month several Pikes dropped times. Of the 86 swims, 74 were best times, which DeClark said is really good. Nearly every swim achieved a new best time, while many competed in their first meets.
This weekend the Pikes host their lone meet of the season at the Penticton Community Centre. DeClark wants the younger swimmers improving their turns, and starts and making sure they are executing their individual medley turns in time for it. For the older swimmers, their focus is on regionals in Kamloops Aug. 5 to 6.
Related: Penticton Pikes getting better times
DeClark is starting to do video work with the swimmers so they can see how they look under and above water. As she said, getting coach’s feedback isn’t always the best.
“When they are able to see how they are swimming in the water, it’s really great for them to see that,” she said, adding it helps the swimmers speed the process up of what they need to change. “We have a very short 16-week season. We need to narrow in on those small parts really quickly.”
DeClark has enjoyed her first season as Pikes coach. DeClark is a graduate of the University of Lethbridge and has previously coached the Ladysmith Orcas and Nanaimo Riptides. DeClark said being around the Pikes has been a positive experience as the swimmers are energetic.
“Every time I come to practice it’s awesome to be around the kids,” she said, adding that they want to get better.
DeClark is assisted by former Pike and KISU swimmer Simon Paisley.