In Reflection: CAL Swimmers looking back at 2016

It was a busy year for us. We have sent an Olympian to Brazil, broke personal bests at the FINA World Short Course, won UAAP individual and team Championships, added more SEA Age medals to our shelf along with more meet records and to top it all off, a new team has been added to our CAL family. All the success the school has attained this year can not compare to the lessons that all swimmers and coaches have learned throughout the year that molded us into becoming better at what we do and have a better understanding of the situations that we have faced this past year. One important thing that we can take from 2016 is that the process of success takes time. A few of our swimmers shares with us the lessons they’ve learned for this year and it is enlightening to know that our CAL swimmers continue to grow to become better and are eager to learn more.

1Vincent Dy of Celebrity Rapids shares, “One of the positive experiences that happened in the past year was being able to participate in the UAAP Swimming Competition which was one of my goals that year. This experience did not only help me with my swimming aspirations but it also gave me the chance to bond with my teammates and really feel the essence of being part of a team.”

Gabby Velasco
of Galaxy Starships Swim Club, who’s had a great year shares, “In 2016 one of the many positive swimming experiences that had happened was that we were able to learn how to prevent and cure our injuries. This helped me in a positive way
because I learned how to overcome pain which had lead me to improving my times.”
 Teamwork and leadership are skills that we are proud to have taken advantage of for 2016 and we include in our training in producing respected student
athletes. Coming together especially when times get rough not only helps one individual but it creates a chain reaction with others. We can say that the CAL team understands that positivity is contagious and we plan to keep it that way.

Raegan Gavino
of Ayala Harpoons Swim Club profoundly shares, “The coaches of CAL help reassure me that the process is leading me to the right places. When things get rough and I feel like I’m not doing good enough in training, the coaches are there to help me figure out what to do differently, and how to tweak my strokes. But most importantly, my CAL teammates are there to cheer me on. When the set gets tough and everyone’s struggling, we all cheer for each other because it’s the biggest support we can offer at the moment. ”

2Another wonderful insight comes from Lorenzo Abanilla from the Village Sports Club Sailfish, ” CAL has taught me to push myself no matter how life out of the pool can get to you. To think about the present and enjoy the process. There are days when swimmers
would slack off in training but seeing your teammate push himself to the limit, affects the mindset and attitude of the others. This made me realize that teamwork also dwells within each person, the initiative to get up early for training and do your best, to do your swim down’s properly, affects the team’s atmosphere and habits. If i am successful by doing this then can i say i have grown to become a better teammate and person.”

Apart from the experiences and lessons they’ve realized in their own the past year, we also asked them what their plans are this year and these answers make the CAL optimistic for the years to come.

Armand Pierre Chan from QC Buccaneers states, “Swimming has changed me as a person shaping me up to become a better version of myself by making me more: disciplined, respectful and collaborative. This year, I will be polishing myself as a person being disciplined and following the rules or instructions given to me outside the pool, being respectful by greeting others and being humble when i win and finally being collaborative by supporting others in what they do.”

Developmental hopeful Juaquin Arenas from Rising Atlantis Swim club happily shares, “What I will do to be a better swimmer is go to training more than last year. I will also put more effort while I’m swimming so it will feel like a competition everyday. What I will do to be a better teammate is to be positive so I can cheer for my teammates while they are swimming so they might be motivated.”

All these great things we’ve heard are a product of tremendous teamwork and amicable leadership by the staff to keep the CAL family growing strong. We continue to be grateful and are always humbled when priceless moments and lessons that have been shared and continue to experience by the CAL swimmers. 2016 ensured growth in our swimmers which do not just show with their performance in the water but through their strength in character as well. And because of this, 2017 seems brighter already.

By: Coach Marichi Gandionco, Head Coach. Rising Atlantis Swim Club.

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