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High school swimmers train in outdoor pools, hope for fall season

EGR Aquatics Waves training at Kent Country Club
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Posted at 7:52 AM, Aug 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-10 07:52:40-04
High school swimmers train in outdoor pools, hope for fall season

The East Grand Rapids Aquatics Waves have been back in the pool for about two months, but most of the athletes are not used to the three months off they had prior.

“It has been really difficult," Sophie Williams, a junior swimmer at East Grand Rapids said. "Pools closing we were unable to be in the water. I think all of us kind of did all the exercise that we could that didn't involve any pool or any facility that we were used to using but that has been really tough especially swimming can't really do that at home.”

The Waves are a year-round swim program and while indoor pools remain closed, they have been able to get back to work using outdoor pools.

"It's been really nice," Becca Burrows a senior swimmer at Grand Rapids Christian said. "My mom told me, we were one of the only teams in the area that got back in the water and I was just wow, I can't imagine what other people are feeling right now and I'm just super grateful to be able to be in the water.

The club is doing everything it can to be safe.

Masks are worn coming in and leaving the pool area, each athlete has a symptom tracker, and they are only allowing three swimmer per lane.

While it's not the way these swimmers are used to doing it, they say it's not all bad.

“It’s actually been really fun to get back in like this," Reese Hartmann, a senior swimmer at East Grand Rapids said. "Because when you are in the middle (of the pool) you get more turns and I think that is more fun sometimes just to work on your turns when you are in the middle."

Girls high school season starts Wednesday with practice outside. The uncertainty of a season actually happening has understandably caused some nerves.

“It’s our senior year and this is the one that we are looking forward to," Burrows said. "You just don’t know what’s going to happen, I’m trying to stay positive it is hard.”

“Worse comes to worse we can extend swimming outside," Williams added. "Best case scenario indoor pools open but we are not really sure with that so luckily we have the first two weeks outside so hopefully that can still go.”

It is conceivable that early season competitions could take place outdoors but because of the weather indoor pools will have to reopen to have a full season.