May 302015

We had a great open water swim at Aquatic Park today. 16 Swymnuts made the journey to brave water temps around 55 and air temp around 50! Check out the photos on our SmugMug page which you can find here. Meanwhile, here are a few pictures to get you started:

Awesome shot of the SwimFit Swymnuts: Jules, Mike, Suzie, Dave, Susie and Nicole

Awesome shot of the SwimFit Swymnuts: Jules, Mike, Suzie, Dave, Susie and Nicole

Cathy pointing out where she saw a large line of pelicans flying by

Cathy pointing out where she saw a large line of pelicans flying by

Clarke, Mary, Cathy, Jane and Mike all smiles pre-event

Clarke, Mary, Cathy, Jane and Mike all smiles pre-event

Mary and Jane all done and all smiles!

Mary and Jane all done and all smiles!

Mike running in and feeling good!

Mike running in and feeling good!

Nicole demonstrating that taking off the wetsuit isn't easy either!

Nicole demonstrating that taking off the wetsuit isn’t easy either!

Suzie has wrapping up her swim (the day before her birthday!)

Suzie has wrapping up her swim (the day before her birthday!)

Terri is still debating...Really coaches?

Terri is still debating…Really coaches?

Apr 242015

Mimi WMimi Willard, 61, is our lone Swymnut at the 2015 USMS Short Course Yards Nationals in San Antonio. She is off to a great start, landing a 5th place in the 1000 free in a 14:42.49. That is a 3 second drop from her swim two weeks ago. New to the 1000 free, Mimi is already showing a rock-solid steadiness as she held sub 1:30s for all the middle 100s. Way to rock it Mimi!

Update 4-24-15 11:15 AM. Mimi swam the 200 Free with a new personal best of 2:39.02 breaking that 2:40 barrier and bettering her time by 2 seconds. She placed 13th our of 22 in a very competitive field. She has 100 back left later today.

Update 4-24-15 4:15 PM. Mimi completed her swimming trifecta with her 100 Backstroke at Nationals. She set another personal best and placed 12th with a time of 1:27.88. Congratulations to Mimi on a very successful Nationals (she could only swim Thursday and Friday at Nationals due to prior obligations). Absolutely terrific results demonstrating that her hard work with Ultra Short Race Pace Training definitely paid off.


Apr 172015

Swymnut Masters is eager to assist U.S. Masters Swimming in its endeavor to reduce the number of drownings here in the U.S. Did you know that approximately 37% of adults in the U.S. do not know how to swim? To combat this, U.S. Masters Swimming has developed an Adult Learn to Swim program and they are working with individual States and Congress to dedicate every April as Learn to Swim Month. While CA has not yet adopted this declaration, we hope they do soon!

We want to do our part and it is our hope that in 2016 Swymnut Masters is able to embrace this ALTS program and bring free swim lessons to adults in our Community in the spring and summer of 2016. We’ll be looking for swimmer volunteers to work one-on-one with those taking lessons. Our goal is to run a 4-week series with two half-hour sessions each week for a participant. With the possibility of grant funding, we hope to provide our participants with a swim snorkel, along with a swim cap and t-shirt celebrating their step to overcome their fear of water and maybe even fall in love with it like we have!

Here is a video from Growing Bolder profiling the work being done to help save lives.

And here is information on the U.S. Masters Swimming website on their ALTS program. along with a public service announcement starring Mysty Hyman on ALTS.

Apr 052015

Woo Hoo! It is happening! Swymnut Masters is expanding operations to the Indian Valley Pool (Novato) on Monday, April 20th. You’ll find our IVC schedule posted on our website page here. This is a very exciting time for Swymnut Masters. Our land based operations for our team are only two years old this month and we are blessed to have workouts at three locations – Lucas Valley, the Marin JCC and now Indian Valley.

Thank you to Warren Lager for opening the doors to our team there at the Indian Valley Pool. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to continue our quest to offer a strong adult aquatics fitness program to the community in San Rafael and Novato. I began my coaching there with Marin Pirates Masters in 2009-2011 and the chance to return there and build that swim community back to its former glory is definitely a dream come true.

Don’t forget we have a team party at Coach Cokie’s house on Saturday, April 25th. We’ll celebrate our team’s birthday and launching our IVC operations. Bring a beverage, an appetizer, or just yourself. Be prepared to celebrate!


Oct 202014

15 NUTS competed at the 2014 Pac Masters Short Course Meters Championships in Walnut Creek the weekend of October 11-12. We had some GREAT individual swims and super fast team-record-setting relays. Our 15 members were comprised of 12 females, 3 males. Our gals took 4th place overall and our team placed 7th overall. This is truly amazing especially given the fact that very few of our swimmers competed in the max number of events. The weather was perfect with temps in the mid 70s to low 80s. Check out our results!

2014 Pac SCM Champs Summary

2014 All Meet Results

Sep 292014

USMS has bestowed some pretty awesome awards on two of our coaches here at Swymnuts. At the United States Aquatic Sports annual convention in Jacksonville, Florida (Sept 17-21. 2014), Coach Susie Powell was awarded the USMS Fitness Award for her work with both Swymnuts and SwimFit. In the presentation, it was noted that Susie has quite the creative flare in her coaching style, with fun and outrageous “themes” to her workouts often filled with props, toys and zany sets. She’s also known for the dramatic flare of coming on deck with some pretty wild outfits.

USMS Susie Powell Award

Susie’s Fitness Award


Susie at 2014 Convention

Susie at 2014 Convention

Coach Cokie was awarded the USMS Dorothy Donnelly service award recognized for her extensive work with both USMS and Pacific Masters Swimming. She also received the 2014 USMS Coach of the Year Award! She was presented the award at the USAS Banquet filled with about 1300+ members of USMS, USA Swimming, Diving, Water Polo and Synchro Swimming. She was introduced by Rowdy Gaines and gave a short acceptance speech (below). She is thrilled beyond measure and thanks everyone on the team for their work to put together a nomination package. She was flabbergasted to receive the award as this team managed to keep secret they had nominated her.

Swimming World Magazine interviewed her and did a web article on 9-23-14. You can find that article here.

Cokie with Rowdy Gaines

Cokie with Rowdy Gaines

Cokie at the Podium

Cokie giving her acceptance speech

Cokie’s Acceptance Speech

My sincerest thanks and gratitude to USMS, to my Swymnut Masters team, to my friend and fellow award winning coach Susie Powell and to all who made this possible, especially my husband Tim who always encourages me to chase my dreams. I am deeply honored to receive this award.

Last week at ASCA, I encountered this Albert Einstein quote: “I have no special talent, I am just passionately curious.” That fits me.

I am so blessed to have the opportunity to follow my passion and serve my team, my community, Pacific Masters and U.S. Masters Swimming. I got into coaching Masters as a way to reciprocate to a sport that has helped me on so many levels. The crazy thing is, the more I give to the sport, the more it gives back. And that is what coaching and life is about. The more you give of yourself, the more you receive.

As coaches, we may not be solving political crises, creating world peace, or finding cures for debilitating diseases. Although, we know our swimmers do! But, we have the opportunity EVERY SINGLE DAY to positively influence those we work with, and that is what drives me. We witness a transformation take place with our swimmers. It starts with stroke metamorphosis and physical conditioning, but like sun rays, that transformation often extends out to their relationships and interactions with family, friends and others in their lives. It is an AWESOME thing to witness.

One last quote. Pericles said, “What you leave behind is not what is engraved in stone monuments, but what is woven into the lives of others.”

Thank you to all of you out there for the weaving you do with your friends, your family, and your sport. And Oh my gosh, cool beans, thank you for this award!

Sep 042014

Two top notch Pacific Masters stroke clinics are coming up soon!

On Saturday, September 27th there is a terrific backstroke-freestyle clinic in Davis led by Davis Aquatic Masters Coaches Stu & Mary Kahn. Not only are they outstanding coaches, they run great clinics. You will get the most current look at changes in the stroke and learn how to maximize your propulsion and minimize resistance. Here is the flyer for the clinic.

2014 Clinic Flyer Davis Free Back

On Sunday, October 19th, I’ll be leading a breaststroke clinic in San Mateo with Coach Tom Reudy of San Mateo Masters. He is an amazing breaststroker and also an excellent coach. In that clinic we’ll have one hour of classroom and two hours of pool time working all aspects of breaststroke including pull downs. Here is the flyer for this clinic.

2014 Clinic Flyer San Mateo Breast 101914

Sep 012014

Here is the latest instructional video from USMS featuring Coach Cokie and Swymnut Margaret De Somma. It is about the role of your hips in backstroke and freestyle and accompanies an upcoming article in the September/October SWIMMER Magazine titled “Get Hip With Your Hips”. The key is to understand the role your hips play and then learn to control the action to help propel you forward by tapping into the largest muscles in your back, your latissimus dorsi! Thank you to Margaret who makes this look so easy.

Aug 152014

i-coach-219192617_std1Ever thought about coaching? Want to learn more about what it takes to be a Masters coach? We are blessed to have local opportunities for just such training this fall/winter 2014.

First up we have the USMS Level 1 & 2 Coaches Certification training. That will be held at Rolling Hills Club in Novato on Saturday, October 4th from 9-5pm (show up at 8:30 for check in). The following day the instructors and coaches in the class will host a 3-hour stroke clinic for swimmers (covering all 4 strokes). That will be held at Rolling Hills Club as well and runs from 9am-noon (again, show up at 8:30 for check-in).

Then, on Saturday, December 5th, USMS is returning to Novato (again at Rolling Hills Club) to bring us USMS Level 3 Coaches Certification training.

If you think there is a chance in the future you might want to coach a Masters team, then seize this opportunity to catch this training close to home!

Cokie will be teaching the Level 1 & 2 class in October, and normally teaches the Level 3 course but will be in Cuba in December.

  • For further information on the Level 1 & 2 Coaching class October 4th, click here.
  • For signing up for the Stroke Clinic October 4th, click here. Cost is $40.
  • For further information on the Level 3 Coaching class December 5th, click here.
  • For more information about USMS Coaching Certification in general, go here.
Aug 052014

Kate Eby was in Oregon this past weekend for some open water swimming. Turns out not just the State of CA, OR and WA are on fire, so was Kate. She drives up to Cascade Lakes Oregon to compete in some open water events. Some you say? How about 4 swims?!? Saturday was the 500 meter and 1500 meter swim. Sunday was the 5K and 1000 meter swim. How’d she do? Holy smokes! First, second, second, third in the individual swims and FIRST overall for her age group.

She definitely fits as a NUT! Way to go Kate, we are all proud of you!

Oh yeah, by the way, on her return home, they closed the freeway she had used to travel from Sacramento to Oregon. That led to a 200 mile detour to get home. All the more time to savor those incredible swims. Kate Eby Cascade Lake OR