Swimming worth the effort


Emma Johnson, Public Relations Manager

As someone who has been swimming since the age of 3 or 4, my relationship with swimming has changed greatly throughout the years.
What started out as just a recreational sport, has shaped me into who I am today.
At the high-school level, I move from the recreational summer team to a fall break. Almost every day in the spring and summer, I swim at the pool or work out so I will benefit during the season. These workouts change the way I think, act and live. The years I have spent swimming taught me a lot about life and the world around me.
In the summer, practice starts at 6:30 in the morning. I drive up to Louisburg every day and stay there until noon. During this time I have practice. I also coach the eight and under the age group of the team and then I stay and teach two hours of swimming lessons. Through doing this the past three years, I learned it is OK to test your limits, have bad days, and have team spirit because I learned to rise above the challenges and celebrate the accomplishments. A swim team is like your family, after a while you guys start doing just about everything together. Swimming is a way for me to relax as well as push myself to be the best version of myself.
Swimming also taught me the importance of working well with others. To me, swimming is not an individual sport. Every day, I walk through the Ozone front doors with ladies I am proud to have as teammates from Paola, Osawatomie and Louisburg. As a team, we push each other to do our best and work our hardest. We are enthusiastic and try to make even harder days fun. As a result, we have become a sisterhood. A bond with friendships that will last a lifetime.
If you asked me a few years back why I swim, I am not sure what I would have said, probably something along the lines of ‘It gives me something to do,’ ‘it helps me stay in shape,’ ‘I get to have writing on my back.’ Yes, all these things are true. but they are not the reasons now. Now, I swim because of the hard work, determination, and my teammates make it all worth it.