Swimming with sister and brothers was just about the best way to spend an afternoon in the 1970’s.
There is a cine film on You Tube of us playing at Bramcote in about 1970. I am the boy in armbands being carried by Mum. I’ve always kept with me the idea that swimming is fun, currents and tides permitting.
I was not a member of a swimming club until my children joined Portland SC, but have been a competitive runner for thirty years. I love the inclusiveness of swimming galas and cross country races alike. The drama of children or adults racing towards a personal best always makes me smile without realising.
Our three children have benefitted enormously from being members of Portland. They enjoy the community spirit and the expertise of the head coach. As a parent I like the way they take it for granted that hard exercise is normal.
I trained as a level one coach this year and now can’t watch any swimmer without mulling over the details of their stroke, it’s a compulsive puzzle. Seeing a child begin to improve their technique and to slip through the water with a bow wave in front of them is great fun, it reminds me of Bramcote in 1970.
Portland is a small club with lovely atmosphere. I am grateful to the head coach and to the committee who work behind the scenes.