Sport / 23rd November 2023
Back into the swim of things
A town swimming pool is more than a place to cool down, it also offers aquatic activities to improve on skills, health and fitness.
The local pool is popular in Australian culture, offering a chance to splash, to socialise and build a low-stress exercise routine.
In Coonabarabran, the Council-operated swimming pool is host to multiple activities, providing locals with exercise options and the learning of technical swim skills.
Local groups Aqua Aerobics and Swimming Club provide beneficial activities, encouraging locals to move their bodies, all while keeping cool.
Aquatic exercise relieves stress on the muscles and joints, while the natural resistance from moving through water helps strengthen the body.
Both clubs encourage the benefits in different ways.
Swimming Club teaches competitive swimming by building on stroke techniques and learning to start off the blocks.
Club president, David McWhirter said time trials are also a regular part of the Swimming Club program that help teach swimmers how to compete in a healthy and supported manner.
Swimming Club is run by volunteers and currently involves 26 juniors, with hopes for more to join when the water temperature rises.
In order to join, participants must be able to confidently swim a 50-metre lap of freestyle.
Having been involved in the club for nine years, Mr McWhirter understands the positive outcomes of swimming competitively.
“The skills learnt give children and teenagers an advantage in school carnivals and those progressing to higher levels like zone and state championships,” Mr McWhirter said.
“We enjoy teaching, so the more swimmers we get to teach, the happier we are.”
Squad and lap training runs from Monday to Wednesday at 6pm, with time trials held on Thursday at 6pm.
From the weekly time trials, when swimmers beat their previous time, they accrue points towards the end-of-season club championship.
Water aerobics is a non-competitive form of exercise at the pool, offering hour-long sessions that help keep joints and muscles strong.
Within the Aqua Aerobics Club there are five trained instructors, providing a sense of variety for each session.
One instructor is Fay Chapman, who has participated in water aerobics since 2009.
Mrs Chapman is officially trained and continues her training each year to upgrade her skills and gain inspiration for her sessions.
Water aerobics runs six days a week and is open to anyone.
“It is really good socially and you can go at your own pace. Everyone is happy and smiling and looks out for each other,” Mrs Chapman said.
“I just love it, I find it makes me feel really good.”
Coonabarabran Swimming Club members Charlie Baker and Rachel Staniforth.
"We enjoy teaching," said Coonabarabran Swimming Club president, David McWhirter.