by Aliyah Armstrong | staff writer

 The aquatics program is well into their fall competition season but in order for the team to be successful while competing, a complex tryout process is required.

“We have two periods of swimming, there’s eighth period swimming and the tryout set for it is 10 100’s freestyle. So every 1:30 [one minute and 30 seconds] they have to swim 100 yards freestyle. For first period, it’s 12 100’s freestyle and you swim those on the 1:15 [one minute and 15 seconds] and they’re pretty tedious sets. And they really require that you have some previous swimming experience,” aquatics coach Jesse Snelson said.

Unlike the swimmers, divers don’t necessarily have to have previous diving experience, according to Snelson. 

“But if they have a background in gymnastics it helps. And to tell you the truth, that’s where a lot of our divers have come from,” Snelson said.

After making the team, the members of the aquatics program then begin their training for upcoming meets and competitions.

“We normally go about 5,800 yards every practice, but when we have a big meet like TISCA, we start taking down the yardage. Like Monday we went 5400 yards, yesterday we went about 4600 yards; tomorrow we’ll go 3800 yards. So we slowly bring down the yardage for them and it rests them,” Snelson said.

Photo by Emily Hermann

Photo by Emily Hermann

 According to Snelson, the next major competition is coming up, which is a state-wide event. 

“This weekend we have a big meet called TISCA, Texas Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association. And TISCA is in almost every region of the state. It’s a two day meet- one day is high school events, and the second day is what they call ‘club events’ or stuff that’s not normally swam at a high school meet,” Snelson said.

Along with TISCA, the swimmers and divers also attend other meets during the fall season.

“Including district and regionals, there are about 11 meets and it depends… first period swimmers will go to certain meets depending on their ability. And some of the eighth period swimmers will attend different meets, depending on how fast they are,” Snelson said.

The various events that the respective aquatics teams participate in are generally located around San Antonio, with one exception.

“All the meets are in town, except every year we usually do an away meet. Last year we went to Victoria; this year we went to Killeen. But there’s meets all over the state we look at [to] see where it will fit in our schedule, how much it will cost to go there, that type of thing,” Snelson said.

However, competition season does not stop in the fall for the aquatics programs, as there are still

competitions in the spring semester. 

“In the spring we have our districts and regionals and state meet,” Snelson said. “And that carries us through the end of February [so] we train hard all year,” Snelson said.

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About The Author

Aliyah Armstrong is a senior at Johnson High School and an editor-in-chief of MyJagNews. She spends most of her time dancing, as a Belle and outside of school. When she is not dancing, she spends time playing with her German Shepherd puppy, Cinna (yes, he is named after The Hunger Games character).

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