We are excited to be joined by Cody Lavoie, the Head Coach at Dallas Swim Kids. Cody his team at Dallas Swim Kids teach children to become comfortable and confident swimmers. They offer a variety of programs for swimmers with different levels and goals.
Enjoy some of Cody’s thoughts on everything from his own experience as a swimmer, to what it takes to be a successful swimmer, and his favorite song to play during a practice!
Q: Were you a swimmer before you became a coach?
A: Yes, I swam competitively for about 15 years going through the national level program in Canada and competing in college at Delta State University. After graduation I moved to Dallas to begin coaching full-time.
Q: How has the sport/industry changed since you were a swimmer?
A: Swimming now is more popular than it was when I was a kid and in the area I grew up in. Children are wanting to become future Olympians and are willing to dedicate themselves at a very young age. The competitive fire and passion for the sport amazes me in these young athletes.
Q: What is your favorite song to play at practice that pumps up your athletes?
A: Favorite song to play at practice is Pump It by Black Eyed Peas. The kids love it, I love it, and it’s a great pump up song to swim fast!
Q: What team building exercises do you encourage among your swimmers?
A: We love finishing off practices with relays! It’s a great team building exercise that helps develop camaraderie among the swimmers. It’s also an awesome way to finish off practice with some fast swimming!
Q: What is your favorite memory as a coach?
A: My favorite memory as a coach is seeing my swimmers be so happy after a competition for achieving new personal best times. It was my favorite feeling as a swimmer, and it’s an even better feeling as a coach!
Q: What is the best lesson you learned from coaching?
A: As a coach I’ve learned the value of developing relationships with my swimmers. A positive relationship between a coach and swimmer is a recipe for success. There’s more to life than swimming, so to be able to be a role-model in these swimmers’ lives is very special.
Q: What skills do you think are necessary to be a successful swimmer?
A: To be a successful swimmer, I believe you need to be dedicated and have a love for the sport. As soon as you lose your love for swimming, your chances at being successful become near impossible. As a coach if you have a swimmer who is dedicated to working hard and loves to swim, the sky is the limit.
Q: What is the swimming community like in Dallas?
A: The swimming community in Dallas is very big compared to other areas I’ve coached in. Besides club swimming, masters swimming and summer league swimming is extremely popular. The age that swimmers get involved in the sport is also very young. Swimmers develop a passion for the sport and begin swimming competitively at the age of 6 to 7 years old. It’s amazing to see the sport grow and be so popular in the DFW area.
Q: What is the best piece of advice you could give new parents who want to get their child comfortable around the water?
A: Start them young and be consistent! Some of the most advanced swimmers I’ve coached are the ones that have been consistent with swimming at a young age. Swimming is a year-round sport and a life skill. When you stay consistent with swim classes (especially when getting started), the progress accelerates!
Q: What is a quote that you take with you through life?
A: "Get comfortable with being uncomfortable." This was a quote my swim coach and father preached growing up. As a coach if you are not constantly challenging your swimmers, the results will slowly become minimal. It’s important in training that when the time comes to swim fast, swimmers are reaching that level of being uncomfortable. That feeling is what results in improvements and success. It also develops confident swimmers and prepares them for future competitions.