Presenter’s notes to Rotary Club

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Visiting Kittanning, Pennsylvania

A latex swim cap stretches and returns to its original size. Meanwhile, a mind that has been expanded never return to its original size and shape.

My duty as a coach is to stretch the minds of the athletes. Coaches push and pull teams to go out of their comfort zones. 

In recent years, I’ve been coaching the Obama Academy Eagles of Pittsburgh Public Schools. We share the eagle mascot with Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, of Broward County, a Public School District, Parkland, Florida. #MSDStrong.

School sports are in a terrible place today. Sadly, we’re faced with the fact that the acts of a few individuals can spoil everything for everyone else.  

Today’s talk is slated to be interactive with discussion points and test questions.


What do you consider our authentic touchstone? Ideas?

  • A standard or criteria by which something is judged or recognized.
  • A fundamental or quintessential part or feature
  • Historic importance

My answers:

  1. Sports town
  2. River town
  3. Parenting Mecca

Favorite sports? Favorite team(s)?


Concept maps of sports

Concept map advantages, showing relationships. Getting on the same page quickly. Outset of a complicated journey. Refresher for studies. 


  • Review ecology of San Francisco Bay
  • Map all the members
  • Map all the guests and topics
  • Map all the interests and places to devote community energy

Sports … Definition?

Sports are games of time, space and relationship.


  • Rules
  • Leagues
  • Records
  • Standards
  • Play, fitness, recreation, sports, athletics.
  • Games of chance
  • Gambling


  • Races timed
  • Basketball, buzzer beater
  • Baseball (pitch clock)


  • Strike zone
  • End zone
  • Course boundaries


  • Self
  • Rules
  • Team
  • Officials
  • Fan
  • Coach
  • School
  • Sponsors
  • Opponents
  • Equipment

Athletes, masters of managing their time, space and relationships

  • Wellness matters
  • Being responsible
  • Being an adult
  • Make better decisions
  • Grip on sportsmanship, teamwork
  • Goal setting (Next time)


  • MMA (Mixed Martial Arts)
  • Boxing
  • Entertainment
  • Movie of Rocky
  • Super Bowl replay
  • America Ninja Warrior TV show
  • Emotion, time shifts.

Bad sports

  • Hurtful?
  • Football concussions

My sport, swimming

    • Aquatics. See the concept map
    • Coach Mark’s Mission
    • You miss a foul shot, no big deal.
    • Death. Lots of paperwork.

    • Drowning stats.

Lesson helpers

  • 1 word, T
  • 2 words, TA
  • 3 words, CYL
  • 4 words, FLAB

Much of sports coaching is body position.

  • Planks
  • Core
  • Court awareness
  • Footwork


  • Communication nightmare.
  • Learning lab for the discovery of personal and group excellence.


  • Lifeguard

Whole community

  • Boy / girl

Whole body

  • Steve Lunquist
  • Fins
  • Prize


  • Course, Get Your Feet Wet
  • Quizzes, SKWIM Levels 1, 2, 3, 4
  • Swimming has a downfall
  • 33% of adults can swim.

We might be able to change the world if we teach everyone to swim. But I am not going to hold my breath waiting for that to happen.

We will change the world, playing SKWIM.

  • Water Polo

Rotary challenge, invite

  • Visit Saturday Swim School, on your own
  • Clinic at Saturday Swim School with a group trip
  • Sponsor a SKWIM SYSTEM at a local pool
  • Buy disks for members / rotary promotions
  • Buy 3-10 disks for lifeguards
  • Hold a one day clinic and learn the game
  • Play pick up all summer long
  • Upgrade with some pool fins
  • Upgrade to a sport and play another team. Come to or host a squad from Pittsburgh
  • Get a couple of existing swim teams to extend their summer programs with August SKWIM

Wish, we need more keels.

Become a member of the International Swim Coaches Association.