So...Parker is on the swim team in Piedmont. He is one of the youngest ones. He improved greatly this past year both in swimming and in "getting it" which I've blogged about before.
At the end of the year, the volunteer, parent board of the team told the other parents that the coaches were not happy with the Piedmont pool and wanted to move to Albany part time. Parker's level would not have been affected, but the older kids would have to have workouts there in the afternoon. Which is hell because Albany, although only 10 miles away, is up Hwy 80 which is always a nightmare and horrible in the afternoon. The parents voted, but before the board told us the decision, all the coaches quit effective July 31st. They decided they just wanted to start a swim team in Albany and be done with Piedmont. They expected a good number of kids from Piedmont to go with them.
I've never been a fan of the coaches. They are not welcoming, they don't share information, they aren't engaging with the kids (at Parker's level at least), they don't actually seem to teach much swimming, and they appear to be fairly unorganized. Numerous times I tried to ask questions, to get advice about Parker, but was always met with a sizeable amount of vagueness. Which I can't stand.
So when they quit, I was totally fine with it. And although Parker liked Jesus, one of the assistant coaches, because we did private classes with him, I don't think he'll care who the coach is as long as he is not a dick.
Before they quit they had said that all afternoon workouts for the summer would be in Albany and Parker's level would be combined with one level up. I figured we would do it because he would get a lot of attention (most kids don't work out in the summer) and it would be good to do a slightly harder workout. But so far it's been horrible. The drive is as bad as I thought it would be, the facility is not user friendly (not many showers, no where for parents to sit), crowded, etc. And the coaches are checked out and don't seem to care at all about Parker. (We told them we would not be staying in Albany come the fall because they needed to know figures.) He and the other kids were thrown into the longer workout (50% longer) without any ramp up or modifications and the coaches were surprised when they were struggling. My attempt at explaining this to the head coach was met with a blank stare. So after a few workouts, we (Michael and I with some input from Parker) decided that he would not continue on the team for the summer.
Yesterday, one of them came down from Sacramento to do a "deck interview" which is basically coaching the kids in a workout so the parents (the board) can see what his style is. We weren't going to return to practice, but I wanted to see this guy in action. He seems like he would be good, but I don't think he'll take the job if he is offered since he wants a more competitive position. He had the kids do lots of dives in (Starts) which Parker is actually pretty good at now, but the poor boy was freezing.
He took a long hot shower afterwards. Michael and the girls ate a dinner Parker didn't like so I decided we would eat in Albany to avoid traffic and eat something delicious. So we went to Nations, a burger joint. He was very hungry and it was delicious.
Hopefully it will be the last time we go to Albany, but might return for another coach candidate.