This month in our regular “Who’s making a Splash” feature we talk to a self-assured swimmer from Fairfield Club – Andrew Jeffcoat.
Andrew broke his arm when he was 10 or 11 years old and it was his parents who got him into swimming. They thought swimming would be excellent for the rehabilitation of his arm and if it wasn’t for them he probably wouldn’t be swimming today.
Andrew boards at Hamilton Boys High School and as a busy school Prefect his biggest challenges are balancing schoolwork, hostel work and training. “I often have meetings at the same time as trainings and I sometimes miss out on training because of that. It’s not ideal but it’s something I’ve had to deal with over the last few years”.
In April Andrew traveled to Australia to compete at the Australian Age Group Championships and although he was quite sick just prior to the BOP Short Course Champs in NZ in October he managed to pull off a superb performance and broke the 50m and 100m backstroke 18-year-old Waikato records.
“I really enjoy the competition, it’s about the friendships you make, the rivalry in training, when you egg each other along and cheering for each other at meets even though you want to win”
Andrew’s top tip for aspiring young swimmers is to NEVER GIVE UP.
“I have been through tough times when trainings have been hard and I haven’t been performing as well as I wanted. But by sticking to it and doing whatever you can to reach your goals and never giving up means that eventually your dreams will come true. Two years ago I wasn’t a top performer, I was making nationals and making finals but I wasn’t meddling too much. Then all of a sudden because my training picked up – particularly the quality of my training and the mindset that I’d been working on allowed me to reach the level that I am at now.”
“I like to think I’m quite a positive person but I do find that when something gets me down I can get into a slump. I feel a good mindset means that you conscious of your own self talk cycle and I talk to people about different strategies for keeping a positive mindset. It’s about saying to yourself, it’s a good day, the sun is shining and I have a lot to look forward to and trying to think of things that can get you out of your slump.”
“I normally try to get to seven or eight training is a week. Some week’s it’s not as high due to other commitments but for me it’s about the quality of the training. Having a good work ethic while at training is what’s really important to me.”
Here is a short video…