Sunday, 23 November 2014

Ocean Walker on Teesside

If memory serves me correctly, I first met Adam Walker in 2008 whilst swimming in Dover Harbour. He went on to swim swim The English Channel that year in an impressive time of 11 hours 35 minutes.

Fast forward to 2014 Adam was well on his way to becoming the first Britain to complete 'The Oceans 7' and was now hosting swim training camps both at home and abroad. His coaching sessions looked interesting though I had not personally attended, as luck would have it one such camp was taking place this summer at Bishopton Lake (about 5 minutes from home) I took this opportunity to briefly meet up and had a rather inspirational chat with him that evening and decided to keep a closer eye on his progress.

August soon arrived and whilst I was completing one way Windermere number 5, Adam was completing the North Channel from Ireland to Scotland and in doing so made it 7 out of 7.

By now he was pretty much flirting with celebrities! telling his story loud and proud. I therefore more or less pestered him to attend the Stockton area where he could also speak, providing I could gather sufficient interested parties.

Yesterday around 60 of us gathered at David Lloyds Teesside where we were first entertained with some acoustic singing by Gemma (Adams girlfriend) followed by Adams story, unfortunately I missed the first ten minutes or so of the talk as I had volunteered to sell raffle tickets !! I soon got up to speed as Adam engaged with the audience rattling off the details of all seven crossings. The presentation was very well received and I thank Adam for making the effort to travel to our neck of the woods.

The next morning....after far too much alcohol, with a bed time long after midnight, I was back to David Lloyds for a 1 to 1 technique/video analysis session. Feeling slightly under the weather I found the session quite demanding but extremely beneficial. Adam (who uses a rhymical hip rotation to maximise his power and glide) gave clear explanations and demos which I was soon imitating and practising.(at least I was attempting to!) He stayed in the water with me for in excess 2 hours and recorded several elements as we built my stroke in a series of drills. On completion we viewed the recordings and chatted regarding the way forward.

This for me this was the highlight of the weekend, if you are considering or feel the need for some stroke improvement/analysis, I would recommend being Walkerized!!

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