Club Sport Spotlight: Swimmer Bridget Collins

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Junior Bridget Collins competes in the 200m butterfly at a NC swim meet.

Maddie Rocchio

Junior Bridget Collins has been swimming competitively at the Riviera Swim Club for almost eight years. When she was little, Collins always admired the Rivi swimmers. 

“It was something that I always wanted to do,” Collins said. 

Eight years later, she has become one of the Rivi’s best and most experienced swimmers.

 “My favorite event is probably the 200m breaststroke, that’s my best event and I swim it almost every meet,” Collins said.

 Something that has made the Rivi special for Collins are the team traditions.

“With just my friends we used to walk over and we’d get food at Safeway or Starbucks after practice and then we also have our Rivi cheers and special dinners,” Collins said. 

At the end of the regular season the team begins championship meets. The championship meets are more selective and swimmers must be able to compete at a higher level to participate.

“At a championship meet you have to have a certain time to get in and you’re only really allowed to swim that event,” Collins said. 

The selectivity and level of competition at championship meets is part of what makes them special. The championship meets also carry more excitement for the swimmers. 

“It’s also a big deal because they have award ceremonies, medals and you get lots of spirit wear from it, and there’s a lot of fun energy,” Collins said.

One of Collins’ favorite feelings in swimming is finally achieving a goal after working toward it for a long time. Similar to other sports, hard work may take time to produce tangible results in competition, but it makes seeing results more significant.

“When I’ve been working for several months or even years to qualify for a certain cut and I finally make it is one of my favorite parts. I was 14 and it was really like the first time in my age group that I was able to compete and I was super excited,” Collins said.

While not in season, the Rivi swimmers cross train outside of the pool to stay in shape. 

“We do what we call dry land training and in the summer we do running. We do a lot of cross fit-type training, like sit-ups and push-ups, and then we also do stuff in the weight room,” Collins said.

Training outside of the pool is important for building strength and maintaining cardiovascular health during the off-season. 

In the remainder of her season, Collins hopes to continue her improvement.

“I hope to improve my times and hopefully qualify in a few more events for championship meets,” Collins said.