Open Letter to the Providence College Swim Team

Glenn CardSenior Analyst IJanuary 23, 2009

To all PC swimmers,

For those freshmen on the team this year going “Huh,” ask the upperclassmen about last year’s letter. For the returning swimmers, Hola!

I decided to write to you a little earlier this year. Consider it my awkward attempt to inspire you as you continue through the final weeks of your season.

I’ll start with a quote from the fictional character of the Star Wars movie series, Yoda. “There is no try, there is only do or do not.”

That might sound a little harsh at first. Let me clarify.

You have been “trying” to get faster all season, now you can only “Do” your best.

Your coaches will appreciate the following.

Do put all the swim components together and perform them to perfection for every event you swim.

Do get into the water fast. Do not DQ on the start.

Do get a good pull-out to start your race. Do not breathe on every stroke, that won’t get you a best time.

Do attack the wall; it’s only trying to slow you down. Do not breathe into the wall. Do get a good turn and kick off the wall.

Do follow through with your kick and glide. Do not breathe on the first stroke after your pull-out.

Do finish strong for the touch. Do touch the pad and double touch if required.

Do not lose your head if you have a bad swim. You have another event coming up and you need to put the last one behind you.

Do get the most out of every practice. Do push your self. Do stay focused.

Speaking for the parents:

Do call home! Do not call for money. Do know that we are proud of you.

Do enjoy yourselves while you’re at college. If you only knew that we parents would love to be able to do what you are doing.

On the personal side of things, “There is no try, there is only do or do not. See where I’m going with this?

Do be confident of your abilities. You are swimming Division I in the Big East Conference. You’ve worked hard to be competitive. Very few of your contemporaries do what you are doing.

Do give yourself a break. Do not get discouraged. It’s not easy to juggle classes, homework and training. Do ask for help.

Do support your teammates if they had a bad swim, practice set or day.

Do celebrate your seniors as they have survived a year or more of this training than you have. Do not celebrate too hard; anything in moderation.

Do celebrate your team’s achievements. Do throw yourselves a rally.

Do make everyday memorable. Do remember that someone thought enough of all of you to write a letter.

Do not take my words as gospel as I am only a spectator. All of you have been swimming from an early age. Most of you could out swim me by the age of 10 years old.

If you do find this letter inspirational, do re-read it as often as you need to.

Do be proud. Be PC proud.

Your Fan,

Glenn Card

(Note to editors: No edits please as this article is geared toward a target audience that will understand all terms and phrases as written)