I took my first real swim lesson in 1998 at a local NYC Parks Department Pool; I was in my mid 30s. Prior to that I had always been a “water rat” but I didn’t know how to swim correctly. After several years of lessons I heard about the Brooklyn Bridge Swim across from Manhattan to Brooklyn. I wanted so badly to do that swim so that whenever I saw the East River I could say to myself: “I swam that!” There was no way I could swim that without doing some open water swims. That’s when I first heard about CIBBOWS.
At Brighton Beach I found a group of souls venturing out into the ocean. “Hey, I’m new here,” I said, “how does this ocean swimming work?” “We’re about to head out into the water for a swim, do you want to join us?” replied a couple of swimmers. I was a bit nervous at first, but they encouraged me, reassured me, and waited for me when I tired. I made it all the way to the Coney Island Pier on that first swim.
I swam my first Brooklyn Bridge swim from Manhattan to Brooklyn in 2007. My open water swimming has never stopped with the swims getting longer and bringing me to waters all around the world.
I’ve been coaching and teaching swimmers of all ages and levels at private pools and in the ocean for the past 5 years. My work with Cibbows has included being a: board member, race organizer, swim angel, group swim leader, and safety support team member. I’m a US Masters Swimmer certified coach and a certified Red Cross Lifeguard.