After the previous night’s less-than-brilliant training session, I was a bit apprehensive about the Can Too beach session the next morning. Bluebottles are a common hazard, but they’re usually around a bit later in the season when people have a bit more confidence and some better developed skills to help them deal. Also, the weather decided to be a bit crappy again. It’d just be nice to have some good weather to really show off how awesome this sport can be on a brilliant beautiful bright day!

Luckily, though, when I arrived at  the beach, the bluebottles seemed to have come, conquered and left as quickly as they arrived. Whew! Big relief!!!

So, despite the weather being a little grey, we managed an amazing session. I swam with the intermediate group, and they are going so well! I was really proud of how well people had picked up the lessons from last week and remembered them, and how responsive they were to what the coaches were saying and the new things to learn for the day.

I loved watching people trying new techniques, like some basic wave-catching and starting to get the hang of them.

I loved watching people pushing themselves physically and pushing through their comfort zones.

I particularly loved watching one participant who had been too scared to get in the water last week come back again with amazing bravery and a renewed attitude, and not only get in the ocean but swim!!! Truly an amazing moment.

I loved watching some of the people I’ve known from previous programs when they were new, now sharing their experience, advice and contagious positivity with new people.

I Loved being able to share advice on everything from how to dive under a wave to what sort of goggles might be good.

I loved seeing people starting to understand how amazing ocean swimming is, how invigorating, how challenging, how rewarding, how fun.

And I kind of feel a bit like maybe I’m cheating a bit because sometime it feels like I’m getting even more out of this whole mentoring thing than the mentees. It’s such an amazing thing watching people learn and grow like that. I’m so proud of all of them.