The Tokyo 2020 Olympics finally went ahead earlier this year and the Y, Kingswim and our wider community were involved in more ways than one.

Hosted the Australian Olympic Swimming Trials

The Australian Olympic Swimming Trials were held at the South Australian Aquatic and Leisure Centre (SAALC) on 12 to 17 June 2020. Heats and finals ran all day and organising them was no small feat.

SAALC was the first aquatic facility in the world to reopen and host a large scale aquatic event since the start of the pandemic. Due to the constantly changing restrictions and recurring lockdowns, the facility created 37 iterations of a COVID-19 management plan to ensure the trials ran as safely and efficiently as it possibly could.

We chose to look at this event like the Indigenous Australian Black Swan Dreamtime story of Guunyu. Shaped by his past and terrible event, Guunyu has used his steadfastness and spirit to survive and fight on to become a wiser and beautiful, humble, and more robust bird. This view of the event taught us how to learn and transform.” Adam Luscombe, SAALC’s General Manager.

This would not have been possible without the support of the South Australian Government, Swimming Australia, Swimming South Australia, the City of Marion, Amazon Prime and NEP Australia. Together, the event was a huge success and 37 swimmers got their tickets to Tokyo 2020.

Supporting young Australian skaters

The Y, in partnership with Skate Australia, hosts the only skate events across the country that includes qualifying points for the Olympics. Tokyo 2020 was the first time skateboarding was included in the Olympics, making it an extra special event for our Aussie skaters – all of whom competed in the Australian Skateboarding League (street and park) and National Championships in 2020 (both events were hosted by the Y).

Our YMCA Action Sports team works tirelessly to run skate workshops and events across the country to support all young people to get outdoors and get active. Watching the young skaters who came up through the Australian Skateboarding Leagues and Skate Park Leagues compete at the Olympics is really inspiring. We can't wait to support the next athletes vying for a place in Paris 2024.” Alice Hogan, YMCA Action Sports Manager.

Shane Oneill and Hayley Wilson competed in Street Skateboarding, Natalya Diehm and Logan Martin in Freestyle BMX, and Poppy Olsen, Keiran Woolley and Keegan Parlmer in Park Skateboarding – with Keegan winning Australia's first gold medal for skateboarding!

Cheering on our own staff member

We also saw Bec Henderson, Kingswim Narre Warren Swimming Instructor, make her Olympic debut in the 20km Race Walk in Tokyo. At just 20 years old, the postponement of the games worked in Bec’s favour as only this year was she able to qualify as a senior and make it to Tokyo.

For me, the cancellation was a good thing. You can improve so much in a year, so I stayed motivated and trained in order to be better.” Bec Henderson, Olympic athlete and Kingswim Narre Warren Swimming Instructor.

Bec was the youngest athlete in the event and came 38th out of 58 competitors, which is an amazing achievement. We wish Bec all the luck in her future race walking career and hope to see her in Paris 2024.

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