The Iowa City Parks and Recreation Department and the Iowa City Eels swim club (ICE) have recruited Olympic gold medalist swimmer Anthony Ervin to teach a freestyle and backstroke swim clinic on March 25 at the Mercer Aquatic Center (2701 Bradford Dr.).
Matthew Eckhardt, aquatics supervisor at the Iowa City Parks and Recreation Department, says the idea for the swim clinic arose after hearing that Ervin would already be in town for the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Swimming and Diving Championships, taking place March 26-28 at the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center.
“It’s a big deal for the city to hold both Big 10 Championships and then turn around a month later and do the nationals,” Eckhardt said. “We want to try and build on some of that momentum of what’s already taking place.”
The timing worked out well for Iowa City’s young competitive swimmers. The two available clinic sessions are geared toward youth, with only 40 spots per session. The first session will be from 4-6 p.m. for children ages 10-12, and the second will follow from 6-8 p.m. for teens ages 13-18. Ervin, whose accolades include winning a gold medal for the men’s 50-meter freestyle at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games, will talk about his life as a professional athlete and focus on his training habits, the drills he uses and his dryland routines.
“It’s definitely going to fill up, there’s no doubt,” Eckhardt said. “We want to make sure that everyone that gets signed up and registered has a good chance of having some one-on-one instruction.”