By Fraser Anderson
Capital Wave – Head Coach Swimming

On October 6th, 2021 Capital Wave officially became a swim club registered with Swim Ontario. This post is in celebration of this important development in our club’s history.

This past year, like many passionate swimmers, I picked up the book Why We Swim by Bonnie Tsui. The book is a celebration of being in the water, the benefits that we take from the experience of being submerged, and wanting to share that joy with others.

This past summer as I started my morning swim in the Ottawa River with the Club Head Coach, Rodrigo, I was stopped by another swimmer leaving the water. She had a smile on her face having just completed a 3K swim in calm water under a brilliant morning sun. She looked at me and said, “Thank you Fraser. If it wasn’t for you giving me the push to get in the river last year I would have never been out here today.”

I thanked her in return for making my day. Not much makes me happier. I was reminded of a quote that opened one of the chapters in Bonnie Tsui’s book:

Water is H2O, hydrogen two parts, oxygen one, but there is also a third thing, that makes it water and nobody knows what that is.

D. H. Lawrence

It’s that third thing that keeps us going back to the water (even when the water is 15 degrees Celcius and every part of your body is telling you to get out).

For me that third thing takes many forms, mostly surreal — it’s joy, it’s relaxation, it’s friendship, it’s meditation. In the case of my fellow swimmer coming out of the water it was most certainly joy, you could see it on her face. There are not many emotions better than that for two individuals to find a common bond.

All throughout the Capital Wave web site you see mention of being a part of a family. Maybe that’s the third thing? It’s hard to pin down and probably isn’t meant to be pinned down. We’ll leave that to the individual and let it be a part of their own relationship with the water.

So, let’s get back to the original question – as Capital Wave officially becomes a swim club as well as a Polo club, when is a swim club more than just a swim club?

Capital Wave is starting them young with our Junior Waves program so that our athletes get fully submerged in aquatic life. By the time our athletes are 13 they will more than likely describe themselves as aquatic mammals rather than land based and they will have two symbiotic sports that they can draw upon to find that balance that we all need in our lives. This is a big part of what makes the Capital Wave Swimming and Water Polo Club stand out.

You can be sure that we will continue to strive for that third thing that Mr. Lawrence refers to and help our athletes to find it for themselves. We want nothing more than to share our love for the water with the athletes that will come through being a part of our family.

I’ll end with this quote from Bonnie Tsui. I think it perfectly sums up the benefits of being in the water. I hope that Capital Wave can help you and your children find that third thing.

Buoyancy, floating, weightlessness. Freedom. These are the words we use to talk about swimming. Is it a coincidence that this is also the language we use to talk about the lightness of being, the wellness of being, that we strive for in this corporeal world?

Bonnie Tsui