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Local swim program goes back to roots

POSTED September 30, 2011 9:50 p.m.

While Kim Corgiat was explaining the “rebranding” of Turlock Aquatic Club, the coach kept an eye on her swimmers, who were in the middle of a friendly competition toward the end of practice at the Pitman High pool. In this instance, swimming was not a task. It was a fun activity, and that’s how Corgiat and her program want others to see it.

“We’re trying to have a lot more fun out here,” she said.

Last week, Central Valley Aquatics of Turlock officially became Turlock Aquatic Club — returning to the original name that dates back to 1958, when the club was founded by Stan Sondeno. Throughout the years, it has gone through some changes.

In 1969, the club became an affiliate of the City of Turlock. Brent Bohlender became the coach until 1977. A series of coaches headed the program until Paul Maurer, a former swimmer, guided the program through this year.

During this time, the club was known as Central Valley Aquatics of Turlock, to reflect more than one area.

The recent change to Turlock Aquatic Club came with a new coach, in Corgiat, who has been coaching for eight years in the Turlock area. She wants to make the club a fun atmosphere while teaching swimmers all the important techniques and skills of the sport.

“My main focus is that the kids are learning the basic skills that they need to have a lifelong success in the sport,” she said, “to really develop skills, technique work and having it be fun.”

Bohlender, now the club’s community director, wants Turlock Aquatic to maintain a presence in the Turlock area, especially under the guidance of Corgiat.

“She certainly has a deep passion for the sport and she really wants to see the sport grow and get to a higher level,” Bohlender said about Corgiat. “She’s a perfect fit for what the mission statement is and what the goals are. She’ll do a great job.”

The club offers all-year swimming lessons, advanced swimming lessons and pre-high school water polo programs.

The rebranding of Turlock Aquatics includes returning to the original logo of a dolphin.

“When I had the opportunity to be involved in this,” Bohlender said, “one of the first things I thought was good to do was rebrand the program and go back to the original name. It’s a real attempt to go back to what it used to be and show the roots of Turlock and try to develop something with that.”

For more information, call coach Kim Corgiat at 614-SWIM (7946).

To contact Cshhun Sun, e-mail csun@turlockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2041.

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