Smoky River Manatees ready to take to the water

Forty-one swimmers are part of the Smoky River Manatees Swim Club this season and coach Natasha Smit is looking forward to teaching them.

Mac Olsen
Express Staff
The Smoky River Manatees Swim Club has begun their new season, with 41 swimmers participating.

For coach Natasha Smit, personal development and improvement is the key for every swimmer.

“Our goal in swimming is not to beat the person next to you,” says Smit. “It’s to better yourself.”

Every meet the swimmers go to, they’re rewarded for improving on their own times, she adds.

Smit has two assistant coaches, Charlize Bremont and Jessie Sylvain. They are coaching 41 swimmers, divided into the beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.

Throughout the season, coach Matthew Bain will provide his services to improve the swimmers’ strokes.

“We’re lucky to have him,” says Smit.

Bain, based in Grande Prairie, is a registered professional psychologist/mental health consultant. As per his website at

“Matthew has been in the field of Human Performance for over 15 years. He understands that challenges present themselves in different ways. In sport, Matthew has worked with athletes and teams from the local, Provincial, National, and International levels. Matthew’s diverse professional and academic background includes working with multiple populations.

“Working with individuals experiencing motivational challenges for lifestyle changes, anxiety or depressive disorders, eating disorders or disordered eating patterns, and exercise motivations are some of the populations.”

The Manatees are in the Falher Regional Pool four nights a week.

Some swimmers went to Slave Lake this past weeked for their first meet of the season. Look for a story in a future edition of the Express.

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