Lynchburg YMCA swim team returns to practice with adjustments in response to COVID-19 pandemic


LYNCHBURG, Va. (WFXR) – The Lynchburg Piranhas swim team was allowed to begin training at the local YMCA after being out of the pool for almost 10 weeks during the peak of the pandemic.

Head Coach Ryan Woodruff explained what it was like to experience these unusual circumstances.

“It was definitely strange. We went about 10 weeks without practice. For most of our swimmers, they swim 49 weeks out the year typically, so for most of our swimmers, that was the longest break they’ve had in their swimming careers. It was definitely strange for them and strange for me,” he says.

Although practices have resumed, the team has not returned to a completely normal routine. Woodruff says they have adjusted to many changes, such as shorter practice times, occupancy limits, and fewer swimmers per lane.

Parents are also supporting their children as they return to practice. Renee Delvene, a parent of a Lynchburg swimmer, thinks the YMCA and Coach Woodruff are doing a great job of keeping the athletes safe and active during this time.

“I feel like they’re doing things the right way. They were doing dry-land at first and now they’re moving it back into the pool and doing everything slowly, not having as many kids swimming at a time,” she said.

Coach Woodruff doesn’t know what to expect for the future of the program amid the coronavirus outbreak, but he hopes that the team will be able to return to a normal schedule soon and begin hosting meets within the community in the fall.

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