How Coaches Spot talent in the Pool

Ali Souz

Posted on August 13 2015

How Coaches Spot talent in the Pool

How Coaches Spot talent in the Pool and How to Land A College Sponsorship in the USA


Swimming scholarships or sponsorships are highly competitive. It is an international business, and there is a huge pool of talented swimmers to choose from. It is important to understand the entire process. Here’s how to get noticed in and out of the pool by coaches and recruiters, if you’re goal is a college swimming scholarship in the United States.

where to begin

  1.    Where to Begin

Coaches award swimming scholarships based on what their  programs need. Research colleges that fit your level of swimming talent, academic achievement and school swimming programs that have a need for your swimming specialty or strength.

Research the colleges to determine your favourites and where you stand the best chance of being recruited in terms of their swimming program needs and your abilities. Check each school’s website to see what times their swimmers are posting at meets to see if you are competitive and a good match. The bigger your list, the better your chance is of finding that perfect match.

Make sure you get email addresses and phone numbers for all the coaches on your school list and mail the following information to each coach:

  • A resume with detailed stats on all of your past seasons. Make sure you include a copy of all your high school transcripts and test scores along with your academic records, awards and any scholarships. Remember that coaches are not simply looking for top notch swimming talent, but equally for swimmers that are academically superior, disciplined and goal-focused.
  • Create a video that highlights your skills. The tape should be high quality and demonstrate who you are as a person, scholar and athlete. Include highlights from swim meets that show you in action. Include a link to view your video on
  1. Communicate

The best way to get noticed or have a coach come to you is to become a fantastic communicator. It is also critical to know the coaches schedules and what swim meets they attend.

  • Wait two weeks and if the coach from a school has not contacted you, call the coach to let them know you are very interested in their school and their program.
  • Always respond to any coach that replies to your email.
  • Send update emails to coaches about your progress and achievements.
  • Study the coach, their program, and the school, so you can ask informed questions and demonstrate your enthusiasm and knowledge about the school and the swimming program.
  • If you get the opportunity for a phone conference with the coach, prepare for the call by learning about their most recent seasons, any issues, successes etc. Think ahead about what questions you may be asked so you can prepare answers and put together a list of questions for the coach.
  • Never ignore an email or phone call from a coach-even if it is from a school not high on your list. You do not know how the recruitment process will go, and a low school on your list, may end up being the school you attend!
  • Learn what swim meets the coaches will be at and attempt to compete there so you get noticed.

Following these tips will help you get the attention of coaches and improve your chances of landing a swimming scholarship or sponsorship.

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