Big Changes for the Heights Swim Team!


The girls swimming team shows off their socks for fun sock Friday

This year, the Heights swim team is revamping and modernizing its swimming program. It is adding more traditions, changing its workouts and routines, and including more emphasis on overall health and wellness.

Elena Rinaldi is a Junior this year and has been on the Heights swim team for three years. She said she is excited about the changes that are being made to the team, especially the introduction of more fun traditions. One such addition is “fun sock Friday,” where the girls’ team wears creative socks during their workout. Hannah Teets, also a Junior, agrees. She says team bonding is an important element that is being incorporated into the team this year. Patricia Chen is a Freshman this year. She has been on swim teams previously, but this is her first year at Heights. “I’m most excited about meeting all these new girls,” says Chen.

On top of more creative activities, there is also more emphasis on overall wellness, mental health, and nutrition. For this, Coach Dan Budin hired Esther Bergson, a Heights High alumni and Kent State graduate who is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in Nutrition from Case Western Reserve University. Along with Bergson, he hired an additional assistant coach Brendan Bogues. Bouges swam on a club team at Cornell University. He has coached at F.A.S.T. in Round Rock, Texas; Mountain Lakes High School in Mountain Lakes, New Jersey; and the YMCA. He has an undergraduate degree from Cornell and is pursuing a Master’s from John Carroll University while student-teaching at Heights. Coach Budin said, “I conducted a thorough search for people I felt shared my vision for the program and for modern training methods for adolescents. I’m really excited to be able to work with Brendan and Esther and have their knowledge and talents available for the team.”