Y Story | Darren Lundrigan: Making a Splash

Darren Lundrigan is a serious athlete with more than 35 years of experience with the Y, as both a member and, at one time, a team member. He’s a runner and a serious cyclist who had his heart set on a major accomplishment: completing his first triathlon. But there was one problem.

“When I was 14 years old, I had a near-drowning incident,” he said. “It gave me a huge fear of water.”

Because of this frightening incident, Darren avoided the water for years. But if Darren couldn’t conquer his fear and learn to swim, he couldn’t complete his goal.

“This past year, I made a decision that I wanted to learn to lane swim and participate in a triathlon. The bike portion is a given and I can even pull off a run if I try hard enough,” he said. “The swim is my nemesis.”

In September 2020, Darren saw that the Y was offering Adult Swim Lessons. “Why not give it a go?” he asked himself as a challenge. Darren enrolled and that’s where he met Ken, his swim instructor.

“The first thing he did was try to understand my goals and experience. He was able to adjust his style for a true 53-year-old beginner,” Darren says. “He used his common experience as a cyclist to make things relatable.”

Before his lessons, Darren wasn’t even able to put his head beneath the water and, after just three weeks of three days a week in the pool, he was light years ahead of where he started. Now, Darren is front crawling, mastering his breath during strokes, and he hopes to be participating in the Y’s lane swims by Christmas.

“Ken has made the water a place that I want to be. If he can make this work for me, there is no one that he’s unable to teach.”

Improve Your Aquatics Skills at the Y

Would you like to learn to swim at the Y, as Darren did? We offer swim lessons for members of all ages — and they’re even included as part of your membership! Register for lessons today by clicking the button below. Spaces are limited and fill up quickly!

More Information

Would you like to learn more about our Aquatics programs? Contact us by e-mail and we’ll be glad to help: aquatics@saintjohny.ca.