At 14 years old, Taylor Fitzgerald has been setting a positive example for young women in her chosen sport of swimming for years now.
The Williams Lake Blue Fins Swim Club member is in the midst of preparing for the upcoming senior provincial championships where she’s already qualified and is hoping to contest for a medal in her favourite event, the backstroke. “I’ve been aiming for nationals for my backstroke but Westerns is where I’m headed right now, then hopefully nationals in Edmonton in August,” Fitzgerald said.
Fitzgerald, now one of the club’s most veteran athletes, started swimming competitively with the Blue Fins when she was six years old, and has been a member of the club for the past eight years. Asked what she enjoys about the sport, Fitzgerald said it’s simply being in the water, and having the ability to test and push her own limits through the sport.
“I just like the way it makes you feel being under water,” she said. “I like being in the water, I’ve always enjoyed being in the water, and seeing myself improve.”
In her years with the club, Fitzgerald said she’s made many friends, and has helped mentor both young male and female swimmers along in their respective events. “Swimming really brings us together,” she said.
“Especially at school I’ve made (lifelong) friends and we hang out.”
On what advice she’d give to any girls in the community thinking about picking up the sport, she said it can be extremely rewarding.
“It’s definitely tough, but it’s worth it: the athletic part of it all,” she said. “And competitions are always fun.”
Fitzgerald is coming off one of her best seasons as a Blue Fin where, in 2018, she medalled at the provincial championships in the 200-metre backstroke. She’s also set numerous club records with the Blue Fins, and noted she’s looking forward to competing and training in the sport for three more years to come.