North West synchronised swimmer Daisy Rushton, 14, recently competed at the Primorje Synchro Cup in Croatia. Swim England NW caught up with Daisy to get her thoughts on competition life and representing her country at synchronised swimming.
How long have you been a synchronised swimmer?
I’ve been taking synchronised swimming seriously for about 4 years now. I joined City of Preston Aquatics in 2013 and competed in the National Age Group Championships in Gloucester that year.
How often do you train?
On a weekly basis I train every day and sometimes twice a day either in the water or on land. I swim with CoPA four times per week (including the Elite session) and at the Palatine Centre in Blackpool twice a week where I focus on ‘speed’ swimming and endurance.
Additionally I attend:
- NW Elite sessions (various NW pools)
- England sessions – North (Leeds)
- England Talent sessions (Aldershot/Guildford)
You’re a member of the North West Elite squad but also a member of the England Age Groups Squad. Can you explain what the Age Groups Squad is and how you came to be a part of it?
I’ve been part of the England talent set up for two years now. Invitations to trial (usually at Crystal Palace though in Bristol this year) are linked to performance at the National Age Group Championships. Last year I was part of the England Development Squad and this year I moved up to the Age Group Squad which is for swimmers aged between 13 and 15.
What’s the most difficult or challenging thing about being a synchronised swimmer?
Synchronised swimming is a physically demanding sport. Even now, I’m daunted when the coach asks for a ‘full swim’ i.e. a full routine (solo/duet/team) – sometimes we do several full swims in a session.
What are some of your favourite competition successes?
That’s easy winning team gold with the England Age Group Squad in Croatia – and also finishing 5th in the figures competition.
The recent Primorje Cup in Croatia was your first experience competing abroad. What was it like to represent your country abroad in Croatia?
I loved it! It would be fair to say it was nerve racking at times but making the podium in any competition makes it all worthwhile. I was very proud and it was great to have my mum and dad there to watch.
Did you have a nice time in Croatia? Did you have time to make it a holiday or was it all work, work, work?
For the most part it was work, work, work. However, when you’re stretching and ‘walking through’ by the beach it’s not all bad! Also, trips abroad really build team spirit and camaraderie which leads to great friendships.
Do you have any favourite role model synchronised swimmers?
Yes – I’ve been inspired by Andrea Fuentes for as long as I’ve been in the sport.