Who ARE we?
Synchronized Swimming for Athletes with Disabilities (Synchro AWD) is a USA Based
non-profit 501(c)3 organization which supports education to the general public about artistic swimming amongst people with disabilities & special needs and to develop an institution to teach, train and disseminate educational materials to the public, including, but not limited to material relating to areas of instruction, lectures, disabilities and sports including therapeutic and medical benefits to the disabled population.
Artistic Swimming also involves other art forms such as ballet, dance, music, and gymnastics movement combined with swimming. The means of providing such education includes instruction, coaching, training, and (camps) classes. Public performances, exhibitions, coaching, competitions, and study of therapeutic benefits are all services that we encourage and/or provide.
Mission & Goals
Artistic Swimming at any level increases self-esteem, encourages independence and enhances the quality of life for many
athletes with disabilities and special needs.
Our Mission is to promote the sport of artistic swimming amongst our youth and adults with disabilities and special needs. To globally expand artistic swimming to the disabled population and introduce the enrichment, athleticism and therapeutic value that artistic swimming can bring to the lives of many.
Our long term goals are many (see below). However our two most important: are to keep the AWD population active with artistic swimming through outreach and to ultimately help in introducing artistic swimming as a future Paralympic sport in many Countries around the World, including the United States. We hope to assist with submitting artistic swimming as a potential 'demonstration sport' for the 2020 Tokyo Intl Paralympic games and the 2024 France Intl Paralympic Games. Our ultimate goal is to see Artistic Swimming on the sports roster for the 2028 International Paralympic Games in Los Angeles where Synchronized Swimming became an Olympic sport in 1984. Please help us achieve our goals by spreading awareness and encouraging the local aquatics and synchro clubs to accept and train youths and adults with disabilities/special needs.
A note of significant importance is that we cannot forget the dire statistics involving our global population with disabilities & special needs: (cited from the Bay Area Outreach & Recreation 'BORP'program website):
"Children with disabilities are one of the highest at risk groups in this Country, a fact that garners little attention and fewer resources. Government data (USA), paints a bleak outlook:
*A disabled student is twice as likely as his or her non disabled peer to drop out of school, become a pregnant teen, abuse alcohol or drugs.
*A disabled teenage girl is twice as likely to commit suicide as her non disabled peers.
*73% of disabled adult Americans are unemployed".
To improve and reduce the National and even global statistics, we need your help both in physical assistance and/or financially. The help we receive financially will allow us to work towards and achieve our goals as well as meet our mission over the long term. The members and associates who are involved with our Organization are all volunteers. We need the help of additional volunteers to assist with our listed goals below. Financially, all of the proceeds donated to the Organization benefits swimmers and the coaches directly to continue their work of training and traveling to camps, exhibitions and competitions so the sport can continue to grow and gain momentum in the global movement to add artistic swimming to National and International Games for Athletes with Disabilities.
Artistic Swimming is conducive to many of the disabilities due to the buoyancy effects of the water which makes it easier for most people with physical limitations to participate. The comfort of the water and ease of transition to different levels also helps swimmers with intellectual disabilities and special needs. The Synchro AWD Organization supports children and adults with any type of disability (physical/intellectual) and special needs for Artistic swimming. If a person with a disability or special needs are able to and can swim, then they can do artistic swimming. Many coaches do realize the different abilities and levels, but keep in mind it takes years (5 to 8+yrs) to cultivate an elite athlete for Int'l and Paralympic Games. Be ready to make this a 'lifelong' sport for recreation, competition and global change!
1. Introduction of artistic swimming as an 'adaptable sport' to enhance the athletic potential of people with physical and intellectual disabilities, while helping to create new artistic swimming adaptive sport and recreation opportunities for athletes of all disabilities and special needs.
2. Promote the inclusion, relevance and abilities of athletes with disabilities amongst non disabled population.
3. Education, awareness, encouragement and involvement: Coaches, Caregivers, Specialists, Physicians, Therapists and Lay people. Empowering them with the ability to select adaptive sports, such as artistic swimming as an area to focus their competitive, fitness, recreational, and rehabilitative efforts for their athletes and clients. To help break down barriers, stereotypes, fears, and indifference.
4. Identify and promote the benefits of artistic swimming for athletes with disabilities: Improve organizational, leadership & social skills, cognitive & therapeutic benefits, etc all allowing for positive integration and independence in society, while teaching peace, love for humanity and cohesion in our global society.
5. Conduct research and involve practical activities to improve training methods for artistic swimming for the athletes with disabilities.
6. The introduction of innovative techniques aimed at simplifying the training methods for the elements required of artistic swimming.
7. Creation of specific data & disseminating to the public about the issues involving athletes with particular disabilities (intellectual and physical) and how they can and have succeeded with artistic swimming.
8. Informing, involving and including public organizations and mass/social media for the awareness of the growing demand for more adapted sports, particularly artistic swimming and the increasing demands from our population of people with disabilities and special needs globally.