This column intends to spotlight student athlete-artists from each of SCAD’s sports teams, no matter how well-established or accomplished. This week’s piece features a members of the SCAD Savannah women’s swimming team. 

My mom was a swimmer, which is probably why I enjoy watching the 400-meter butterflies and 600-meter breast-stroke relays during the summer Olympics. There’s no physical contact! The sport itself is all about the swimmer’s form and their perception of speed and time. Senior industrial design student Cadie Crow, a member of the SCAD Savannah swimming team, understands this much better than I can as an onlooker.

Crow started swimming competitively in middle school. When she moved to Buford, Georgia, she got into summer league swimming and kept at it after her coaches encouraged her to pursue it.

SCAD District

Image courtesy of SCAD Athletics.

Crow continued swimming throughout high school so when it was time to apply for college, she, like many of SCAD’s athlete-artists, researched schools that tailored to both her artistic and athletic interests.  

“I did not know SCAD had a swim team,” Crow said. “I was ‘iffy’ about an art and design school at first, but when I found out they had the swim team, it was a win-win.”

Swimmers, in my opinion, have the hardest morning workouts: jumping into a cold pool. Crow said she still struggles to find the motivation to wake up at the crack of dawn to swim some chilly laps.

“It’s definitely a mental game, but the satisfaction of reaching a goal you set for yourself is so rewarding,” Crow said. “Swim teams usually practice in the early morning. Then some days we practice in the morning and at night. We do this because our competitions are organized with prelim races in the morning and then finals at night. Our practices are split up sometimes by sprinting, distance, Stroke, Freestyle or IM (individual medley).”

Though SCAD’s swim team is not as prominent as, say, the equestrian team, Crow said she has been able to build a social circle with her teammates.

“I love the social aspect of swimming and the friendships that are built from being on the team,” Crow said. “It’s really different because guys and girls practice together so there is an opportunity to be pushed to get faster.”

Studying industrial design involves a heavy workload and Crow believes balance is the key to success for student athlete-artists. She actually finds it easier to manage her time when she’s in swim season because it forces her to focus on getting her work done before she travels for swim meets or morning practices.

“Our coach recently said it is easier to give one-hundred percent in practice and one-hundred percent in school, and not sixty percent or twenty percent in one,” Crow said. “It really teaches you dedication and motivation in your work and in yourself.”

Swimming affords athletes the perk of a life-long practice. It provides a vigorous workout in addition to a relaxing, muscle-relieving hobby. Crow said she plans to “just keep swimming” after she graduates this year.

Crow and her team will compete today at the University of Tampa at 4 p.m., followed by a meet on Saturday against Keiser University.

“Our team is doing really well this year,” Crow said. “The previous year we got second at nationals and the year before we won. We are hoping for a win on the boys and girls side at nationals this year.”

Students can follow Crow and her teammates throughout their packed season on Instagram and the SCAD Athletics homepage.

Written by Emilie Kefalas.