On Thursday, October 2, 2014, Swim Ontario in collaboration with multiple partners will launch the Ontario Swimming Academy, located at the Toronto Pan Am Sport Centre (TPASC), a Legacy of the Toronto Pan/Parapan American Games.

More than one hundred and thirty-five targeted athletes and their coaches have been invited to participate in the Academy programs as 2020 and beyond Olympic podium “hopefuls” program for swimmers aged 13 to 17. The program will initially consist of inviting 10-15 swimmers and their coaches to a series of very specific three day camps designed to educate and enhance their competitive acumen.

The Academy, will be a collaborative partnership with multiple stakeholders. In particular, Swim Ontario, The Ontario Ministry of Tourism Culture and Sport (MTCS), Canadian Sport Institute-Ontario (CSIO), Own the Podium (OTP), and Swimming Canada (SNC).

CSIO’s Director, High Performance Sport, Tommy Wharton, states “Congratulations to Swim Ontario and Swimming Natation Canada for this innovative partnership. We believe that through the integration of sport science and sport medicine into the daily training environment, and elite coaching and technical leadership delivered in this new world class legacy facility there will be unparalleled opportunities for the next generation of international performers. The Ontario Swimming Academy has a strong vision to be a world leader and we look forward to supporting the next generation of athletes and coaches that will represent Canada on the international stage.”

"In conjunction with our performance partners, OTP is pleased to strategically invest in the Ontario Swimming Academy with the objective of developing Ontario athletes towards Olympic and Paralympic podium performances in 2020 and beyond. The Toronto Pan Am Sport Centre will be critical in creating a world-leading daily training environment for the targeted athletes identified in the Ontario Swimming Academy” said Mark Hahto, Director, Summer Sport, Own the Podium.

This innovative project, will focus solely on providing these identified athletes and their coaches the education, experience and tools they need to successfully aim for International and Olympic podium performances towards 2020 and beyond.

“We welcome this development for swimming in Ontario and Canada, which will complement the work done by our High Performance Centre in Ontario. The Ontario Swimming Academy working alongside the Swimming Canada High Performance Centre will provide a link in the pathway for the development of competitive swimmers. We are focused and committed to ensuring the world class daily training environment at the Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre will help lead to world class performances at the Olympic level” said Swimming Canada High Performance Director John Atkinson.

It will be led by former Olympic Coach and current Provincial Mentor Coach Dean Boles of Swim Ontario, with additional partner services provided by both CSI-O sport scientists and Swimming Canada National Centre and National Team guest coaches.

“At the upcoming Pan and Para Pan American Games at the new Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre (TPASC - July & August) we are about to take on Brazil, and of course the #1 team in the world – the USA. But we’re taking them on at home in Ontario and in Toronto, with the event to be broadcast across the country and all of Canada’s eyes on us. The influx of new aquatic infrastructure has not been observed in this province in over 30 years and creates opportunities that require creativity and focus to leverage their advantages. The development of the Ontario Swimming Academy at the TPASC, in partnership with the National Swimming Centre – Ontario, and all our performance partners, this is an opportunity for our Ontario athletes to shine and demonstrate their abilities on an international scale. Our support and success is pivotal. Dean Boles is absolutely the right person to lead the Ontario Swimming Academy through its infancy stages. As a former Olympic Coach, with a long history of elite athlete development, Dean is the ideal person to build a solid foundation and long term vision for the Academy”, said John Vadeika, Executive Director of Swim Ontario.

Ontario Swimming Academy Coach Dean Boles added, “This is a very exciting time for Sport in Canada and especially here in Ontario with the 2015 Pan Am and Para Pan Am Games next year. Opportunity and Excellence will go hand in hand with the legacy of the games and this is evident with the outstanding facilities in particular TPASC and the co-located Canadian Sport Institute Ontario. Swim Ontario is motivated to do their part and the Ontario Swimming Academy is one of those initiatives with the support and collaboration of our Performance Partners that we believe will make a difference as we move toward 2020 and 2024. Personally I’m fortunate to be part of the momentum of the High Performance Sport Culture around this legacy and being surrounded by outstanding people who are helping this come to fruition.”

For further information, please call the Swim Ontario office at 416-426-7220 or e-mail to info@swimontario.com