Parents Andy and Joanne Coppen originally introduced their children to swimming to ensure they had the necessary skills to keep them safe in the water. Their children Ella (14), Imogen (10) and Quinn (8) have taken to the sport so well however that they now train several times at week with Derby Phoenix swimming club and represent the club on the competition circuit.
Ella started swimming when she was six and, since joining Derby Phoenix, has gone from strength to strength. She is now in the A squad – regularly picking up county and Midlands’ breaststroke medals.
Both Imogen and Quinn started swimming when they were four and are now in Derby Phoenix’s C squad. Imogen started in D squad when she was seven and, after having lessons at Lonsdale Pool, Quinn became the youngest swimmer to join D squad at the age of six.
All three love swimming and have their sights set on greater things in the sport – inspired by the success of Team GB at the Rio Olympics. Ella said: “There is always something new to aim for with personal bests and, above all, it is great fun. I would love to try to get to the 2024 Olympics but I know it will take a lot of hard work.”
Imogen agreed: “Swimming keeps you fit and you can learn different techniques to get better and better.”
And Quinn concluded: “I like that it is competitive but I have a lot of friends so it is good fun.”
Joanne said: “We have embraced swimming as a family and, as well as supporting the children, are involved in Derby Phoenix with coaching and welfare roles.”
Andy continued: “The club has a great atmosphere with the older ones supporting the younger swimming. As well as being competitive, everyone gets on really well and there is a good social scene.
“Swimming has given us so much as a family, we are now just hoping that Lonsdale are able to find a site to build a bigger pool in this area so that there is more capacity for training and hopefully encourage more families to get involved in swimming.”