Last week I enjoyed a conversation with Jill Perry who serves as a sport chaplain with women’s sports at the University of Georgia in the USA. She has done a great job there for years and has both broadened her influence with an increasing number of sports and has deepened it with greater impact within each one.
She has recently found opportunities with members of the swimming and diving community and we discussed some unique characteristics of that group of sportspeople. Jill is doing a number of things to grow her understanding of swimming technique and strategy, of swimmers’ approach to their sport and their spiritual influences.
· She’s reading books about swimming.
· She’s taking lessons on swimming technique – in the pool getting a feel for it.
· She’s spending more time with swimmers and asking good questions.
· She’s building relationships of trust with the coaching staff.
For Jill, a volleyball player at heart, it’s not easy to make these adjustments, but she’s doing the right things to learn and to connect with the swimmers. The results of her diligence will no doubt be transformational.