Kirkcaldy teenager Erin comes through testing time to take Scottish title

Kirkcaldy teenager Erin Taylor has finally found her best form after a testing time post-lockdown.

Kirkcaldy teenage swimming champ, Erin Taylor. (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)
Kirkcaldy teenage swimming champ, Erin Taylor. (Pic: Fife Photo Agency)

The 16-year old had national titles to her name prior to the pandemic but admits that she struggled initially when she first returned.

However, after working hard with her coach, Ian Lewis, the fifth year pupil at Balwearie High School has recently broken a string of records at the Lang Toun’s Fins Swimming Club and is the Scottish 17/18 years champion at 200m breaststroke and number five in the UK.

"When I first came back my rivals had been training throughout lockdown so it took me a bit of time, a lot of training and a lot of tears after races if I didn't perform well,” she says.

“It took a lot of motivation but when you start seeing results it gets easier to work hard in training.

“My coach said I had to slow down to go faster. We worked a lot on technique then started building speed on top of that.

“I had to stay very patient but now we're starting to see the results.

“Before covid I was 13 and just wanting to race all the time, not really thinking about the proper mindset behind things.

“I didn't think much about my technique, just about swimming fast, but as you get a bit older things like eating and sleeping come into it a bit more.”

Coach Lewis, a volunteer with the club, says Erin has fully engaged with her training and is now getting her just rewards.

"Everything she does in training she does to the best of her ability,” he said.

“During lockdown it was quite a challenge for us as a club because we had no water time at all.

“Erin did a lot of running and things like that but no typical training.

"When we finally got back in the water we reset and focused more on the technical side.

“We really looked at the training sets we were doing and Erin worked really hard.

“We did a lot of technical work on her strokes but initially she fought against it because what she had been doing before had worked really well.

“The first six months or so after getting back in the water were testing for her, there was a lot of "it was working so what are you changing it?"

“But now she's grown and matured so she had to change some things.

"A lot of effort was put into that and the results have shown over the last few competitions that she's done that she's just getting better and better.

“A lot of that is down to Erin showing trust in the process and how we were trying to guide her into being a better swimmer, not just a harder working swimmer.”

He added: “It's all come together very well.”

Lewis says Erin should aim for the Commonwealth Games in four years but in the meantime she is concentrating on the upcoming Scottish Swimming in Aberdeen and the British Swmming Championships in Sheffield, both taking place in July.

She says: I'll just work my hardest all the time and see where the competitions take me.

“Ian has been really patient with me, he deserves a lot of credit.

“I'm really grateful to have a coach as dedicated as he is.”