Young swimmer shines in synchronized style

To say Kyra McMurray took to synchronized swimming like a duck takes to water would be an understatement.

The 10-year-old Red Deer girl recently brought home the gold medal at the Western Canadian Championships in the figures competition and the solo routine, topping things off with a gold medal in the championship round.

By the way, this is her first year in synchronized swimming and she seems to have a grasp of what it takes to be successful.

“I kind of like swimming to the music because it makes me happy,” she explained.

Kyra spends the summer in the pool with the Marlins Swim Club and after going to a swim camp last summer she decided to try synchronized swimming in the winter, according to her mom.

“She knew some people who were in the club from before and wanted to do the swim camp,” said Louise. “The coach recognized some potential in her then and talked us into joining the club.”

Strength and endurance are two qualities which competitive and synchronized swimmers can benefit from and Kyra thinks her gymnastics background has given her a bit of an edge, especially on the synchro side of things.

“My splits are really good, I’m flat in both legs now. And it makes you stronger too.”

Kyra’s mom says she’s not sure where all this athletic talent comes from even though she was a competitive swimmer herself, “many moons ago” as she phrased it.

“I know nothing about synchronized swimming at all,” she admits. “I didn’t help her in that way.”

She is very proud of her young daughter and keeps her involvement limited to cheering and driving her from event to event.

Kyra likes the solo events because she can tap into her creative side in order to come up with a routine set to music but she is certainly open to taking on another facet of this sport she has fallen in love with.

“My coach is thinking of putting my friend and I in a duet next year.”

On the surface it appears Kyra has faced and met all the challenges of her sport but there is an area where she thinks she has to work hard at.

That would be making sure she stays high in the water during her routines, something the judges look for.

Then there is that gel swimmers put in their hair before a competition and Kyra says getting that stuff out is tough but it’s something you can’t do without.

“One time I was at practice and my cap was off and my hair fell in my face and I couldn’t see.”

But she is certainly seeing her way clear to quite a career in the pool at this point.