The King of Swim

A look into the rise of junior Aidan King in the swimming program


Connor Niebrugge

Junior Aidan King waits to swim at the De Smet Invitational meet at St Peters Rec-Plex.

Swimming has always been his favorite sport. He lived and breathed it. For as long as he can remember, he wanted to be a swimmer like his older sister. He joined the swim team as early as he could at age 6. Despite his great love for swimming, walking into his first practice of freshman year it was obvious to the coaches that there wasn’t much to be desired.

“He was very pale and chubby, like a lightbulb,” Assistant Swim Team Coach Coach Xi said. “He wasn’t fast, he was like any other swimmer.”

This “lightbulb” freshman was Aidan King. Now in his junior year, Aidan is swimming a 22.52 second 50-yard freestyle, the 8th best in class 2 of state, and is a lead scorer on the team. Beyond his obvious statistical importance to the team, he also has become an inspiration and leader to the other swimmers.

“I definitely think people on the swim team look at Aidan and just try harder,” sophomore swimmer Gabe Lasek said. “Because he tries his butt off, and he gets results, I think people respect him for it. And if they don’t they definitely should”

But this average freshman became a swimmer who commanded so much respect and had spirit and determination to help lead the team.

“I think Aidan has a goal to reach,” Coach Xi said, “he will always have a goal and will have time set up to reach. He works very hard to reach that goal and he is always asking me, ‘What’s wrong with my technique, how can I work on my technique.’”

King agrees that his mindset has become a huge part of his swimming.

“I don’t think I could have swam these times as a freshman, but I think your mindset going into it is huge,” King said. “I spend a majority of my time just thinking about swimming now, and I definitely did not do that freshman year. It’s just so much mental work and thinking.”

Aidan has turned himself into a totally different swimmer and an integral part of the swim team because of his determination to be the best.

“Right now my goal is to make the top 8 at state and get myself a medal,” King said, “and after that, I hope to break down into the 21s and break the De Smet record, hopefully this year, maybe next year if I can’t. Those are my two goals right now.”

His determination, mindset, and goals are what make him the swimmer he is.

“Aidan works so hard,” Coach Xi said. “He has a goal, and he works hard to reach it.”