Rotana’s annual swimming competition takes place at Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan

Jay Asser 16:03 09/05/2015
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Fun for all: Swimming is a great way to keep a child’s heart and muscles in a healthy condition.

Get your little ones in the water for Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana’s upcoming annual swimming competition for youngsters.

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Held on Friday, May 15, the venue will host the annual swimming showcase for children ages five to 13, giving the sport’s future stars a chance to display their strokes and skills.

Approximately 80 kids in the competition will have trained for months with Rotana’s head swimming coach, Anas Karkutli, but the races are open to all outside swimmers as well.

The competition will feature three strokes – freestyle, breaststroke and butterfly. Kids can swim 35 or 65 metres in each stroke, or the additional 100m butterfly and 300m freestyle.

“I’m trying to raise the self-esteem and confidence for the kids and put them in the pressure of competition,” Karkutli said.

“You train the kids and prepare them for swimming, but I want to see which kids are the most motivated to do the race. 

“Coaches at my club come and they look for kids and tell me either ‘this kid can be a swimmer’ or ‘these kids are okay, they know how to swim but their body’s not ready for hard training’. 

“It’s very important for the kids also when a lot of people are watching them,” Karkutli added.

“It’s different when they’re swimming alone. Telling them to do one lap in freestyle in training is different than in a real race doing the freestyle.”

Embrace the atmosphere: Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana’s annual swimming comp is a great way to build confidence.

While the races are competitive in nature, the day will also be ano-ther opportunity for children to feel comfortable in the water and embrace a healthy, active lifestyle.

“It’s also about safety,” Karkutli said.

“I always tell families that they’re not just putting your kids in swimming to have fun and train, but the most important thing is safety and how kids act in the water. Also, it’s good for their bodies, good for their heart and good for their muscles.”

The final day to register for the competition is Tuesday, May 12. For Rotana members and the kids training with Karkutli, the cost is free.

For all outside swimmers, the entry fee is Dh50.

Parents can enjoy cool refreshments while their kids swim in the races, which take place in the morning from 09:00 to 11:00.

What: Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana’s annual swimming competition
Where: Khalidiya Palace Rayhaan by Rotana, Abu Dhabi
When: Friday, May 15 from 09:00 to 11:00, with registration closing Tuesday, May 12
Contact: For more information, contact 02 657 0182 or [email protected]

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