Student represents Kenya National Team at CANA Swimming Championships | Aga Khan Academies

Student represents Kenya National Team at CANA Swimming Championships

30 November 2018

From 14 November to 17 November, year 7 student Ivan Hart participated in the Confédération Africaine de Natation (CANA) Zone III Swimming Championships in Khartoum, Sudan where he won all gold medals in the events he participated in.

Ivan Hart receiving a gold medal at CANA in Khartoum, Sudan.“I like the competition and the challenges,” Ivan said. “I like pushing myself and testing my limits (when it comes to swimming). I also like meeting swimmers from different countries and seeing what I need to do to become a better swimmer.”

Seven countries took part in the competition, which included Djibouti, South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania, Sudan, South Sudan and Uganda. Ivan was part of the Kenya National Team, which took fourth place by points and second place in terms of medals, with the second highest number of gold medals.

“I had been selected to go to CANA Zone IV in March this year but I could not go due to a prior commitment,” Ivan said. “This time I made sure that I would participate and swim for Kenya, and it was a great honour to be selected to represent my country. I felt really proud when I was receiving my medals and had the Kenyan flag on a big screen behind me. It also felt really good knowing that I broke my previous times and set all new personal best times.”

Ivan with his teammates representing the Kenya National Team.Being one of the youngest swimmers in his team, Ivan said he gained a lot of experience through the competition.

“(I had) more experienced teammates helping and guiding (me), and I learnt a lot on that trip in competitive and organisational areas,” Ivan said. “I learned how to take care of myself, manage my time, how to cope in an unknown environment and how to be independent. I also learned to collaborate with swimmers of different ages coming from different parts of Kenya, with team coaches who were not mine, and with a new competition format.”

Ivan said he has been swimming since he was 1 year old and has been swimming competitively for over six years.

“Swimming if a life skill and everyone needs to learn to swim,” Ivan said. “The mentorship and confidence I got from Coach Malik and Coach Rama allowed me to venture into competitive swimming, which I really enjoy and hope to continue.”

With his big win in this competition, Ivan said he has numerous other swimming competitions planned for the future.

“My coach and I identified the areas I need to work on, we set new targets and my training program is now set to achieve these goals,” Ivan said.

Ivan with all of his gold medals at CANA.For his future, Ivan said swimming will definitely be a part of it.

“My ultimate goal is to swim in the (Fédération Internationale de Natation) World Championships and Olympic Games,” Ivan said. “I hope to achieve this goal through dedication, focus and hard work.”

By Anusha Lalani