The TCU swimming and diving team took to the sands of Coronado Island, off the coast of San Diego, Calif., to go through Navy SEAL training as a team-building experience last week.
Head coach of the TCU swimming and diving team Richard Sybesma said he thought the training would be a good team-builder for the swimmers and divers after visiting a naval base during a swim convention in May.
The main theme of the training was leadership and becoming a better team and teammate, TCU swimming and diving team member Ryker Saunders said.
“I think the tougher the activity is and the more we push through it together as a team, the closer we become,” sophomore chemistry major Saunders said.
The team carried logs, lifted tires, climbed across a rope, went in the water and crawled through sand, Sybesma said.
For Saunders, the toughest part was carrying the logs. The team split into groups and carried 300 to 400 pound logs over their shoulders, he said.
“It was one of the toughest things I’ve seen any team go through," Sybesma said.
It was surprising to see the Navy SEALs instructors give the co-ed members equally difficult physical tasks, Saunders said.
“They pushed us to the limit,” he said. “Absolutely.”
When the team left the training, they were better as a team and as individuals, Sybesma said. The training focused on leadership, as the team is only as strong as its weakest link.
“They could get on the block or diving board now and know that they’re tougher than the person next to them because of the experience they went through,” he said.
After going through training, officially becoming a Navy SEAL might be in Saunders future, he said.
“I love doing stuff like that: obstacle courses, drills, training,” he said. “I could definitely see myself joining the armed forces.”