Entering her freshman year at Seymour High School, Alexandra Helt knew she wanted to get involved in a sport, so she chose to join the swim team.

“I wanted to do a different sport,” Helt said. “I remember growing up and watching my sister swim. I knew she loved it, and I thought about it, and I decided to try it. I ended up loving it, too.”

Helt swam the 50 freestyle in the Hoosier Hills Conference meet this past Saturday, recording a time of 29.70.

She also has swum in the 100 freestyle, 100 butterfly, medley relay, and 200 freestyle and 400 free relays. She said she likes the 50 because it is a short race.

“I like sprinting,” Helt said. “It gets you out of the water quicker, and I know how to pace myself. The start is very important.”

One of the areas Helt looks to improve on the rest of the season is her turn. She admitted that sometimes she misses the wall during her races.

By sectional, Helt said, she hopes to break 29 seconds. She said she thinks she has a good chance to accomplish that goal because the team has began its taper where it swims less yards in practice in order to peak for the sectional.

“Dave (Boggs, head coach) has been pushing me to do that,” Helt said. “I’ve known Dave since I was little because of my sister. He has made me a more confident person, more open and more athletic.”

During taper, swimmers have more time to rest. The goal is to have improved energy and strength for the postseason races.

During meets, Helt said, she prefers the relays over her individual events.

“I don’t like being by myself,” she said. “I like having other people there. It’s more fun to have your friends with you swimming.”

Helt said she likes the way the dual meets are set up with a girls race and then a boys race. That way, the swimmers have more rest time between events.

For the senior, practice is a time to decompress from school.

“Practice relieves a lot of stress, and I forget about everything else,” she said.

Dedication is key to becoming a successful swimmer. The swim teams practice three mornings a week, beginning at 6 o’clock. The team also has afternoon practices on Mondays and Wednesdays.

“We lift on Monday mornings, do the P90X on Wednesday mornings and swim on Friday mornings,” Helt said.

Helt said you have to have a good positive outlook on any sport you play in order to succeed.

“You have to have a good attitude and just think about your race, and don’t worry about who is in the other the other lanes,” she said. “You have to believe in yourself.”

Outside the pool and school, Helt acts as an officer in the school’s Latin Club.

“I’ve enjoyed it here,” Helt said. “I’ve learned a lot about life and enjoyed all my friends.”

Following high school, Helt plans to attend college to become an English as a second language teacher.

In the pool

Family: Parents, Paul and Emma Helt; siblings, Traci, Suzi and Peyton

Sport: Swimming, four years

Athletics honors: Getting to swim in the sectional last season

Organizations: Key Club, Latin Club

Attending SHS: “I’ve enjoyed it here. I’ve been an officer in Latin Club, and I enjoyed that. I’ve learned a lot about life and enjoyed all my friends.”

Plans after high school: Attend college to become an English as a second language teacher

Home meets; “I like them because I know the pool and everything, and I feel more comfortable here.”

Favorite away pool: Floyd Central

Favorite food: Pasta

Favorite TV show: “American Horror Story”

Favorite movie: “P.S. I Love You”

Favorite athlete: Missy Franklin

Favorite book: Harry Potter series

Favorite quote: “You can’t put a limit on anything. The more you dream, the farther you get.” — Michael Phelps

Author photo
Arv Koontz is a sports correspondent for The (Seymour) Tribune.