LeonLeon Politano, Head Coach

Leon has coached the Westshore Masters since 2007 and previously coached the Victoria Crystal Silver Streaks.  He has been involved with Masters Swimming for over 40 years beginning in the ’70 with the Victoria Masters Swim Club when it was coached by Jock Noble who got him involved in coaching the Coho Swim Club.  After a break of a few years, he rediscovered Masters Swimming when it was suggested that he cross the street from Courts West and try swimming at the old Juan de Fuca pool because he wasn’t  very good at racquet ball and there was a less chance of getting injured which turned out to be a good idea. He swam with the Juan de Fuca Wrecks before joining the Victoria Masters where he swam for a number of years before retiring from teaching and discovering that he no longer needed nor wanted to make the evening drive into the Crystal Pool from Colwood.

During his years of teaching, one of the extracurricular sports he coached was swimming.  A deeper involvement in coaching swimming began with his involvement with Special Olympics Victoria and VCSS recruited him to be their coach in 2003 and from 2007 to 2010 he coached both VCSS and WSM.

Leon has a long history with MSABC, being a board member for many years and has been the person responsible the sanctioning of MSABC meets for almost 20 years.  He is also an SNC level 5 “master official”, recognized with the BC Swim Official of the Year in 2013, and can often be seen on deck may weekends at Saanich Commonwealth Place refereeing age group meets.  Coaching certification includes Special Olympics, the “old” NCCP level 2, level 2 US Masters Swimming, and has completed the ASCA levels 1 and 2.  He has also completed the modules for NCCP level 3 plus modules on coaching Indigenous Athletes and the LGBTQ athletes.

He believes that swimming is about efficacy and efficiency and enjoys coaching athletes to be the best swimmers that they can be.  To paraphrase Stephen Covey, “Coach with the end in mind.”  His workouts are designed to challenge and motivate, encourage swimmers to get out of their comfort zone, and to provide a safe environment for learning and socializing to take place.