ABOUT

Annemarie Dressler

BSc, BA (HMS) (Hons)Registered practicing Biokineticist (BASA)Open water and Masters swimming coach (ASCA level 3)

Although my early education in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics prepared me for a career in science, my passion has always been swimming. I opened my first swim school called the Secunda Tadpoles in 1992 and since then I have always been involved in swimming and coaching in one way or another. In 2006 I returned to UP as a full-time student to complete a four-year degree in Biokinetics.

I qualified top of my class and was awarded the BASA top Biokinetic student award in 2010. I stayed on at TUKS in 2011 to lecture on a part-time basis and presented courses on swim coaching, sport psychology and coaching children. I have done research on sighting during open water swims and the incidence of shoulder injuries in master’s swimmers. I am a member of BASA (Biokinetic Association of SA) and ASCA (American Swimming Coaches Association).

I was introduced to Masters swimming in 1997 and this started me swimming again after an almost 20-year break. In 2005 I broke my first SA records in various masters’ backstroke and breaststroke events in my age group. I was also placed 6th in the FINA world rankings in the 200m backstroke. My whole world fell apart when I was diagnosed later that same year with breast cancer. I have since battled and conquered a reoccurrence of the disease. Through all of the challenges that life threw my way, I had one enduring passion that kept me going. My love for swimming…

In all my years of struggling to find a swim coach for myself, I realised the need for individualised coaching and started an email-based coaching service for Masters swimmers in 2005. I currently provide an individualised coaching and strength conditioning service to triathletes, masters’ and open water swimmers across the world. Being a registered and practicing Biokineticist and through my own experiences I understand the illness, injury, and the aging process and this has helped me to design specialised training schedules for my swimmers. I also do shoulder pre- and rehabilitation with swimmers in my Biokinetic practice.

In September 2013 I started an adult swim squad based in Faerie Glen, Pretoria. The squad has grown to 70 swimmers since its inception. Due to the growth in the business, I have appointed former World cup swimmer Chrisna Luus as an assistant coach.

My swimmer’s achievements for the 2012/2013 swimming season include:
  • 1 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze medal in the 2012 Masters World championships
  • 3 gold medals at the Maccabi Games 2013
  • 2 gold and 2 silver medals at the World Transplant Games 2013
  • 3 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • 7 swimmers broke 13 South Africa masters LC&SC records
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2013/2014 swimming season include:
  • 3 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 31
  • Provincial records bettered – 67

11 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs

42 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (11% of all participants)

  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC -69
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 45
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 36
  • 1 swimmer completed the Robben Island relay challenge
  • 1 swimmer completed the 8 miles at Midmar
  • 1 swimmer completed the half Iron Man
  • 1 swimmer was placed first in her age group at Midmar
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2014/2015 swimming season include:
  • 1 gold, 2 silver and 4 bronze medals in the 2015 Masters World Championships in Montreal
  • 5 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 23
  • Provincial records bettered – 60

13 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs

56 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (12% of all participants)

  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC -66
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 49
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 24
  • 1 swimmer completed the half Iron Man
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2015/2016 swimming season include:
  • 1 gold and 2 bronze medals in the 2016 Masters World Championships in Russia
  • 7 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 19
  • Provincial records bettered – 14

15 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs

41 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (9% of all participants)

  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC -66
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 45
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 36
  • 2 swimmers completed the 8 miles at Midmar
  • 2 swimmers completed the Iron Man
  • 2 swimmers completed the half Iron Man
  • 9 swimmers completed the Polar Bear swim
  • 2 swimmers were placed first in their age groups at Midmar, 1 second and 3 third.
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2016/2017 swimming season include:
  • 2 gold medals in the 2017 Masters World Championships in Budapest
  • 2 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 6
  • Provincial records bettered – 17

9 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs

28 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (6% of all participants)

  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 37
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 28
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 21
  • 1 swimmer completed the 8 miles at Midmar
  • 2 swimmers completed the Iron Man
  • 1 swimmer completed the half Iron Man
  • 1 swimmer was placed first in their age groups at Midmar, 1 second and 1 third.
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2017/2018 swimming season include:
  • 2 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 3
  • Provincial records bettered – 20
  • 9 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs
  • 49 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (9% of all participants)
  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 51
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 41
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 45
  • 11 swimmers completed the 8 miles at Midmar
  • 3 swimmers completed the Iron Man
  • 3 swimmers completed the half-Iron Man
  • 1 swimmer was placed first in their age group at Midmar and 3 third
  • 4 swimmers completed the Robben Island to Blouberg 7,4km crossing in 14deg water in skins
  • 5 swimmers completed the Robben Island to Blouberg 7,4km crossing in wetsuits
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2018/2019 swimming season include:
  • 3 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 4
  • Provincial records bettered – 36
  • 17 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs
  • 43 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (10% of all participants)
  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC&OW – 52
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 35
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 38
  • 9 swimmers completed the 8 miles at Midmar
  • 5 triathletes completed the Iron Man
  • 3 triathletes completed the half-Iron Man
  • 2 swimmers were placed first in their age group at Midmar, 1 second and 1 third
My swimmer’s achievements for the 2019/2020 swimming season include:
  • 2 swimmers swam SAMS qualifying times placing them in the FINA top 10 listing
  • SA records SC&LC bettered– 2
  • Provincial records bettered – 25
  • 19 swimmers competed in the SA short course champs
  • 77 swimmers competed in the SA long course champs (21% of all participants)
  • 1st places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 103
  • 2nd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 86
  • 3rd places achieved at SA Masters champs SC&LC – 53
  • 13 swimmers completed the 8 miles at Midmar
  • 3 triathletes completed the Iron Man
  • 1 Biathle SA age group winner
  • 3 swimmers were placed first in their age group at Midmar, 2 second and 1 third

My coaching program has to date delivered 3 Masters World champions, 10 FINA Masters top 10 swimmers and 82 national masters age group champions. I have truly been blessed to work with tremendously talented swimmers. However, some of my proudest moments were when my swimmers completed their first open water swims – one season after completing the Learn to swim program, swam personal best times or just arrived for training at the open-air squad pool at 5am in the winter!