ST. JOHN’S — Intense training sessions in the pool day after day have taken a toll on the body of Memorial University Sea-Hawks swimmer Dayna Hogan.
The 21-year-old Kippens native was hoping to post some best times in her fifth and final year of eligibility with the Sea-Hawks, but she’s decided to rest her weary body with intentions of coming back stronger than ever next year to cap off her Atlantic University Sport (AUS) swim career.
Hogan made the decision to pull the plug on another competitive swim season after experiencing pain and discomfort in her lower back and hips.
“Just being tired and having bad posture sometimes and everything just added up,”Hogan said of the punishment her body has been through as an elite student-athlete.
Captain of a Sea-Hawks team that embraced a group of fresh faces back in September, Hogan will continue to swim with the Sea-Hawks at home but her training won’t be near as intense as what she was used to when she had a berth in the AUS championships on her radar in what she thought was her last year of eligibility. She can use next year as her fifth year because she never competed in two college invitationals or the AUS champs this year. She participated in an invitational meet before Christmas, but won’t be swimming when the Sea-Hawks compete in another invitational next week, and the AUS championship isn’t for another month so she is free to return next season for her fifth year.
She has been trying to get herself back to 100 per cent with physiotherapy and yoga, and she plans on working her butt off over the summer to get fit as a fiddle for the fifth year.
“Over the summer I’m going to work on it and try to get it feeling better,” she said.
She will fulfill her role as captain even though she won’t be joining the team on the road and expects to be in the leadership role next year when she returns.
However, she can’t help but be disappointed that this year she will won’t be with the group at the AUS championships.
“It’s kind of sad because it will be the first year in five years that I haven’t gone to AUS champs,” she said. “I’ll be sad that everybody else is there and I’m not. But, I think it’s the better decision I think.”
She expects to graduate from MUN in the spring with an engineering degree in hand and next year the plan is to pursue courses that will help her obtain a Masters degree in economics. She is hoping her scaled-back training schedule will afford her some extra study time with final exams only around the corner.
She has found it hectic keeping up with the demands placed on a student-athlete in a tough program.
“It’s a lot of projects and group work, so it takes a lot of time,” she said. “Everybody in that class is pretty excited to be finished this year.”
“It might be a little easier to balance, probably,” she said of being able to focus more time and energy on her studies now.