Monson Boys Dominate County ChampionshipsThe Kent County Swimming Championships have reached the halfway stage and the RTW Monson boys are dominating...Read article
We are fortunate to have a great coaching team; our Head Coach, Graham Bassi joined RTW Monson in 2017. Graham is supported by Karen Bradbury, Della Clout, Andrew Jessop and Connie Evans, as well as a number of experienced volunteer coaches and poolside helpers.
Graham has been involved in swimming for just under fifty years as a swimmer, teacher, coach and recently in management and consultancy.
He is known for taking a small club to become one of the leading developmental programmes in the country, where he had a reputation for statistical analysis and planning, which has always been an important part of his coaching. He is committed to achieving high skills in athletes and raising their commitment to the highest level of work that they can achieve.
His first full time coaching position was at Lincoln Vulcans who produced ten swimmers that represented their country, over twenty national champions and broke numerous national records.
Graham says, 'During this time, it was a privilege for me to coach with national teams at European and World levels. I was part of the Sweetenham/Atkinson select coach project that changed the culture of coaching in the UK in early 2000. The one thing that stuck with me from this project was the quote "don’t ever be happy with putting swimmers on the team, it’s always about winning medals". That saying sums up my philosophy.'
At his next club, Bournemouth he had further success at European Youth Olympic level before moving to the British Intensive Training Centre at Swansea. He then moved into a development and mentorship role with British Swimming. 'This role allowed me to use my skills delivering a programme that recommended funding and closely working with podium potential athletes and their coaches. Our highest ranked swimmers included James Guy and Adam Peaty.'
'I believe I have one of the highest achievement level in Age and Youth swimming in Britain not only producing swimmers at junior level but preparing them to compete and achieve on the international stage. My philosophy is to produce the best skilled, aerobically developed athletes that have the mental skills and attitude to progress to their individual full potential. RTW Monson is my final challenge and I look to replicate achievements from the past and to place RTW Monson firmly on the swimming map.'
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Karen is an experienced ASA Level 2 coach and teacher with over 15 years experience teaching and coaching a vast range of abilities. Karen is also the coach at Holmewood House Prep School.
Karen swam for Monson's Top Squad in her youth for about 7 years so is very pleased supporting her old club in a coaching capacity.
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Della is a Level 2 coach and experienced swimming teacher who joined the coaching team in 2014, initially as a volunteer when her eldest child started swimming at Monson. Having coached the Rookies squad on a Monday night, Della is now in charge of our Learn to Swim programme and also works closely with Karen Bradbury helping to coach the Academy squads.
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Andrew started swimming competitively at a young age and by the age of 12 was ranked 1st in the UK for 100m Butterfly. He went to nationals a few times, at first with Sevenoaks and then with his second club Guildford City. He continued training and compete at Guildford until the age of sixteen before leaving swimming to focus on school life. Andrew started teaching swimming at school as a part time job and continued teaching swimming after leaving sixth form. After being approached by Graham Bassi and offered the opportunity to work and learn as an apprentice coach at Monson, he has been coaching at Monson for around a year.
Andrew says, ‘In this short space of time, I believe I have had a successful start; just this year over half of Performance Green achieved county qualifying times and at the Kents we saw some fantastic swims, numerous medals including a gold and even some regional consideration times. I am looking forward to continuing my coaching career here at Monson. I have really enjoyed my time working with the swimmers and working to improve myself as a coach. My goal as a coach is to help swimmers succeed at the highest level, but also to provide the mental and physical strength required to push one’s limits; and above all else; enjoy success.’
To contact Andrew directly please email: Andrewkjessop@hotmail.com
Katie is a former member of RTW Monson and Monson Masters and has recently joined the coaching team to help coach the Learn to Swim section of the club.
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Sacha became a qualified Gym Instructor in 2009, and that same year got a job running a gym in Sevenoaks, where she got involved with coaching gymnastics. By 2014, she had qualified as a Level 2 Womens Artistic Gymnastics Coach, Pre-School Gymnastics Coach and a Level 3 Personal Trainer. She was coaching in a variety of different gyms, including NDGA, Larkfield Leisure Centre and Head Coach at Tunbridge Wells Sports Centre, coaching a variety of different age groups from pre-school up to squad level and leading a Floor and Vault Squad at NDGA.
In 2016 she became a GP Referral Exercise Instructor and had started her own company providing gymnastics classes in schools and personal training from home.
Since 2016, Sacha has been coaching the land training sessions at Tunbridge Wells Sports Centre every Friday evening where her focus is on the swimmers’ core strength, flexibility and shoulder stability.
Darren is an ex Monson swimmer both at age group and masters level, and has competed at national and European level for RTW masters.
He first got involved in swim coaching at lacacs, which was the Olympic legacy program set up and funded by swim England at the Olympic pool in Stratford.
Darren is a level 2 qualified swim coach who was fortunate during his training process to help in the preparation work for some Commonwealth swimmers at Mountbatten Portsmouth and work alongside GB coaches and swimmers at his previous club lacacs.
During his youth became involved in mixed martial arts becoming a black belt in jeet kune do, blue belt in Brazilian jiu jitsu and going on to compete in professional mixed martial arts fighting, during this process he learnt a lot about diet, strength and conditioning, building aerobic capacity, hard work and what is takes to reach the top of your desired field.
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Jazz started swimming competitively at the age of 10 with RTW Monson and during that time she has volunteered within the Swim School and also during coaching sessions.
Now, she has been coaching with the club for over a year predominantly with Junior squad. Having obtained her ASA Level 2 swimming teaching award she has also taught in the Learn to Swim programme within the club on both Monday and Friday evenings, also recently taking over the role as the Swim School Manager. After swimming in Monson's top squad for over 4 years, Jazz now swims for RTW Masters swimming club and achieved a top 10 finish in the 200m freestyle at Masters National Championships