Aquaman Vietnam a playground for swimming enthusiasts: triathlon athlete

By Phong Van   October 20, 2023 | 05:56 pm PT
Pham Thuy Vi, a top triathlon athlete in Vietnam and coach of HCMC triathlon team, said Aquaman Vietnam is a breath of fresh air to the national sports movement, creating a momentum for high-performance athletics.
Kim Tuyen (wearing glasses) and Dinh Duan (far right) took a photo with the 32nd SEA Games medal. Photo by Thuy Vi

Nguyen Thi Kim Tuyen (from L, 3rd) and Vu Dinh Duan (far right) take a photo with the 32nd SEA Games medals. Photo by Pham Thuy Vi

The 42-year-old coach will be making her first attempt at swimming and running in DNSE Aquaman Vietnam, held in Phan Thiet on Oct. 29. Despite being a familiar face in triathlon tournaments, she has competed sparingly in the past two years, dedicating most of her time to coaching, business, and injury recovery. Aquaman Vietnam will add another exciting chapter to her sporting journey.

With almost 20 years of coaching experience, DNSE Aquaman Vietnam is the first time Vi will lead eight talented students from the Ho Chi Minh City triathlon team to attend a biathlon tournament. Among them are Vu Dinh Duan, the reigning champion of Aquaman Vietnam, and Nguyen Thi Kim Tuyen, a swimmer who broke eight national records in 2009, and now competes in multiple sports.

The former assistant coach of the Singapore youth swimming team believes that amateur tournaments help uncover talents and attract strong athletes from all over the country. The participation of amateur athletes serves as a catalyst for the advancement of professional sports, she said.

Pham Thuy Vi participates in the running race in Thailand in 2022. Photo by Pham Thuy Vi

Pham Thuy Vi participates in a race in Thailand in 2022. Photo courtesy of Pham Thuy Vi

Currently, under the guidance of Pham Thuy Vi, the group of Ho Chi Minh City triathlon athletes practice running three times and swimming three times per week with high concentration. The team focuses on two essential skills for sea swimming: sighting and drafting. Sighting helps athletes orient themselves during the race, stay close to the crowd and choose the shortest path.

To handle waves, breaststroke swimming is the preferred method. Quick transition between breaststroke and crawl help maintain speed and navigate waves.

"Athletes have to compete among thousands of participants, facing numerous uncontrollable factors. This exceptional and significant experience is pivotal for their improvement," said Vi.

Pham Thuy Vi practices swimming every day. Photo by Pham Thuy Vi

Pham Thuy Vi practices swimming every day. Photo courtesy of Pham Thuy Vi

With almost three decades dedicating to sports, Vi has witnessed many ups and downs in Vietnamese swimming. At the age of 15, she was an exceptional talent in Ho Chi Minh City. She became a coach from 2004 to 2011. In 2012, she went to Singapore for training, and worked as an assistant for the national youth swimming team. Recently, she returned to Vietnam to contribute to the country's sport movement.

In 2019, she won the Iron Man 70.3 Vietnam with a record of 5 hours, 33 minutes, and 50 seconds. That same year, she represented Vietnam in three sports at the SEA Games.

With her experience leading a successful team in Singapore, she said the movement sport like Aquaman Vietnam will lay a solid foundation in sports, bringing more new talents and the next generation.

Vi will participate in 2 km swim and 21 km run at DNSE Aquaman Vietnam.

"As both a coach and an athlete, I understand what my students truly need to move forward, and I want to be there with them through both success and failure," she said.

Vi currently spends a significant amount of time teaching swimming classes with focuses on proper technique and nutrition. "I want to help very athlete experience magical moments in sports while competing at their peak physical and mental condition," she said.

Swimming track of Aquaman Vietnam 2022. Photo byAV

Swimming track of Aquaman Vietnam 2022. Photo by AV

The second Aquaman Vietnam tournament will take place at NovaWorld Phan Thiet, attracting 1,500 athletes. The race venue, with its extensive coastline, are carefully evaluated by local swimmers and is ideal for athletes of all levels with calm and warm water.

The participants will have the opportunity to run through the most breathtaking areas of NovaWorld Phan Thiet. Entry to the water park are free for all participants.

The tournament features four competition distances: Aquakid for children aged 6 to 10 (200 m swim and 1 km run); Sprint Aqua (500 m swim and 5 km run), Half Aqua (1 km swim and 10 km run); and the longest distance, Aquaman (2 km swim and 21 km run).

If you're interested, register at the link.

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