Profiles, Stories

Women in Sports: Exceptional Chinoy Swimmers in the Fast Lane

As time progresses, more and more women venture into the world of sports─ proving that women can be as strong, if not stronger, than men.  With the constant push for gender equality, female athletes continuously prove how their gender should not be seen as an obstacle in thriving in competitive sports. Representing strong and empowered women among us, here are 4 Female Chinoy Swimmers who have been making their mark in the sport of swimming at the UAAP.

 

1) Chloe Daos of Ateneo de Manila University

National swimmer Kirsten Chloe Daos is currently the most decorated swimmer in the UAAP. Making waves even before competing in the collegiate league, Daos is arguably one of the Philippines’ finest.

Source: https://sports.abs-cbn.com/uaap/news/2019/10/21/uaap-82-ateneo-snags-third-straight-women-s-swimming-title-62393

For Daos, swimming was like love at first sight. She recalled, “I used to be afraid of the water so my parents enrolled me in swimming lessons under CAL Swim School. After my first session, I immediately fell in love with the water and couldn’t be apart from it since then.” Fast forward to this day, she is now one of the most well-known swimmers in the country. Aside from representing the Philippines in various international competitions, she had also gained numerous titles in the UAAP such as the Season 80 Rookie of the Year, UAAP Athlete of the Year, and three-time Women’s Swimming MVP. 

Her exceptional performance in Season 82, winning all seven of her events, has truly helped the Ateneo women’s swimming team win its third-straight championship. When asked what else we can expect from her and the team next season, she said “our best efforts and hopefully, another championship.”

 

2) Xiandi Chua of De La Salle University

Another national swimmer is Palarong Pambansa standout Xiandi Chua. Chua made her international debut as early as 2014 in the 38th SEA Age Group Swimming Championships. Since then, she has been a promising athlete to watch out for.

Photography by: Evan Grabador

Her whole swimming career started when she was 4 years old. She narrated, “my parents enrolled me to a learn-to-swim class just for safety reasons. As a kid, I just really enjoyed being in the water and over time, I fell in love with the sport. Since then, I just never stopped swimming.” Thus, this love for the water brought her to numerous opportunities. Just last year, she competed in the Southeast Asian Games in New Clark City and in the Philippine National Age Group Swimming Championships in Davao. In these 2 events, she had bagged a handful of medals and even broke two long-standing records in the latter event.

UAAP Season 83 is going to be Chua’s first playing year representing the green and white. So what can we expect from her and the rest of the DLSU Tankers? She replied saying, “Well, definitely the team will be giving its 100% commitment and effort. We will be training hard to attain the best possible outcome and hopefully, try to win the overall champion.”

 

3) Clinyl Chuateco of University of Santo Tomas

As for the Female Tigersharks, we have Clinyl Chuateco, who has also been winning medals from here and there. Competing for how many years now, Chuateco is definitely not a stranger in the fast lane.

Photo and Editing: Alonzo Magadia, Tisha Buico, and Paolo Francisco

In UAAP Season 82 alone, Chuateco already nabbed 2 medals. One of which is a bronze in the 800-meter freestyle relay and the other is a bronze in the 400-meter medley relay. In her 2 years representing the tigers in the UAAP, she said “it feels like an achievement because I’ve reached this far, and it’s a nice feeling to see all your hard work and sacrifices [had] paid off. [When I was younger,] I just wanted to learn how to swim since it was fun.”

So she reminded all aspiring competitive swimmers, “don’t be afraid of the struggles that you’ll encounter. Challenges and fallbacks are part of it, yet you should still strive for your goals. Make it happen. Learn from your experiences. Be better. Come out of your comfort zone, and don’t be afraid to try something new. Always believe in yourself that you can do it.” 

 

4) Jazmin Chua of Ateneo de Manila University

Jazmin Chua is another Atenean bagging numerous medals in the UAAP Swimming Competition. With an outstanding high school record that screams victory, this athlete made sure that she will also bring medals to the Loyola Schools.

 

She recounted, “I never considered myself as one of the best or the worst when I went to competitive swimming in high school. I remember that I would just continue to train hard every single day, blood and sweat day in and day out.” She added, “[at some point,] however, I became sick of swimming. Nevertheless, God and my parents continued to push me to train harder and harder. [And because of that,] I [did] not only get into Ateneo to study and to be part of the team but [I was] also offered a scholarship and became a medalist in UAAP.”

Since then, Chua has won a handful of awards in the past 3 years that she has been competing in the league. Among her medals last season was a gold in the 400-meter Medley Relay. However, greatness does not stop there. She said, “we as a team, continue to train every day, through zoom meetings. Our coaches provided a new set of training specifically for us that we could do together as a team.” Hence, for next season, she said “a lot will be stepping up, swimming events they normally do not, going out of their comfort zones. [Additionally, we will] keep our 3-peat champion streak, whatever it takes.”

 

We hope these strong and inspiring women enlightened and motivated you in one way or another. Whether it’s a sport you’ve been wanting to try or a goal you’ve always wanted to reach, do not let anything stop you from going after it. Break barriers and dream high!

 

References:

https://sports.abs-cbn.com/uaap/news/2020/05/29/ravena-daos-receive-top-honors-ateneo-athletes-68476

https://news.abs-cbn.com/sports/12/04/19/sea-games-ph-tankers-advance-to-finals-in-day-1-of-swimming

https://www.theguidon.com/1112/main/2017/09/womens-swimming/

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