Larissa Rodriguez only learned to swim last year at age 40, and now she’s making waves across the aquatics industry.
In August 2011 she launched swimmunity.com, a Website dedicated to
encouraging nonswimming adults to learn.
“It’s almost a calling,” she says.
Rodriguez had lessons as a child, but never mastered swimming. It
wasn’t until she planned a tropical vacation that she decided
to try again.
The vacation was to celebrate the completion of her MBA at the
University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, and after some hesitation,
she enrolled in lessons at a private swim school in Chanhassen,
Rodriguez successfully learned the four major strokes in time to
enjoy all sorts of water activities on her trip, including jet
skiing and swimming with the sharks.
“Learning to swim is really one of my biggest personal
accomplishments,” says Rodriguez, who still swims several
times a week.
She started swimmunity.com last year to share her experience with
other adults who are in the same place she was.
“I’m trying to create awareness,” she says.
“Everything is geared toward children, and that’s
turning off a lot of adults because they don’t see themselves
swimming. Let’s change some of the marketing and segment it
so we can change that.”
To that end, she’s connecting with leaders in the aquatics
industry, including USA Swimming, and hoping that her unique perspective
will continue to attract attention.