Spring Branch resident Regina Sellers has loved to swim all her life, but never thought of swimming competitively until a friend suggested it a couple of years ago.
Now, the retired psychotherapist has two sets of gold medals she won in San Antonio's Senior Games, and has her eyes set on swimming in this year's national competition. Sellers won four gold medals April 13 in the Senior Games of San Antonio 2002 in the Josh Davis Natatorium at Blossom Athletic Center.
Competing in the 65-69 age group against eight other swimmers. Sellers came in first in the 400-yard, 200-yard, 100-yard and 50-yard freestyle. She goes next to the state meet from Aug. 26 to Sept. 1 in Lubbock.
"My goal at state is to be in the nationals and go to Virginia, where they are going to be held this year," Sellers says.
Sellers, who moved from San Antonio to Spring Branch 15 years ago, quit working as a psychotherapist to begin caring for her mother. She turned her love of swimming into a way to handle the stresses of her situation.
"So, my husband bought me an 'Endless Pool,'" she says. "It's only about eight feet by 15 feet, but with pumps that generate currents that you can swim against." At 67, she finds swimming an ideal exercise.
"It's one of the best exercises for older people," she says. "It's not hard on the joints and you don't hurt yourself; it's good aerobic exercise and it makes you sleep good at night."
The idea of taking it to a different level cam from a friend. "I had a friend who did bowling in the Senior Games, so she said 'why don't you go out for the Senior Games?'
"I thought it would be fun to compete," she said, "so I did."
She entered the Senior Games two years ago, and won gold in the 50, 100 and 400-meter freestyle.
"That was my first on - it was a little scary," she says. But even after the first competition, there were obstacles, she said, including the effects of a broken neck.
"It was because of Dr. Jason Hahn (of Hahn Chiropractic and Wellness Centers) that I was able to do this without a great deal of pain. He worked with me the whole time," she says.
Sellers' love of swimming began as a child in Pittsburgh, when she would go to a neighborhood swimming pool with her friends. "We called it 'the inkwell,'" she says. "It probably wasn't more than 40 feet long. It was old, and not very clean."
"I was six then. I'd go down there and I taught myself to swim."
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