Most swimmers focus only on their next race. They eat, breathe and sleep swimming.
Chatham Dobbs is of a different race. He sees swimming and life through different glasses.
That does not mean that this senior is not one of UA's top sprinters or that he does not take the sport seriously to do his best in every race, it's just that his approach is good and a bit unique. What a philosophy major actually makes sense.
"Chatham Chatham also needs to be able to perceive things in a different dichotomy," said United States Swimming Assistant Jesse Stipek. "It's how his brain works to process swimming, life, and academics and divide them into different categories. Many athletes are so obsessed that they forget why they even swim.
"Chatham has many more open discoveries about what he's looking for than just black and white. What Chatham found out is that he has a passion for so many things. "
That does not even sum up who Dobbs is – in or out of the pool. Stipek said there are many "pieces of the puzzle" that make Dobbs. He likes to play chess in a coffee house, go to an academic book on philosophy, go to a lecture or sit in the pool.
Dobbs likes to see himself as a double agent.
"No matter what environment I am in, I have a secret identity up my sleeve. Who I am is not defined by the context in which I am, "he said. "I appreciate a lot, which has nothing to do with swimming and vice versa. I find friends and later they realize that I am a swimmer. It's nice to always have something for yourself. "
It's hard to know where to start with Dobbs, who describes himself as "curious, a little hyperactive, passionate, focused and always on the lookout for the next game, trying to figure out the game of life."
But let's go: Dobbs led his teammates at the University of Arizona to a 16th place finish at the NCAAs – just eleven points before the 10th – and ended on March 30th in Austin, Texas.
Dobbs earned an All-American First Team Award – his first, first team – in the 100-fly with a time of 45.39. He received an honorable mention in the 400 Medley Relay, 200 Free Relay. 200 medley relays and 400 free relays.
He has developed himself in UA coach Augie Busch's culture of the team and knows that everything has a purpose in practice. He usually knows what Stipek or Busch demand of him, without any of them following the instructions.
For Dobbs, practicing is fun – not the resistance it can have for so many.
He will jump out of the pool and immediately say that he wants to beat and beat Olympian Matt Grevers, who is a trained and volunteer trainer at the UA. He has 33 medals in international competition in the field of back and freestyle.
And that's not just a bargain for Dobbs, who owns four top 10 times in the history of US UA in the 50 Freestyle, 100 Fly, 100 Back and 200 Back.
Dobbs gets a benefit from his quick twitching and increased body awareness – both rare. Body awareness lets him know how many strokes or kicks he has to perform and how fast he has to walk.
What exactly is fast twitching?
"It's neurological how it connects its muscles to its brain and spine. how the nerves move his muscles, "Busch said. "That makes him faster, smoother and faster. He is also a great athlete outside the pool – as he runs. You see his explosiveness. That makes him a unique talent.
"He focuses on everything he does in the water. He notices if he does not feel right. He has a reference point, how big the flow with the water is. "
An example of how Dobbs' quick twitching helped him came in his high school year. After repeated shoulder surgery, which he had not swum or trained for 18 months, he won the Tennessee State 50-year-old meeting with a personal best and a state record of 20.28.
Dobbs can not really explain how his quick twitching feels, since it has always been there and he knows nothing else.
"The ongoing joke with my (UA) teammates is," Oh Chatham could just skip the exercise for two weeks and get a best time, "Dobbs said." I'm not sure how to answer what it's like Cliché, but you somehow feel in a natural habitat, you know how you move and how you navigate, it's as if walking on grass is slower than the pavement, I know which line is faster than another Childhood, I know what natural movement my body has. "
Stipek helped him handle this gift, as it can be difficult to know when to use it and when to rest it. He focuses on Dobbs listening to his body and not training him too hard. If so, it may take longer for him to get ready for the next race.
"Matt Grevers has a bit of a twitch, but it's a little different from Chatham, which is extremely high," said Stipek. "He has to rest his muscles a bit longer. He can go from zero to 60 in a jiffy, but has to rest. If it exceeds this point, it is not beneficial. "
These multiple operations in high school – he has not swum in the last two years – may be responsible for his perspective. Fortunately, he got involved early in the UA, as there was a point where he thought his swimming career might be over before it really got started.
"I have come in many qualities that I now wear. There is a correlation. Without the injuries, I would not be sure how I would go out. I have always been a curious person. I like dealing with a lot of different content and materials. I do not need much time to think about swimming. Although I went up to a meeting, I am extremely focused at the time. "
Busch has trained them all, from Type A personalities to Surfer types and now to Dobbs, who has proven to be a mix of philosopher and fierce competitor.
"He loves the competition and the competition with some guys – his brothers," Busch said. "That's what he likes most. Even if he can be something of a free spirit in philosophy, if he is in practice and meets, it's all about his brotherhood and a coherent unit in the pool. "