| In 1999, Colorado STARS dove into the water and from the very first practice surpassed everyone’s expectations for a new team. In a very short time, STARS became a respected team to contend with at every level of local, state and national swimming. In 12 years, STARS has won sixteen State Championship Titles including 9 Short Course Titles in a row ('03-'11) and 7 Long Course State Titles in a row ('04-'10). This past summer, STARS sent 24 senior swimmers to the Western Sectional meet in Mt. Hood, Oregon. Utilizing the pools at Grandview HS, Smoky Hill HS, Rangeview HS, Utah Park, and Denver area long course facilities in the summer, the team serves year round swimmers who aspire to reach their potential in our program that offers not only quality physical training, but a genuine concern for the athlete’s emotional and social development.
STARS is a coach owned team based on the corporate model. They are a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation in the state of Colorado and are tax exempt. The Board is comprised of Todd Schmitz and other community members and employs an accountant and attorney to assist in the handling of business affairs. Parents are an important part of the success of the team assisting with social functions, clothing sales and supporting team functions and philosophy. The team is designed to allow the parents to fulfill their most important job on a swim team, to parent their swimmers, and the partnerships that are created between parents, athlete, and coach are key to STARS swimmers’ success.
Team membership is capped at approximately 160+ USA swimmers from age 6 to college athletes. STARS accepts a limited number of new swimmers each year. STARS does not have a developmental program and most new swimmers joining the team have several years of prior competitive swimming experience and are ready for a technique based, competitive environment. The team has clearly defined training groups and a specific coach for each training group. The coaching staff is highly professional, experienced and stable. The coaches apply stroke technique and training philosophy to each group on a daily, consistent basis allowing successful development and progression for each athlete. This approach creates a team atmosphere and STARS swimmers enjoy success as a result of this team cohesiveness. Both male and female age group swimmers have won respective high point awards at the State Championships. While most meets are local, age groupers participate at Zones, Far Westerns and on Colorado All Star teams. Additional travel meets offered may include meets in Arizona and Chicago along with various Grand Prix Meets around the country. Relays are emphasized for the fun and team spirit they provide and water polo and dry land training are incorporated into the programs for variety.
The senior team competes at local, state and national level meets. STARS has won the 04, 05, 06, 07, 08, 10 Long Course State Championship titles, which includes both senior and age group swimmers. STARS are represented by male and female finalists at Junior Nationals, Sectional meets, and has state record relays place in top 16 nationally. Swimmers come from various high schools and many represent their own high school in state finals achieving All-State and All-American recognition. A STARS swimmer was voted by the coaches as male high school swimmer of the year in 2003, 2005, 2008, and the 2004, 2008, 2010 and 2011 female high school swimmers of the year. In addition, STARS has had an international level disability swimmer with world and American records to her credit, a 2004 Asian Games Gold Medalist, Junior and Senior National and U.S. Open meet qualifiers. Graduates from the STARS senior program swim at the Air Force Academy, Bryant University, Colorado College, Denver University, Denison University, Duke University, University of North Dakota, St. Louis College, Brandeis, Drury University, Coast Guard Academy, Linfield College, Pacific University, and the University of Kentucky.
Colorado STARS is a great place to swim, have fun, and become a better person!