about the orcasorcas history and committee structure
about the orcas
The Nunawading Orcas have had a constant membership of between 40-60 members since its inception, with an age range of between 20 to over 60. There are a wide range of standards in swimming. About twenty members train regularly, that is, one or more sessions per week. Training takes place at Aqualink Nunawading, Fraser Place, Nunawading.
Members come mainly from the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, from Warrandyte in the north to Mulgrave in the south, Box Hill in the west to Wantirna in the east.
The Club has an active social program with both informal and more formal events occurring regularly throughout the year and organised by the Committee.
Members actively participate in still water competitions, open water bay (Port Phillip Bay), sea swim meets, and triathlon events. However, the focus of the Club is very much on fun, fitness and friendship.
New members are welcome and further information can be obtained by contacting the Club Secretary or talking to the Coach pool side during training times.
An application form and details about fees are available under the Training section of this website.
Click here to download the Nunawading Orcas Constitution as a PDF.
Early in August 1994 Aqualink Nunawading called for expressions of interest from people who were interested in forming an Aussi Masters club based at the Centre. The Centre believed that an Aussie Masters club was needed to cater for adults who would like more organised and structured swimming and who were interested in improving their skills and fitness.
There was a good response from the public to the idea of the formation of a club and in early September 1994 the inaugural meeting of the Club took place. This was followed shortly afterwards with the first training session under the supervision of Club’s new coach Brett Gartner, a former Nunawading Club national squad member.
The Club grew steadily from these beginnings and soon had over 50 members including a number who competed in District, State, National and International level still water competitions as well as in many open water competitions held in the summer season in Victorian waters and further afield.
Over the years the membership has stabilised and the numbers training regularly have been consistent. However, there have been fluctuations in the numbers competing depending on the interests of members at any given time.
As a child I lived close to the bay but I did not start swimming until I was in my late 40’s. Initially I was “all-out” swimming 25m free-style but with regular coaching my proficiency slowly improved in free-style and also in the other competitive strokes of backstroke, breast-stroke and butterfly. Although I was making great progress for someone for whom swimming came late in life I wanted to increase proficiency, speed and intensity of my workout.
Late in 2010 I went to watch the Orcas Masters Swimming group at Nunawading. It was everything I was looking for with high quality coaching, an emphasis on continued, timed improvement and a regular, challenging fitness routine. As an added bonus the Orcas are a great bunch of people who are fun to socialize with at their various, regular events.
I am delighted to be president of a club that accommodates personal objectives of fitness, technical stroke improvement, pool competition and open-water events at all ages and all levels within a friendly, encouraging environment.
Since I started swimming again two years ago I am fitter, have lost 15kg, feel healthier and look better. At secondary school I participated in a large amount of sport including athletics, swimming and football. Since that time with a full time job, marriage and a family of two children I thought that I would never have time to keep fit. As a result of training with the Orcas I am as fit now as I was at age 30 and I find I have more time and energy to live life to the fullest with my family and friends. When I first started swimming at the club it was with the idea of just swimming for fitness but the friendliness of the men and women in the club is such that I would never miss one of their regular social events and I am a frequent competitor in pool-based and open-water swimming competitions.
I had been a regular lap swimmer at the Nunawading Pool and was interested in participating in an evening squad to improve my technique and fitness.
I joined Nunawading Orcas when it was formed in 1994 and found it ideally suited my needs. The coaching has been professional and well structured to maintain interest while improving technique in all strokes. The intensity and distance varied to maintain a good level of fitness. Social activities and friendships have made swimming in a group most enjoyable.
I have learned to swim when I was about 20 years old and decided to join the triathlon club at Melbourne Uni ( A Decision made on a couch while watching Wide World of Sports!). Being totally out of breath after two laps of 25m pool was not a good start. I knew I needed to improve my fitness and technique. Over many years with practice I have built on my efforts and accumulated a treasure trove of bad habits and incorrect swimming techniques.
This all changed when in 2013 I joined the Orcas. A swimming club with a fantastic, friendly environment catering for a diverse swimming abilities. I am finding my fitness and swimming times improving and with better technique I no longer experience a shoulder pain after a hard session which was something that always held me back in the past.
Brendan has been involved in competitive swimming since 2000 and has coached since 2006.
Since getting involved in the sport he has held positions as captain, committee member and coach of
the Boronia Swimming Club, represented Metro District East as a coach during one of their annual
interstate trips and is now coaching various squads and members of the Huntingtower Swim Club in
addition to his role as the Operations Co-ordinator at the Huntingtower Sports & Aquatic Centre.
Other roles held over the years include swim instruction, lifeguarding, pool operations, reception &
administration at almost every pool in the east metro area.
He has coached swimmers to reach the Australian National Age Championships, finals at Victorian
State Age Championships and medallists & record holders at the Victorian Metro All Juniors.
Many of his swimmers have gone on to swim instruction, coaching and surf lifesaving themselves.
His approach to coaching, with guidance from other coaches and resources within the sport is to
think logically and look critically at each aspect of a competitive event and design training drills and
sets to hone in on them. In this way many of the inefficiencies in a stroke, skill or race plan can be
reduced and improvements in each the fitness component can be achieved.
On pool deck he appreciates questions and feedback from swimmers and is animated, known to
frequently draw ever more elaborate stick figures on the whiteboard and always looking for the best
metaphor to help his swimmers visualise technique.
past coaches, committees and life members
|2018||Larry Murray||Mark Williamson||Greg Palmer||Rafal Nowacki|
|2017||Larry Murray||Mark Williamson||Greg Palmer||Rafal Nowacki|
|2016||Larry Murray||Pablo Pizzuto||Greg Palmer||Rafal Nowacki|
|2015||Emilio Badoer||Pablo Pizzuto||Greg Palmer||Friedo Ligthart|
|2014||Emilio Badoer||Pablo Pizzuto||Greg Palmer||Friedo Ligthart|
|2013||Emilio Badoer||Pablo Pizzuto||Greg Palmer||Friedo Ligthart|
|2012||Mart Hagel||Margaret Lowe||Greg Palmer||Friedo Ligthart|
|2011||Mart Hagel||Annette Brunton||Greg Palmer||Friedo Ligthart|
|2010||Mart Hagel||Annette Brunton||Greg Palmer||Peter Rush|
|2009||Mart Hagel||Annette Brunton||Greg Palmer||Peter Rush|
|2008||Mart Hagel||Brenda Cameron||Greg Palmer||Peter Rush|
|2007||Mart Hagel||Brenda Cameron||Greg Palmer||Ross Brimer|
|2006||Mart Hagel||Brenda Cameron||Greg Palmer||Ross Brimer|
|2005||Mart Hagel||Brenda Cameron||Greg Palmer||Paul Bunker|
|2004||Mart Hagel||Ross Hibbins||Greg Palmer||Anne Cole|
|2003||Rod Clarke||Trevor Jackson||Greg Palmer||Anne Cole|
|2002||Rod Clarke||Trevor Jackson||Greg Palmer||Kim Rea|
|2001||Rod Clarke||Trevor Jackson||Greg Palmer||Kim Rea|
|2000||Rod Clarke||Joanne Muraca||Greg Palmer||Sandy Broadhead|
|1999||Mart Hagel||Joanne Muraca||Greg Palmer||Sandy Broadhead|
|1998||Paul Bunker||Mart Hagel||Greg Palmer||Mike Smith|
|1997||Paul Bunker||Mart Hagel||Greg Palmer||Vicki Smith|
|1996||Terry Foster||Paul Bunker||Greg Palmer||Aine Walsh|
|1995||Terry Foster||Paul Bunker||Paul Thompson||Aine Walsh|
The following members have been awarded honorary life membership for outstanding services to the Club.
|Year||Name||Reason for award|
|2011||Mart Hagel||For services to the Club for over a decade.|
|2006||Greg Palmer||For services as the Club Treasurer for over a decade.|
|1998||Brett Gartner||Outstanding services as inaugural coach and in helping to get the club up and running.|
Each year our members are awarded trophies in three categories; president’s award, coach’s award and the best competing swimmer.
The Best Competing Swimmer’s Award
At the Club’s AGM and Presentation night a trophy is awarded to the best competing swimmer of the Year. This is determined on a points system which is maintained by the Committee.
The aim is to recognise the best competing swimmer of the year and to encourage members to compete. It is awarded to the swimmer who has accumulated the most points during a swimming year. To encourage slower swimmers to compete and stand a chance to receive the Best Competing Swimmer Award the club introduced ‘participation’ points that count toward a swimmer’s total point tally. Member’s receive one additional point for each pool race entered and two points for every open water event, irrespective of distance.
In the event of a swimmer being a member of multiple clubs, that swimmer must nominate Nunawading Orcas as their club for each swim meet they want included in the count. In addition, a swimmer must attend a minimum number of training sessions and be an active participant in club training with at least 15% of training sessions attended by the swimmer to be eligible for the Swimmer of the Year award.
If there are swimmers who finish the year on equal points then the swimmer who has the best placing at the higher level receives the award. This will be determined in consultation with the Club’s Coach.
1. State or National meets
Ten points for first place, down to one point for tenth place.
2. Club meets
Three points for first, two points for second and one point for third.
3. Participation points
One additional point for each pool race and two points for every open water event.
|1998||Margaret Stanley & Greg Palmer|
|1997||Jo Muraca & Trevor Jackson|
|1996||Charmaine Lee & Brian Peakin|
|2006*||Anne Cole & Patrick Mohr|
|2005||Anne Cole & Neomal Jasinghe|
|2004||Robyn Gillespie & Rod Clarke|
|2003||Margaret Lowe & Rod Clarke|
|2002||Nicole Galea & Michael Drake|
|2001||Robyn Gillespie & Rod Clarke|
|2000||Robyn Gillespie & Ross Hibbins|
|1999||Linda Stewart & Mike Smith|
|1998||Vicky Smith & Terry Foster|
|1997||Linda Stewart & Kim Rea|
|1996||Sue Williams & Kim Rea|
* Prior to 2007 there were two competing swimmers’ awards, one for the best male and the other for the best female.
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