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Snider's Prochaska builds swim career off Parapan American Games experience

January 30, 2020


For Cali Prochaska, years of dedication to swimming are paying off. The hundreds of races and thousands of laps have taken the Snider High School junior to different waters around the world.

In the summer of 2019, Cali competed in the Parapan American Games in Lima, Peru. She was one of 35 swimmers selected to represent the United States of America in the quadrennial competition featuring of athletes with different abilities and conditions from across North America and South America.

Cali placed 4th in the 100-meter butterfly, just missing the medal stand.

“It’s really nerve-racking to have to race Gold Medalists and world record-holders,” Cali tells ParkviewSportsMedicine.com. “The whole Games experience was really about the team. I learned a lot about my swims by watching a lot of the other people swim.”

What started as physical therapy for Cali at the age of 5 has turned into quite the competitive swimming career in the years that follow. At Helen P. Brown Natatorium, you can find Cali practicing twice a day, working to improve in a myriad of events. She also is a member of the teams at Blackhawk Swim Club and Summit City Aquatics.

“Cali is an incredibly hard worker,” Snider swimming coach Melanie Koto says. “She wants to do the absolute best that she can at any level: at club, for high school, and internationally. And she puts in the work to get herself to be the best that she can be.”  

In addition to the Parapan American Games in this past August, Cali has sense been selected to the C-team for U.S. Paralympics Swimming. Earlier this month, Cali attended the national team training camp in Colorado Springs. She was also named Scholastic All-American in the last year by USA Swimming.

And while travel issues from national team training forced her to miss the Summit Athletic Conference championships on January 17, the IHSAA sectionals is another opportunity for Cali to shine and inspire. The prelims are Thursday, February 6; consolation and championships are Saturday, February 8, at Helen P. Brown Natatorium.

“If it’s something you want, go for it,” Cali lends as her advice. “Don’t let anyone else take it away from you.”

Snider is one of 26 high schools that partner with Parkview Sports Medicine for athletic training, sports performance, nutrition, athletic rehabilitation and other sports medicine services. Learn more at www.parkviewsportsmedicine.com.

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