Steamboat swim team hires new coach following Worsley retirement

Steamboat Springs Swim Team head coach, Charlie Coates, took over the position on Sept. 1. Coates brings years of swimming experience including competing at the collegiate level at Colorado State University.
Charlie Coates/Courtesy photo

The Steamboat Springs Swim Team has a new coach in Charlie Coates.

Upon the retirement of legendary Steamboat Springs swim team coach, Patti Worsley, the Old Town Hot Springs had big shoes to fill for the new coaching position.

After a series of interviews and discussions, the team officially brought in Coates. She began the position on Sept. 1, with the team’s first official practice on Sept. 6.

She sees this position as a great fit.

“I wasn’t sure what I was going to walk into, but it honestly has been such a welcoming experience,” Coates said. “I have support from all sides. The kids are great, they are super hard workers. I keep challenging them every day with something new and they just keep exceeding my expectations every day.”

Starting on the swimming scene at just nine years old, Coates fell in love with the sport and quickly began swimming year round. She swam competitively at the NCAA level at Colorado State University. 

After graduation, Coates came across open water swimming and began competing in triathlons, the Horsetooth Open Water Swim and other events.

In 2020, Coates and her husband moved to Steamboat Springs with their two children.

Get the top stories in your inbox every morning. Sign up here:

“It is the perfect place for kids to grow up, we are never bored,” Coates said. There are always activities to do and each season there is something new to do so that’s really fun for us. The schools are great and we wanted to raise our kids here.”

Coates explained that swimming has been a major part of her life for as long as she can remember, so once moving here, she jumped at the opportunity to coach the swim team. 

Coates’ first meet as head coach will be Oct. 8 in Aspen with another coming in early November.

She is excited to begin implementing her own thoughts and ideas to the team and cannot wait to see her athletes progress as swimmers and people. 

“We’re really working on inclusivity where we are one team and not just a bunch of different groups,” Coates said. “We’re also working on bringing positivity to racing your peers. Sometimes I feel like kids get scared and intimidated, but honestly it’s fun to push the kids next to you and be excited for them and yourself. It’s no longer a negativity toward racing but making it really fun.”

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Steamboat and Routt County make the Steamboat Pilot & Today’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.