Kuiken makes waves from the beginning while continuing to break her own records.


by Carrie LaGree

Sophomore swimming standout Dana Kuiken set two new school records last week.

Breaking records is nothing new to Kuiken, who set six Simpson swimming records as a freshman.

Kuiken lowered her own record in the 100-meter breaststroke of 1:10.42, which was set during the Jan. 12 Knox Invitational, to 1:10.38.

Kuiken has also smashed Brooke Rogge’s school record in the 100-meter freestyle by shaving almost a full second off. The record now stands at :57.49

“I was really surprised that I broke it,” said Kuiken.

“I looked up at my time and was really excited because I didn’t think I’d be going that fast since we’d been working so hard lately.”

Although Kuiken says she often can’t tell when she’s swum a particularly good race, she said “when I feel good at the end of the race, then I know I’ve done well.”

Kuiken has been swimming competitively since eighth grade, and she shows no signs of stopping.

“I can see myself doing it (swimming) until I’m really old,” Kuiken said.

Kuiken says her favorite event is the 100-meter breaststroke. She also regularly swims the 200-meter breaststroke, 100-meter freestyle, 200-meter freestyle and relays for the Storm.

In addition to her school records Kuiken has the season’s best times in the 200-meter breaststroke and 200-meter freestyle. She shares season best times in the four relay events: the 200 -meter freestyle relay, the 400-meter freestyle relay, the 200-meter medley relay and the 400-meter medley relay, as well.

Kuiken acknowledges the boost that competitors give her. “You push yourself a little harder” with a strong swimmer next to you, Kuiken said.

Outside the pool, Kuiken is a biology major, and she is thinking of pursuing a career in medicine. Swimming keeps her busy, however, with practices every morning at 6 a.m. and meets almost every weekend.

Coming up for the women’s swim team is the Liberal Arts Invitational on Feb. 21-23. This season has been successful thus far for Kuiken and she has hopes of repeat performances in the near future.

“I hope that I can break it again. Our really big meet is the Liberal Arts Invitational so it’d be nice to really better my time,” said Kuiken.