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iGnite Spotlight: Austin Leader Sha Klatt

Professional Career before becoming an iGnite Class Leader

When I graduated from Baylor back in 1980, Mike and I moved to Austin. He clerked for a judge, and I taught pre-K at a private school and also ran their summer swim program. I LOVE children and love teaching them to swim.

Once I became a mom, I stayed at home with my daughter and two son's and thoroughly enjoyed being involved in their schools and sports activities. They are grown now and all live in Austin. I am blessed to have them close!

Fitness Background

I grew up in a fitness family. My dad played baseball at Baylor, and my mom majored in PE, ran track and swam. My parents are 87 and are still my biggest inspiration! They continue to be very active. I was also always involved in sports. I had a horse and was a competitive jumper, I learned to snow ski and water ski at a young age, I ran track, swam competitively from 3rd -12th grade, and I also played high school tennis.

What stands out the most when you think about what you have learned from your iGnite experience?

"Just say YES!" Seven and a half years ago, Neissa asked me to lead the iGnite swim program, it was just the right moment. I was ready to spread my wings and get back into the swimming world. I love sharing my love for swimming and helping others feel comfortable in the water! When I hear someone say," I'm not a good swimmer," I immediately want to work with them! As with anything, there are tips and tricks that make swimming easier!!! The leaders and women iGnite are a constant source of inspiration, support and friendship. I am blessed to be part of this amazing group and I'm so glad I said YES!

What are some of your passions?

My Faith, my fam is my jam, travel, hiking, snow skiing in Telluride with my family (Mike, Ben, Sydney and Scott, Baby Sha, Sam and Bonner) , sunset cruises on our boat with friends, Yosemite, ice cream (coffee with fudge sauce), Mexican food, Barton Springs, Seaside Florida, Sunday night family dinners, Thanksgiving at my parents with the entire family, get-togethers with friends, being grateful everyday, laughing, being near water, life-with-Mike!

Who are your favorite musicians and/or what is the best concert you've ever attended?

My two sons, Sam and Ben, are music aficionados and have enlightened my music taste over the years. I was thrilled when they invited me to Fleet Foxes last year ~ AWESOME! But I love all kinds of music, Mike plays Mozart on Sunday mornings as we get ready for church, I have loved the Beatles since I was 4 and my next door neighbor taught me to twist, I love Simon and Garfunkle and got to see them in concert a few years ago~ INCREDIBLE!!!

What is something people may not know about you?

My dad was in the USAF, we lived on Okinawa for 5 years, and at the Air Force Academy for 12 years. Living on Okinawa and growing up traveling throughout Southeast Asia, my eyes were opened to the world at a young age. We vacationed by hopping on various Air Force planes and going wherever they were going; Japan, Taiwan, The Philippines, Thailand. We went amazing places and now, luckily, my husband and I continue to prioritize traveling with our family.

When I'm not teaching iGnite classes you can find me...

My newest obsession is my 11 week old granddaughter, Baby Sha! I help my daughter, Sydney, a lot with the baby as she navigates going back to work. It is my greatest pleasure!

What are your top 5 tips for swimming and why?

These are my top 5 for improving your freestyle:

1) Correct body position (legs should be at the surface of the water, SWIM DOWNHILL, not uphill)

2) High elbows (so that you can stab the water and get some power in your stroke)

3) Breathing: Don't look up to take a breath, look down the side of your body, behind you

4) Glide (become 1 with the water, torpedo position)

5) Finish (As you stroke the water, finish with your arm long, all the way to your thigh)

Come swim and I'll show you!!!

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