Oh boy where do we start? From the beginning, I suppose…
My name is Nate and I was born in May of '84. It was a Wednesday. I know this because my Speedo calendar tells me so.
George and I met in the late 90’s while swimming for the Great Bridge Swim and Racquet Club – the legendary Virginia Beach Swim League powerhouse led by Krissy Kirkman.
Soon after high school, George and I found ourselves at the helm of the Cheshire Forest Flying Fish (another vaunted VBSL squad). This is where a make-believe club team was formed: the NGAC Water Monsters. Hence, our true entity name: Water Monsters, LLC. NGAC, for ya’ll not following, is short for Nate & George Aquatic Club.
We convinced our 6 and Unders that we scaled Mt. Everest and dug a pool out with our bare hands just so we could get in some high-quality altitude training. We showered our Mixed 13-14 VBSL Record setting 200 Medley Relay with sparkling cider as soon as they got out of the water.
We drank a 12 pack of Code Red Mountain Dew at every Saturday morning swim meet. There is nothing more fun than summer league swimming. It truly was the best of times.
All good things must come to an end so after graduating college, George went into financial services and I dove head-first into coaching both club and college swimming.
It was at Old Dominion University when I first realized how expensive and difficult to use the existing digital pace clocks were. We spent $500 on a remote control to program sets into our $1200 pace clock. After sitting on the floor of our office for 3 hours, we gave up.
After several years coaching club and college at the same time, I hung up my stopwatch for the magical world of business insurance.
But I couldn’t stay away from swimming so during the 2012 Olympics in London, I began tweeting live swimming results and analysis under the @swimnerds handle. We slowly gained a following of legitimate swim nerds.
After a couple years of tweeting, we thought maybe we should develop a product that could benefit the swimming community. So, we took aim at improving the college swimming recruitment process.
Our idea was to simply compare a high school swimmer’s times with every Division, Conference, and Team in the NCAA. This way, the high school swimmer would know EXACTLY where they fit in. The college swimming recruiting tool is alive & free. Please check it out at https://collegeswimmingrecruiting.com/
but we turned our attention to making an affordable, useful pace clock.
We got a prototype built in the Silicon Valley of Alabama and launched our Kickstarter during the 2016 Rio Olympics. Thanks to dozens of ravenous swim nerds that wanted an affordable digital pace clock, we quickly raised over $60,000 in 30 days, and we were off to the races. Well, to China, actually.
It took us no time to realize there was no way we could build these clocks in America. Not affordably, anyway. After the Kickstarter, and out of the blue, I received an email from Otto, whom I first contacted about making a pace clock for us back in October 2013! At that point in time, he was still a very small clock shop and did not have the engineers to build a custom Bluetooth clock for us. Fast forward 3 years and he had grown his team big enough to take on our project. I told him about the Kickstarter and asked him if he would like to build our clocks. He said he would love to give it a shot. So, I flew to China.
We ate a lot (best food in the world) and worked even more. I think this picture was taken at 11:30 at night on Otto's kitchen table. The initial trip was a huge success and an amazing adventure into the unknown.
Six months later we made good on our promise to our Kickstarter backers, albeit a bit off the timeline. Not that they seemed to care after receiving something substantially better than the prototype...
Otto and I have become close friends. We are the same age and have families and businesses that support one another. I've worked at his kitchen table and he has worked at mine. Our businesses have grown together.
Our team is dedicated to bringing you the most helpful and innovative tools for swimming. Whatever is best for the sport – that is our motto.
Most recently, at the beginning of 2021, we launched Swimnerd.Live, a virtual scoreboard for your swim meets. Really real-time results.
Above all else, we strive to put our customers first. If you ever need anything, please call or text 757-955-6273.
Thank you for your continued support!