Academy Teachers

JEFF COMMINGS

ODD_MAN_OUT_BOX_AD
commings

  • 2012 U.S. Olympic Trial Qualified & Competed, 100 Breaststroke (2nd-Oldest Male American)
  • United States Masters Swimming (USMS) National & Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA) Masters World Record Holder
  • USMS All-Star, FINA All-Time Top Ten World Rankings & FINA World Champion
  • Pan-American Games Bronze Medalist
  • Former USA National Team Member and three-time Olympic Trials competitor
  • High School, USA-Swimming, NCAA & USMS All-American
  • Specializes in Sprinting, Breaststroke, Backstroke & I.M.

Jeff Commings began his swimming career in St. Louis when he was 4 years old, where he was literally thrown into the water at a local Boys’ Club. After his initial floundering, Jeff took to the water with ease and joined the Boys’ Club team. A year after his introduction to swimming, he signed up for his first meet.

Jeff improved, winning his first trophy at 6 for the 25 fly. Later, as he grew, Jeff found a natural talent for the breaststroke. After rising in the local ranks, he made a name for himself on the national scene with a Top 16 ranking among 11- and 12-year-olds in the 50-meter breast. 1991 came as a breakout year. He was 3rd in the 100-meter breast at the national championships, as well as a berth on the Pan-American team traveling to Cuba where he won bronze.

Jeff attended the University of Texas – Austin on a full scholarship under the tutelage of Olympic Coach Eddie Reese. His highest placing at the NCAA championships was third in the 100 breast his sophomore year. He would end his college career an eight-time All-American, USA Swimming National Team member and four-time conference champion in the Southwest Conference.

Jeff competed in three U.S. Olympic Trials, in 1992, 1996 and 2012. After the 1996 Trials, Jeff moved to Colorado Springs to train under renowned coach and former world record holder Jonty Skinner and then retired in 1998.

In 1999, Jeff discovered Masters Swimming and initially used the workouts as a way to stay in shape, vowing to never compete in another high-stress meet. That vow didn’t last long. At the 2003 Masters National Championships, Jeff won five events and set his first national record in the 100 breast. The following summer, Jeff set a Masters World Record in the 100-meter Individual Medley. More national records and world records followed.

Jeff continues to train in preparation for Masters swimming competitions. He is Co-Founder of Dolphins Of The Desert Swimming Academy.

Geoff Glaser

geoff

  • United States Masters Swimming (USMS): National Record Holder; Relay & Individual All-American; and National Champion
  • Fédération Internationale de Natation (FINA): Top Ten World Rankings in Freestyle, multiple years
  • English Channel Swimmer: Garnet-Martin Trophy, The Channel Swimming Association (1987) — First Coloradoan to successfully swim across English Channel
  • Specializes in Marathon, Open Water, and Long Distance Freestyle as well as Butterfly
  • More than 40 years teaching and coaching experience, including working with the disabled

Geoff Glaser learned how to swim at the YWCA in Bloomington, Ill when he was just five. He did not immediately take to the water, and it took a couple of tries to pass Beginners. His stumbling block was the course requirement that the swimmer make one length of freestyle, all the way to the other side, without stopping.

After Beginners, he continued to work his way through the Y’s learn-to-swim program. He liked swimming and continued to learn as much as he could. When he was eight, a friend invited him to try out for the local swim team, the Bloomington Normal Swim Club, an AAU-Swimming club in central Illinois. He barely made the 25 yard freestyle cut; multiple lengths felt colossal. Nevertheless the coach, a former Pan-American backstroke champion and Brazilian swim star, let him onto the team.

Geoff devoted himself to swimming, and he loved it. By the time he was ten, he won high-point. Still, the swimming practices seemed long. Over time as he became stronger workouts became more tolerable. He competed on a regular basis in AAU Swimming and summer league swimming. By the time Geoff graduated from high school, he was All-Conference, and All-State. He excelled in the 50 and 100 freestyle events and managed to swim a good 50, 100 and 200 fly as well.

While in college, Geoff swam for recreation. But after graduation, he took up swimming again, this time as an open water / marathon swimmer. In 1987, he swam the English Channel by relay and won the Garnet-Martin Relay Trophy from the Channel Swimming Association. He continued other ocean swimming events through his mid-twenties. Then in his mid-thirties, he took up Masters Swimming, this time with a renewed sense of enthusiasm and vigor. Competing in world masters swimming events, he earned several FINA Top Ten World rankings in sprint, mid-distance and long-distance freestyle events.

Geoff began teaching and coaching more than three decades ago and continues to coach and teach individuals, groups, and teams. He is a Co-Founder of Dolphins of the Desert Swimming Academy. He is passionate about community service and launched the Learn To Swim program for inner-city youth at Imago Dei Middle School in 2008.

Justin Slade

slade

  • Member NCAA Div II National Championship Team.
  • Former South African National Record Holder
  • Current Oregon Masters Swimming State Record Holder (40-44)
  • 19 years competitive coaching/teaching experience (USA and USMS)
  • Coached numerous swimmers to USA Swimming Top 10, All time Top 100, and overall #1 rankings
  • Masters degree in Sport Psychology

Justin has coached competitive club and masters swimming since graduating from Arizona State University (BS ’96 and MS ’99) in 1999 and has been involved with swimming since he was 6-years-old. As a competitive Age Group swimmer in his native country of South Africa, he developed a love of swimming, and the water, that is evident in his coaching style to this day.

Highlights of Justin’s accomplishments in South Africa include: Top ranked national age group swimmer, finalist at South African Nationals (1989-1992), former South African Record Holder as a member of his Provincial 200 Free Relay in 1991. He moved to the United States in 1992 to attend college. An Academic-All American, his freshman year at California State University – Bakersfield, he contributed in both individual and relay events to the Roadrunners winning the NCAA Div. II National Championship in 1993. He transferred to Arizona State University in 1993 after Coach Maglischo was named the new Head Coach at ASU. He was a 3-year letter winner and Pac-10 finalist while at ASU.

At Sun Devil Aquatics and Sun Devil Masters (1999-2007) Justin played an instrumental part in building a USA Swimming Gold Medal Program from the ground up and coached numerous individuals to become State Champions, Far Western Champions, Zone Champions, National #1 Rankings, Junior National, Senior National, and Olympic Trial Qualifiers. Moving down to Tucson in 2007 he started the Flying Fish Arizona Swim Team and served as the Head Coach for the following 3 years. He once again coached and enjoyed success with all levels of swimmer from summer league and learn-to-swim to nationally ranked age group and masters swimmers. In 2011 he moved to the Pacific Northwest and was Head Coach of the LaCamas Headhunters Swim Team where he once again helped build and lead a team to State level prominence.

Many of his former swimmers have obtained athletic scholarships to NCAA Div I, II and III programs and he has had swimmers who compete for Stanford University, University of Arizona, Princeton, Air Force Academy, ASU, Auburn, Texas Christian, Drury, Iowa, and the Coast Guard Academy among others. He has coached at least 2 swimmers who have gone on to win Individual National Championships at the USA Swimming, NCAA Div I and Div II, and NAIA levels. He has also coached numerous State, American and World Record Holder Masters swimmers over the past 15 years.

Justin is newly married and enjoys the outdoors, traveling, staying fit and healthy, spending time with his family and motivating and inspiring young athletes to be all they can be.

Marcus Titus

marcus-titus-nathan-perkel-pic

  • NCAA All-American in breaststroke and medley relay
  • 2012 Olympic Trials finalist, 100 breaststroke
  • Pan-American Games medalist (100 breast and 400 medley relay)
  • Member USA Swimming national team, 2009-2012
  • Deaf World Championships gold medalist
  • Arizona high school state champion

Marcus Titus is a native Tucsonan, specializing in the breaststroke with extensive national and international competitive swimming experience. Unlike most swimmers who start swimming at an early age, he didn’t begin his swimming career until high school. During this time, his coaches noticed that he had talent and encouraged him to specialize in the breaststroke.

After swimming in high school for two years, he joined the Tucson Ford Aquatics Swimming Club. In his high school senior year, he was State Champion in the 100 breaststroke and nearly broke the state record. In 2005, he was recruited by Arizona
State University by head coach Mike Chasson. During that year he broke the ASU 100yd breaststroke record, swimming
54.28. In 2006 he transferred to the University of Arizona where he continued to excel under the guidance of Coach Frank Busch. While swimming at the U of A he was part of the 2008 NCAA Championship Team, and broke the U of A 100 breaststroke record, swimming 52.21.

Marcus was very successful while on the USA National team. From 2009 to 2011 he was ranked in the nation’s Top 5, in the 100m breaststroke. In 2011, he swam in the Pan American Games and earned two medals, finishing 2nd for medley relay and 3rd in the 100m breaststroke. In 2011, he also swam in Portugal at the Deaf World Championships where he earned a total of eight medals for the Deaf USA Swim Team. Marcus inspired a lot of Deaf swimmers after the Deaf world championships, and also continues to inspire hearing swimmers as well. Marcus has an amazing talent showing that with dedication you can overcome hardships and compete at an elite level.

Thane Maudslien

marcus-titus-nathan-perkel-pic

  • NCAA All-American
  • 2012 Olympic Trials competitor
  • Pac-12 bronze medalist, 200 backstroke (2016)
  • Nine-time high school All-American

Thane Maudslien joins Dolphins of the Desert’s staff as he begins to pursue a career in coaching while completing his studies at the University of Arizona. During his time as a member of the Wildcats’ swim team, he competed in the Pac-12 championships and the NCAA championships on relays and in individual events.

Thane comes from the Pacific Northwest, where he started swimming competitively at the age of 4 in Normandy Park, Washington, on a summer league. Shortly after his small beginnings, he began competing year-round with King Aquatic Club in the Seattle area. “Swimming has and always will be a passion of mine.”