Swim Rotorua Coaches

Swim Rotorua have a great team of qualified coaches, lead by our head coach Aidan Withington.






Aidan Withington

Appointed Head Coach in January 2020 with responsibility for all coaching matters, staff development & mentoring, club development initiatives & leadership. Aidan has a wealth of over 15 years coaching experience gained from Southland, Central Hawkes Bay & Capital Swim Club in Wellington. For Capital Swim Club he was coaching levels from juniors through to National level title holders & with Para Olympion, Mary Fisher. This is his first Head Coach position so looking forward to exciting times ahead. Aidan has recently re-developed some of our squads. 



Tiana Hill


Kia Ora, My name is Tiana & I am excited to be back at Swim Rotorua as the new Intermediate and Metro Squad Coach. I Joined Swim Rotorua in 2011 when I was 14 years old attending my first National competition which was Divisin 2 in the same year & again in 2012. From this point I attended National Age Groups, NZ Short Course & National Secondary Schools Championships. I then took on coaching whilst still in school whih included coaching with the Junior Academy in 2015. 

In 2016 I began my University Degree and have now graduated with a Bachelor of Sport & Exercise & a certificate in Arts. I have participated in sports coaching; exersize science, exersize prescription & personnal training. I found this super valuable as it has allowed me to keep learning on pool-deck & I am able to interpret skills with a better understanding of how they should be executed.

Swim Rotorua has always been my home & being able to give back to the club is something special & I am gratful to be back with my extended family. I am really looking forward to beimg with the Turbo Squad & I am excited to seeing their progress throughout the season & assist the swimmers with achieving their personal goals.






Tara Watt


Tara has a combined role of Club Administrator and Lead Coach for the Junior Academy. She has come to Swim Rotorua with a wealth of experience in management, administration and coaching. She is also coaching for CLM Swim Magic so has already taught a number of our young swimmers in the early stages of their swimming journey.

Tara hails from Essex, England. She brings a love of swimming and 'can't wait' to get involved in the next steps on from learn to swim.
Tara is coaching primarily in our Junior Academy working alongside Lucia, Samantha, Milla, Kate  & Hazel - but also has some cover with our outside squads. She also helps with the Making the Difference Program.
Tara's appointment was another part of our commitment to invest more in our coaching programme, help smooth the transition from learn to swim to the club, and to lift the quality of our engagement and support for our athletes and families.






Milla Theobald

I have been with Swim Rotorua since i was 8 years old as a competitive swimmer. This passion lead me to do my NZ Swim Teacher course which I passed in 2018 and I have been coaching with Tara and the Junior Academy ever since and enjoy this side of swmming. I enjoy Open Water events but I am not currently competitive swimmer registered. My swimming journey has been fun filled with lessons learned and friendships made. I have also recently moved from Mini-Stock racing to Stockcars.





Kate Elvy

I started swim coaching in 2018 having compleated most of my training at Lynmore School. I have been coaching along side Tara at the Aquatic Centre since qualifying as a swim instructor. In my spare time I like hanging out with friends and family, either at the lake or beach. Although I do not swim competitivly, growing up at Lake Rotoma and Wainui Beach maens I have been in the water from a very early age and have been playing competitive waterpolo for 8 years





Hazel Hagan

I  enjoy being pooldeck and coaching with the Junior Academy for Swim Rotorua it is a lot of fun and very satisfying seeing the improvment that happens with young swimmers.. I was a competitive swimmer in the past when i was much younger. 

I really enjoy my coaching and competing with Water Polo too. My other interests include Speech and Drama, Music and Theatre



Lucia Watt

I am an ex john Paul College student who finished in 2019 and am currently studying vetinary nursing. I work part time and volunteer at VetOra animal hospital as a vetinary nurse.

I am a qualified swim instructor and for the past two years have been coacing part time for Swim Rotorua. I have also taught at the Making a Difference program in the last two terms at schools around the Rotorua disterict. I love coaching for Swim Rotorua. it is such a privalage seeing kids make new friendships and satisfying to see them progress through the levels. 

I am a dedicated team member to all Junior Academy and returned to swim with Metro Squad for some general fitness for myself. I love being part of the team supporting, cheering and congratulating  everyone at swim meets, especially when they smash their PB's 

My interests include animals, travelling, music and swimming.



Samantha Harliwich

Swimming is my passion and has been since I was a swimmer competing in my teens. My coaching background comes from working as a swim teacher in Auckland. Having developed my skills there, I decided to become a Primary school teacher and bestow my enthusiasm for teaching and learning in a classroom. I have now been a school teacher for some 27 years. Swimming is a life skill that all New Zealanders should be able to do.

A quote from Michael Phelps sums up my feelings about swimming – ‘Swimming is normal for me. I’m relaxed, I’m comfortable, and I know my surroundings. It’s my home’.