Mon, 09 Jun 2003

MM Focus: Swimming feat by two-year-old

By Muzliza Mustafa

SMALL WONDER: Two-and-a-half-year-old Kam Su-Sze entered the Malaysia Book of Records last Tuesday as the first toddler to swim the longest distance (50 metres non-stop) in local history. Su-Sze was presented with a certificate of endorsement yesterday by MBR managing director Datuk Danny Ooi. The ceremony at the Community Centre of Sierra Mas Resort Homes, Sungai Buloh, Selangor, was the culmination of 10 months of training in the pool with instructor Sam Tan Cheng San. — NST picture by Amirudin Sahib
NEVER in their wildest dreams had little Kam Su-Sze's parents ever imagined that she would enter the Malaysia Book of Records (MBR) at the tender age of two years.
The toddler became the youngest Malaysian in the MBR for her swimming feat that earned her a listing under ‘the longest distance swimming by a toddler'.
Su-Sze's record of swimming 50 metres was set during a swimming lesson a week ago under her instructor, Sam Tan Cheng, 39.
Yesterday, she was presented a certificate of acknowledgement by MBR's managing director, Datuk Danny Ooi, at a ceremony in Sungai Buloh.
"I hope her achievement will inspire young children and their parents. As a developing country, Malaysia needs its citizens to be excellent so we can achieve Vision 2020," said Ooi.
"To accomplish the goal, parents have to start exploring the talents of their young ones by involving them in all kinds of activities, like what Su-Sze's parents have done," he said.
He added that accompanying their children during such activities will not only tighten the family bond, but will also bring out the best in the children.
Su-Sze's success story started when she was six months old, when her mother, Cheng Kim Tho, registered her for swimming lessons.
"We wanted her to be comfortable around water as our house has a swimming pool and a fish pond," she said.
When she was 21 months, her mother enlisted Tan's services to coach Su-Sze and her friends' children.
The first month saw them crying their lungs out and rejecting Tan's teachings. However, the effort paid off when Su-Sze showed much progress after six months.
Even though lessons were conducted once a week and only for 45 minutes, she proved that she was able to swim further than the others.
"In her first six months of lessons, she could swim up to 21 metres. I knew that she could improve, and she proved that by swimming 50 metres without assistance," said Tan.
"I am happy and proud that she has shown so much progress within this short time." Cheng said she was amazed that the survival skill acquired by Su-Sze had somehow become a record.
"I was surprised when Tan suggested entering Su-Sze into the Malaysia Book of Records. He was excited about the prospect," she said.
Cheng said if her daughter wished to pursue the sport professionally, she has no objections although her objective was only to equip her with swimming skills.
Su-Sze's record will be listed in the Malaysia Book of Records Gold Edition, which will be out soon.
This will be the fourth edition, and will also be a tribute to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad.