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The Crimson Connection

The student news site of Cypress Woods High School

The Crimson Connection

The student news site of Cypress Woods High School

The Crimson Connection

How Ben Romig caught his stride

Senior Ben Romig was the underdog that no one expected to go on to win state championships before he was 18. With only four years of competitive diving under his belt, traveling across the country to participate and dominate state championships came with a plethora of scholarships and spending over 25 hours a week on training alone Romig is one of the youngest, and most impressive, competitive divers in the state of Texas.

Out of all of the sports a seven year old could play, Romig caught his stride in the aquatic sport and competed for more than ten years before finding his love in diving. Romig’s switch from swimming to diving was a startling choice that left those close to him confused and wanting him to continue his pursuit in swimming.

“Even after I started and after going through [diving], I wasn’t that great, in fact,” Romig said. “My parents didn’t really see me taking off with it, and my coaches weren’t going to kick me off the team, but they really nudged me into that direction a little bit.”

Before Romig could enter high school, COVID struck, leaving Romig with the choice to either do what everyone else was doing and play video games all day– or he could refine his skills in diving. Romig chose the latter and spent his time in quarantine practicing dry land, a form of workout for aquatic athletes to practice in foam pits rather than pools.

“The thing about diving is that it is very visual, and I would say that it is about 80% mental and 20% physical, it’s a very big mental game. And so that’s what I did everyday, I started visualizing everything, all of my dives at the time… basically, after that everything began to transform,” Romig said. “My coaches were so surprised; They were like, ‘We don’t even know who this kid is anymore’ I had a lot of improvement from there, I mean I basically sky rocketed, and we’re here now.”

After entering into high school and making diving his passion, Romig had to learn to overcome the harsh mental blocks that diving demands of the participants– a skill that many performers struggle with.

“The hardest part of the sport specifically is definitely the mental game; I’ve finally gotten into the rhythm of whenever you feel fear you’ve just got to force yourself to chase after it even more, and it can get really tough, especially when you’re standing on a ten meter platform,” Romig said. “When I first started, mental blocks were coming up left and right and I realized after watching some divers is that’s what really keeps people back from really improving.”

While diving has proven to be mentally demanding, Romig has excelled in his sport and has gone on to be the only male diver on the Texas 6A Elite Swim team and placed second in the American University (AU) swimming and diving. While all these accomplishments are quite glamorous, Romig feels that there are other things that he loves most about his sport.

“The most rewarding I would say is definitely the opportunities diving has given me,” Romig said. “We call it ripping when you dive into the water really clean and there’s no splash– when you rip the water it’s one of the best feelings ever.”

Romig plans to continue his diving career into his adult life and throughout college, regardless of which college he commits to. Romig also plans on participating in the Olympics within the next ten years.

“My goal would be to at least be a finalist at the Olympic trials and not necessarily to make it to the Olympics, but I feel like that would be the best conclusion because USA diving and those Olympic trials, it’s tough,” Romig said. “It’s arguably harder than the Olympics itself.”

With all of the success Romig has found in diving, the small community of the sport encourages all of their participants equally no matter the accomplishments made.

“Diving is a very, very small community…And once you have that group, like in a club, team, or even a high school team, once you have that team you really start to push each other and you form a bond with them– that’s really powerful I think,” Romig said. “Because then you’re doing it for yourself, but with the support of everyone around you; It’s really hard to put into words and describe, it’s such a great feeling.”

With over four years of competitive experience and a lifetime of achievement, Romig encourages anyone who wants to join diving to take the initiative.

“For anyone wanting to get into diving, I would just say that it takes work; It’s going to be mentally challenging, and it’s going to be more of a mental challenge than a physical challenge,” Romig said. “I would just say to not let the fear get to you, and when you do feel that feel excited about it; Obviously that’s easier said than done, but that’s part of the thrill.”

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About the Contributor
Lauren Lavers, Publications Liason
Hello! My name is Lauren and I am the Publications Liaison for our press staff. I am a Senior and this is also my fourth year on the yearbook staff. I have always loved journalism and I have been assisting the newspaper for years so I am thrilled to be a part of the staff this year. My favorite band is The 1975 and Matt Maeson and I love reading horror books in my free time.

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