Argentine Paralympic Swimmer Builds Pool to Practice in During Coronavirus Pandemic

Sebastian Galleguillo, 18, trains daily in the pool he constructed with his father so he can stay in shape for the 2021 Deaflympics in Brazil.

An Argentine Paralympic athlete and his dad came up with an ingenious way to continue training amid the coronavirus pandemic. 

Sebastian Galleguillo, 18, is training for the 2021 Deaflympics in Brazil, Reuters reported, and was worried that his time out of the pool during his country's lockdown could affect his progress. So he and his father decided to build a pool in their backyard. 

"I said to my mom: I want to train again because I am becoming rigid, I am losing mobility in my body," Galleguillo told Reuters. "It's not the same to train outside as being in the water."

His father, Edmundo Hernandez, who works as a bricklayer, gathered up plastic sheets, logs, metal drums, an old tank and more than 100 gallons of water to make his son's pool. 

"We made do with what we had here and we started building," Hernandez, 47, told Reuters. "The first day was nailing logs on the floor, the second was putting sheets and plastics so that the water does not drain. Later, we bought a 15-meter-long by 4-meter-wide plastic that forms a bag and that is what holds the water."

Argentina went into lockdown on March 20, and a recent surge in COVID-19 cases has led authorities to extend it until at least July 17 around the capital city of Buenos Aires. The virus has infected 111,146 people in Argentina and killed 2,050 so far, according to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center.

Galleguillo and his family heat the water using wood, since it is winter in the Southern Hemisphere. But the athlete said it feels good to be back in the water and doing what he loves. 

"With swimming I am one, I am completely me," he told Reuters. "In there, I do not depend on my hearing. I am in the water and I only need my body to train."