Experienced Water Polo Coach Joins the YMCA to Lead New Water Polo Programs

The New Canaan YMCA is proud to introduce its new Water Polo Coach, Danilo Sierra. Sierra joins the Y with experience both playing and coaching water polo at a variety of levels, and brings with him a wealth of knowledge and understanding of the sport.

Sierra grew up in Columbia and has been playing water polo since the age of 12, when he started his career with the club Belen in the swimming league of Atioquia (State of Columbia). Sierra then had the opportunity, at the age of 15, to play for the 16U youth team of the state, Antioquia, for two consecutive years before coming to the United States in 2010. With less opportunity to play in the United States, Sierra turned to coaching in search of the same passion, joy and freedom he felt while playing. Sierra’s coaching career began at Staples High School in Westport, CT, where he continues to serve as the head coach for both the boys and girls water polo teams. Sierra is also the head coach and founder of the Westport Youth Water Polo Program, which strives to show young people the enjoyment of water polo while also teaching good sportsmanship, respect and teamwork. This program was founded in 2016 and now has more than 40 young athletes who participate in the program. Sierra also continues to play water polo for the Masters Water Polo group at Greenwich Aquatics, where he has participated in various tournaments throughout the Northeast and Central America.

“I’m excited to watch the sport of water polo grow and expand here at the New Canaan YMCA,” says Joe Somma, Competitive Diving Director. “[Sierra] has so much positive energy and excitement about the sport and this will be contagious to our members and our community.”

Water polo has been a continuously growing program at the Y, and has recently added additional programming. This includes a House program, which offers participants the opportunity to not only learn and improve on the necessary skills used in the sport, but also to use and strengthen these skills through friendly scrimmages. An introductory program will also continue to be offered; Splashball will provide the basic skills for participants including eggbeating, ball handling, and shooting. Furthermore, an organized adult water polo program will also be available on Sunday afternoons, where participants, ages eighteen and older, can learn the sport and brush up on their skills. The overall goal of the adult water polo program is training, instruction, and further development of the essential skills. Finally, YMCA members have the opportunity to take part in evaluations and lessons where the coaching staff will evaluate and place individuals in the proper program to help with development in the sport. These programs promote healthy competition while allowing participants to make new friends and connections, countywide.

“I am very excited to start this new program at the New Canaan YMCA,” says Sierra. “I feel proud knowing that I will have the opportunity to share my experiences, expand the popularity of water polo, and help young people have fun in a healthy and safe atmosphere.”

The future of water polo looks extremely bright under the helm of Sierra, who displays immense passion and energy for the sport.

If you wish to learn more about the new water polo programs at the New Canaan YMCA, please contact Joe Somma at jsomma@newcanaanymca.org or 203-920-1659.