Aquatica Coaching Staff

Head Coach, Holly Hjartarson

Aquatica Head Coach Holly EdigerHolly Hjartarson has been coaching with Aquatica Synchro since the club formed in 2009. Before transitioning in to the head coach role, she was a senior coach within the club, coaching Aquatica’s competitive athletes and assisting with recreational programs.

Holly also coached the 2015 Manitoba Provincial team and has worked as Programs Development Coordinator for Synchro Swim Manitoba for 5 years. She was also selected as an apprentice coach for Synchro Canada’s 13-15 National team in 2016.

Holly has been involved in synchronized swimming since she started swimming when she was 9 in 2000. She competed at her first Canadian Nationals soon after in 2004 and competed national events all over Canada until 2013.  She has also competed at US Junior Nationals as well as the France Open. She now swims as a Competitive Masters athlete and competed in the 2014 World FINA Masters in Montreal.

Holly has won many provincial events over the years including the Team, Duet, solo and Combination event and made it to the podium nationally for Senior Duet and Team. She has had the honour of representing her fellow athletes throughout her athletic career as both Athlete Representative for Synchro Swim Mantioba and Western Athlete Representative for Western Canada on Synchro Canada’s Athlete Council. In 2009 she was awarded an Athlete award from Synchro Canada for community service.

Holly started her coaching career when she was 15 in 2006. She has coached at many levels and ages since then in both recreational and competitive streams. She is a Competition Development NCCP Certified and is a Learning Facilitator for synchro coaching courses.

Holly hold a Physical Education degree, and Education Degree from the University of Manitoba and taught Grades 1 & 2 at an inner city school before shifting her full career focus to coaching.


Coach, Shelley Ganske

Coach ShelleyShelley has an extensive background as a synchro coach and dry land trainer. After competing as a Provincial synchro athlete for 6 years, Shelley became certified as an NCCP Level 3 coach and judge. She served the Winnipeg Aqualinas club as head coach for 5 years and then joined with the Manitoba Aquadians Swim Club in 1991. In 2009, she was a co-founder of the Aquatica Synchro Club where she became head coach in 2012.  In 2016, Shelley decided to switch her role with Aquatica to mentor coach.

She has enjoyed many roles as coach, assistant coach, mentor and dry land trainer for all levels from recreational to elite athletes. She was the assistant coach and manager for the Canada Winter Games teams in 1991 and 2007 and participated as a judge in the 1999 Canada Games.

Shelley is a member of the Manitoba Fitness Council and holds a specialty in resistance training. She has a personal trainer certification from the American Council on Exercise and is also an Evaluator of Fitness Leaders. Along with designing personal and group dry land programs for synchro athletes at all levels (in season and off season), she has designed programs for Ringette and Competitive Swimming.

Shelley stays current attending countless workshops, seminars and conferences for synchro and fitness. She is also a Master Facilitator and Evaluator for Synchro Canada and enjoys teaching the Synchro Instructor and Intro to Competitions National Certification courses to new and advancing coaches across Manitoba.

Shelley works at Diagnostic Services Manitoba as a Pathology Quality Specialist.  When she isn’t working or coaching, you will see her out on her bike, swimming or running as half marathons and triathlon have become her past time passion.  You will also see her participate in an occasional synchro practice with her masters team where she competed with them at the 2014 World Masters Championships in the combo routine.

Coach, Kiersten McLeod

Kiersten McLeod started synchronized swimming at the age of nine and has now been involved with the sport for eleven years. She was introduced to synchro in Southern Alberta and trained there for three years before moving to Manitoba. In Winnipeg, she has competed at the provincial and national level in team and duet at competitions across Canada. She has been coaching since 2011 and has coached Aquasquirts, Learn to Synch, and land training for competitive athletes. Synchro is a family affair for Kiersten, as her younger sister and cousin are both athletes with Aquatica.


Kiersten is passionate about aquatics in general, and has been a lifeguard and swimming instructor with the City of Winnipeg for two years. Kiersten is currently in her third year at the University of Manitoba and is pursuing an honours degree in History.


Coach, Emma Barber-Dueck

Emma Barber-Dueck has been coaching for Aquatica Synchro since 2012. She has coached the Aquasquirts and Learn to Synch recreational programs, as well as the 10 & under competitive team. Emma has been swimming since the age of 11 and has had the opportunity to participate in provincial and national competitions. She continues her passion for swimming by being a member of Aquatica’s competitive masters team.
In addition to coaching, Emma teaches swimming lessons and lifeguards at the University of Manitoba pool. She is currently a student at the University of Manitoba and is in her third year of her Nursing degree.



Coach, Megan Cavers

Megan Cavers started synchronized swimming at age nine, jumping right in to the competitive program and following in her older sister’s footsteps. She competed at the Provincial level for three years and then at the National Level for six. Megan was a member of the Manitoba Provincial team for a number of years and was honored to attend various National training camps and competitions as a representative of Manitoba. Megan retired as an athlete after competing in both the duet and team at the Canada Winter Games in 1999.

While still participating as an athlete Megan started coaching and once she had retired as an athlete moved on to coaching at the Provincially competitive level. Megan co-founded and coached with the Masters club, Sirens Synchro and eventually returned to the pool as an athlete again. The Sirens competed at the Canadian Masters Nationals and even hosted the competition. Megan then retired again for about 7 years to start a family.

Megan now has 3 children, 2 boys, Spencer & Milo and 1 girl, Zoë. Finding her way back to the pool yet again. She would say the best thing about being a part of the synchronized swimming community is the life-long friendships and knowing you will always be welcomed back.

Coach, Elisa Santin

Elisa Santin has been involved in synchro for over 10 years. Starting at the age of nine she competed provincially for five years and then nationally for five. She has enjoyed travelling all over Canada and the United States to train and compete. She has been named to Manitoba’s provincial team for several years and more recently competed at the Canada Winter Games representing Manitoba in the team and solo events.

Elisa began her coaching career at 16 when she started volunteering during synchro camps and try-its for Synchro Swim Manitoba. She coached rec for a few years before moving into coaching competitive groups in the 2015/2016 season. She is delighted to coach the 10&U  competitive team currently as well as our recreational masters program.

Elisa is a new member on Aquatica’s competitive masters team. She is a student at the University of Winnipeg and just finished serving her second term on Synchro Swim Manitoba’s board as the Athlete Rep.

Coach, Katelyn McGuffin

Katelyn is a strong believer in life long learning and loves this sport for the constant challenge it provides. She has been in synchro since she was 9 and has continued ever since into her adult life. With the many years of synchro experience, she has had the opportunity to swim in every category from figures to teams, combos, duets and even try out solo. These experiences have taken her all over the country and she has even had the privilege to compete at the Fina Master Worlds in Sweden. 
Katelyn has been involved with the sport in many ways and loves that she can continue to stay involved by coaching and swimming. She was on the provincial board in the past and represented team Manitoba at the Canada Winter Games. She has been coaching since she was a teenager and has loved seeing many athletes strive for excellence in this sport. She enjoys working with children and youth, pushing the athletes to reach their goals, and enjoys being in the water with beginner synchro swimmers. 
Outside of the pool, she is a school teacher, yoga enthusiast, and loves spending her summer at the lake with family and friends.