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Competitive swimming

The goal of competitive swimming is to be the fastest over a givendistance. Competitive swimming became popular in the nineteenthcentury, and comprises 36 individual events - 18 male events and18 female events, however the IOC only recognizes 34 events - 17male and 17

female events. Swimming is an event at the Summer Olympic Games, where male and female athletes compete in 13 ofthe recognized events each. Olympic events are held in a 50meter pool. Competitive swimming's international governing body is

FINA (Fédération Internationale de Natation), the InternationalSwimming Federation .

The four competitive strokes are the butterfly, backstroke,breaststroke, and front crawl (freestyle). "Freestyle" and "frontcrawl" are often used interchangeably, but " freestyle" properlyrefers to an unregulated competitive event rather than to anyparticular stroke. Swimmers generally choose to swim front crawlin a freestyle event since it is the fastest stroke. In

events thatrequire specific strokes, disqualification will occur if the stroke isnot swum correctly, for example if the swimmer does not touch thewall with two hands during breaststroke or

butterfly.

These strokes can be swum individually or together in an individual medley (IM). The IM order is: 1) butterfly, 2) backstroke, 3)breaststroke, and 4) freestyle. There are two types of relays:medley and freestyle. The medley relay has a different strokeorder. In the medley, the order is: 1) backstroke, 2) breaststroke,3) butterfly, and 4) freestyle. Each of the four swimmers in therelay swims a predetermined distance, dependent on the overalllength of the relay. The three relay lengths are 200 meters oryards, 400 meters or yards, and 800 meters or yards (which is onlyswum freestyle). In a 50 meter pool, each swimmer swims onelength for the 200 relay, two lengths for the 400 relay, and fourlengths for the 800 relay. In a 25 meter or yard pool, eachswimmer swims two lengths for the 200 relay, four lengths for the400 relay, and eight lengths for the 800 relay.There have also been100 yard relays that have

been done by 8 and under swimmers,but is very rare except in summer recreation leagues.

Many full-size competition pools in the United States have a length of 50meters and a width

of 25 yards (the Olympic pool size, allowingboth short course (25 m or 25 yd pool) and long

course (50 mpool) races to be held.

There are several types of officials:

· A starter sends the swimmers off the blocks and may also call a false-start if a swimmer

· leaves the block before the starter sends them;

· finish judges determine the order of finish and also make surethe swimmers finish in accordance with the rules (two handssimultaneously for breaststroke and butterfly, on the back for

· backstroke, etc.)

· turn judges check that the swimmers' turns are within rules;

· stroke judges check the swimmers' strokes;

· time keepers time the swims;

· the referee takes overall responsibility for running the race andmakes the final decisions



If an official catches a swimmer breaking a rule concerning thestroke he or she is swimming,

that swimmer is said to bedisqualified (commonly referred to as a "DQ") and the swim is

not considered valid.

Masters swimming is a club sport for adults who have acompetitive spirit. Swimming at this

level differs from competitiveclub swimming. In swim meets masters are allowed to compete inthe 50, 100 and 200 of backstroke, fly and breaststroke and the50, 100, 200, 500 and 1650 offreestyle. The age groups areorganized into 5 year increments (Masters, 1). “Swimming has

continually been identified as the best way to exercise. Stress reduction, weight control,

cardio vascular fitness, reducedcholesterol, muscle tone and endurance are all positively

influenced by exercise. Masters Swimmers swear by it (Masters, 1).” Shoulderinjuries are the

most common because of the repetitive motion offreestyle, butterfly, and backstroke. Knee

injuries often occur from breast stroke due to the unnatural kick. Incorrect stroke

technique can also lead to injuries.


Date: 2015-12-18; view: 823


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