Wednesday, April 30, 2008
I got a comment on my ABC NEWS video-profile of Dara Torres from someone posting anonymously. They enclosed a suspicious link but upon investigation it appears to be a pretty decent site. I had noted that Dara Torres looked amazingly flexible and the poster commented that it was all about Innovative Body Solutions.
I went to the site and I found some pretty useful information in the About US section. There they have photo illustrations and several paragraphs of a couple of important stretches as to how they are done safely and correctly. See the picture to the right. More stretches here [Link]
Here is a 'Dara centric page' in the About Us section with links to videos and audio reports of her swimming and stretching as well. [Link]
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
"I think this is more my forte than some of the events I have had success in before."
"People have seen me swim 200m but this is an opportunity for people like me to show our aerobic capacity
"There are a lot of other competitors who know this event a lot better than me but I have been working with Ky on a strategy," Hackett said. [Link]
Here is an article from last December talking up how well he can do in this event: [Link]
I will honestly be more impressed with Grant Hackett than I am with Ian Thorpe if Hackett can win in both the 1500 and the open water races. I would find it summarily acceptable for anyone to use the names Michael Phelps, Grant Hackett and Mark Spitz in the same sentence when discussing the best male freestyle swimmers to ever swim on this earth.
Torres swims five days a week and lifts weights four days a week at the Coral Springs Aquatic Center in preparation for the upcoming trials and to keep up with the younger swimmers.
“A benefit is having a coach like Michael who knows what I can and cannot do with my age. Also, it is a lot about recovery. I get massages and do stretching exercises after every training session to recover from a day’s work,” she said. ..." [Link]
He is favoring Grant Hackett over Vladimir Dyatchin and Thomas Lurz and he also provides his reasons why. He was very generous with his US woman's picks and though I hope he is right, I suspect that Edith van Dijk of the Netherlands will do much better than 9th place; especially if her goggles don't get torn off her face like they did last time. I'm thinking 3rd for her.
Micha Burden should do better than 5th if she doesn't piss anybody off and get another rib broken. (These girls think they are playing hockey or something. It reminds me of a Rodney Dangerfield joke: I went to a boxing match and hockey game broke out!) [Link]
Monday, April 28, 2008
I wonder if breaststroke is more demanding on the Speedo LZRs than a more linear stroke such as backstroke or freestyle?
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Consequently, I was worried some fast guys would climb out of the woodwork at this meet and bump me off the list so I figured a little "tech doping" seemed like an viable, desperate, option and so I dropped the $165 on a midnight, black, Nike Hydra.
The suit arrived in a timely manner and it fit very well. The suit is very lightweight. My Speedo Fastskin II leggings were heavier and far harder to put on. Also, I never came close to swimming a "personal best" in the Fastskins and in a fit of anger, I gave them away.
At today's meet I decided not to warm up in the Hydra but rather warm up in a TYR brief instead and swim the 50SCY race with a dry suit versus a wet one. While waiting for my race, I saw a girl wearing a blueseventy and I asked her what she thought about it and she said she too was just going to jump in and see what her first impressions would be.
When the bell rang, I leaped in and I felt fast for the first lap, on the second lap the suit didn't feel as fast but I was only .02 off my personal best for the event in a time of 26:26. The time was a bit surprising since the air temp was at least 90 degrees today and I felt like I was melting before my event. My mouth was dry, I was starting to sweat since I was wearing a midnight, black, speedsuit, a latex cap and goggles and there was little to no shade. When the bell sounded it was sheer relief to jump in.
All of the above got repeated for the 100 free as well which was held 10-minutes later yet I did well in that event too. I swam a sloppy race only squeezing in one breath on the first lap and my turnover felt like it was in slow-motion yet in the 100 free I was only .07 off my personal best, a 58.67.
What I don't like about the suit, and the woman I spoke with who was wearing the blueseventy said the exact same thing to me after her race, is that both of us have the same sort of body type whereas we both have more of an exaggerated arch in the small of backs at our lumbar region hence, when I wore the Hydra I developed an air pocket in that area which is great till you do a flip turn. Post turn, it felt a bit floppy or saturated. This young lady said the same thing about the blueseventy. The conclusion she arrived at was that the suit would be great for a triathlon and my conclusion is that the Hydra would "motor" in a 50LCM leaving me to believe that I will comfortably break 30 seconds wearing one. epilogue: $165 was an amazing value considering most sppedsuits start at $300+ range all the way up to $550 for the LZR.
What I leaned about speedsuits is that the fit is more superior than the material. Speedsuits should be tailored and not purchased off the rack.
BTW, I came second today in the 50 free thwarting four challengers but I got beat by the fifth one and I don't believe I will make the top 10 for the 50. Maybe next year.
I have films of the event coming, even a tee-shirt relay. :-)
Saturday, April 26, 2008
Amaury Leveaux (
switches suits and) just misses Eamon Sullivan's 50m free world record by .1 of a second!
From the TYR website: "... At the French Olympic Trials Amaury Leveaux broke the European National Record in the 50m Freestyle and recorded the 2nd Fastest Time in History wearing TYR's latest generation swimsuit technology Tracer Rise. Amaury clocked in an astonishing fast time of 21.38, .1 shy of the World Record. ...
Amaury Leveaux is the first and only swimmer in history to swim under 22 seconds in the 50m Freestyle (LC) and swim under 1:47 in the 200m Freestyle (LC). Wearing TYR Tracer Rise, Amaury recorded his fast speed of 1:46:54 in the 200m Freestyle (4-21-08) and 21.38 in the 50m Freestyle (4-26-08) at the 2008 French Olympic Trials. ..."[Link]
Are these reduced times the result of "tech doping" or "placebo doping?" I wish Mythbusters would do a show on it.
I read that Cullen Jones is training now with David Marsh at WCSN.com: "...Cullen's call came as a bit of surprise," Marsh told WCSN.com by phone last week from the short course world championships in England. "But his willingness to make a shift indicates that he understands the urgency and total motivation needed for us to push to make the U.S. team. ..."
Marsh had this to say: "... "He needs to get substantially faster and there are several ways to do it," Marsh said. "First, we have to connect his strength to his swimming strength. There's vertical strength [Jones' has a 35-inch vertical leap] and prone strength and we have to apply the vertical to water. Second - the starts. There's always hundredths of a second to find there. Third - race strategy. And fourth - probably most important, his focus and confidence when he steps on the blocks." ..."
I purchased this video last eek and it arrived in a timely manner. The most important part of any swim DVD is the presentation. For me, the more views and slow-motion the better. Most Swim DVDs present their work from the side and the front whereas this DVD presents a lot of 3/4 views from different angles such as above and below the surface. I love the underwater stuff.
As for the content, I would say that this DVD is designed for the beginning-intermediate to advanced swimmer. The primary focal point from Kara Lynn Joyce's point of view is symmetry and balance. (Watching her sprint is like viewing like a watch mechanism. (See the video above)
She brings something up that I have never really addressed in my own freestyle and that is the subject of balance. I like her thoughts on upper arm placement during the catch, the breath and head placement and I am going to swim with those ideas in mind.
I have a meet tomorrow and I wish I would have received this video a week ago. [Link]
Found at Not.com, here is an infinity edged Sorgente Bathtub by Teuco: [Link]
I don't have enough adjectives to describe how elegant and well designed this tub is.
Friday, April 25, 2008
I think the last so cal shark kill was in the 1920's though my friend Scott says there was a kill off of Point Dume in Malibu in the 1980's.
Snippet: "...Witnesses told lifeguards that a “big gray shark” attacked Martin, biting both his legs, said Solana Beach Marine Safety Capt. Craig Miller.
Martin was swimming with a group of about 10 others, heading north from Fletcher Cove, near Tide Park, when the attack occurred. The group regularly swims in the area. All the swimmers were wearing wet suits. ..." [Link]
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Now, here is the best part: If you look really close, who is that bald guy in the center left, and the Africican guy in the back and that really hot brunette to the left, and what about that guy doing the flip turn? Well, you are looking at : Rowdy Gaines, Cullen Jones, Janet Evans, and Brendan Hansen.
Here is a link to a hi-rez version: [Link]
Here is a link to the press release: [Link]
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
She went out to fast, way to fast. Look at the world record line that follows them.
Update: I am adding her reaction to the race since it is being buried at You Tube:
If you are in hurry, this press release from the EarthTimes had this to say: "...TYR is the second-largest performance swimwear company in North America and has a brand presence in more than 80 countries. Over the last decade, TYR has pioneered technical swimsuit developments through research at International Center for Aquatic Research (ICAR, U.S. Olympic Training Center), the University of Buffalo's Center for Research and Development in Special Environments (CRESE) and conducted fabric validation testing by Bureau Veritas, an independent product performance agency. TYR was the first company to decompose the components of overall total drag in racing swimsuits into three elements: form drag, pressure drag and wave drag.
Tracer Rise utilizes Rapid Boundary Technology, the fusion of a non-permeable, polyurethane micro-coating to a proprietary lightweight water repellent woven fabric assisting the swimmer in a higher body position in the water and drag reduction.
This latest TYR technical swimsuit offers muscle contour seaming, designed to limit muscle undulation and maximize oxygen efficiency to the swimmer's core muscles. Hydrophobic properties provide maximum water repellency to eliminate absorption and restrict air trapping during high velocity strokes. Constructed from the strongest micro-fiber available for performance swimsuits, Tracer Rise offers athletic performance benefits to the competitor by providing high tensile strength flat seams that aid compression and muscle contouring essential for streamlining the swimmer's body through the water. ..." [Link]
1) Develop arm strength through vigorous swimming and butterfly sets
2) Elevate testosterone levels with a victory at Australian Olympic trials
3) Consume 16 alcoholic beverages
4) Wait for victim to extend a hand in a congratulatory gesture
5) Throw your elbow into victim's face as hard as you can
The article states that D'Arcy consumed 16 drinks. The victim, Simon Cowley, should sue not only D'Arcy but the bar as well. No bar should serve 16 drinks to anyone even if the drunk in question has an ambulance team as their "designated driver."
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
From USA Today: "...Today at the French Olympic trials in Dunkirk, U.S.-based TYR Sports will officially unveil its new Tracer Rise suit, a challenger to the much-hyped Speedo LZR Racer. Swimmers wearing the Speedo suit have set 35 world records in recent weeks.
Speedo claims the LZR Racer can improve performance by up to 2%. TYR claims double the benefit — up to 4%.
"The time drops are well-documented," said TYR founder Steve Furniss...." [...]
While the LZR Racer has ultrasonically bonded seams to help reduce drag, the Tracer Rise has compression panels that contour certain muscle groups to control movement.
On Tuesday, French swimmer Amaury Leveaux won the 200-meter freestyle wearing a Tracer. His winning time of 1 minute, 46.54 seconds is second-fastest in the world this year, behind 1:45.71 by world recordholder Michael Phelps — wearing a Speedo suit — posted in February [Link]
I wonder if the suit dynamics for a masters swimmer are actually accentuated more that that of an Olympian?
The photo above came from the TYR website from a press release therein regarding Amaury Leveaux new French national record in the 200 free: [Link]
Laure Manaudou wearing a 'TYR' suit that looks nothing like the 'TYR Tracer Light' that you can pre-order at the TYR website!
In this article at SMH.au.com: "...
DUNKIRK, France, - Swimming diva Laure Manaudou's Olympic campaign has hit choppy waters with the world record holder ruled out of the 200m freestyle in Beijing.
Manaudou, who lost her first 400 metres freestyle race in four years on Monday, did not wear the Arena suit of her sponsor on Tuesday, but the latest suit from rival swimwear company, TYR.
Co-founder of TYR, Steve Furniss an Olympic medalist from 1972, told the New York Times that "We're kind of flattered [about Manaudou's decision] since it's such a big and important event."..."
The article also covers the numerous distractions she has had these past 12 months as well suggesting that the suit may not be the problem. [Link]
"O2 Doping?" Just breathe pure oxygen; (empahsis on pure), then hold your breath for 16-minutes-nine seconds!
It appears that we have a shared reflex with dolphins: "...In his current training, he said, he does exercises every morning in which he breathes for no more than 12 minutes over the course of an hour, and he sleeps in a hypoxic tent in his Manhattan apartment that simulates the thin air at 15,000 feet above sea level. [...]
When Mr. Blaine began his breath-hold in the pool, his heart rate during the first minute fell to 46 from 81, a drop that was not entirely his own doing. Immersing the face in water produces a protective action in humans similar to that in dolphins, seals, otters and whales. Called the mammalian diving reflex, it quickly lowers the heart rate and then constricts blood vessels in the limbs so that blood is reserved for the heart and the brain.
By exploiting that reflex, free divers can remain active underwater for more than four minutes, and much longer if they remain still. The world-record holders have exceeded nine minutes after filling their lungs with ordinary air, and more than 16 minutes after inhaling pure oxygen. ..." [Link]
Could or would swimmers do this for the 100 or the 200 fly?
Monday, April 21, 2008
I bought a 'Nike' speedsuit for the "UCLA Bruins Masters Swim Meet" this weekend - Can you guess which one?
The TYR suit is not available yet and I am trying to make it into the SPMA Top 10 in the 50 SCY free for my age group. I am shooting for a :25+
Rupprath lost his 50-metre backstroke world record two weeks ago to Liam Tancock, who swam in a Speedo. If you listen to U.S. head coach Mark Schubert, an outspoken supporter, that just shows every record could fall at the Beijing Games due to the suit. ..."
Britta Stefen countered: "...I swim in Adidas and set my world record in the 100-metre freestyle in it two years ago," said Britta Steffen said. "With all this discussion, people shouldn't forget the suit doesn't swim alone. Inside is a person that has a good or bad day, and trained well or badly." [Link]Here is my suggestion to the German team, Ask Speedo for a handful of LZRs, TYR for some Tracer Lights, and even Nike for some Hydras. Race three events with each suit in an inter-squad scrimmage. Compare times and then make a sound decision as to what path you will take.
I suspect the suit that fits that particular person the best will produce the faster times for that unique individual.
I don't know what the European or Australian press are making of this incident but just about every article I read somehow ties the Speedo LZR or Arena's upcoming "solution" to it. [Link]
Friday, April 18, 2008
I am the first swimmer in the video swimming a 2:11+ for a 200 free. I thought I was going to do a 2:13 and subsequently that 2:11 felt good.
Here is a link to a higher-rez version at You Tube: [Link]
"No lines, no lanes. No walls, no mercy!" - Coach Steven Munatones quoted in the Wall Street Journal
Here is the link to the WSJ article: [Link]
If you havn't seen the 10kswim, go there and visit. A great primer on the sport.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
D'Arcy is facing charges of assault and assault occasioning grievous bodily harm for his alleged attack on Cowley, who suffered a broken jaw, broken nose, fractured eye socket, crushed cheekbone and fractured palate from just one punch. ..."
One punch? One single Punch? He must have a pretty big hand. [Link]
This article from The Australian states that 20 screws and some plates were drilled into Cowley's face to repair it. Yeah, it was more than one punch. [Link]
Link to a video of the announcement: [Link]
Thanks go out to Wendy for all the time and effort she put in to sending me these links!
Advertising Agency: 1861 United, Milan, Italy
Executive Creative Directors: Pino Rozzi, Roberto Battaglia
Art Director: Giorgio Cignoni, Niccolò Fedrigo
Copywriter: Marina D’Andrea, Danilo Tarquinio
Photographer: Garrigosa Studio, Barcelona
Retoucher: Garrigosa Studio, Barcelona
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
"... Stu Isaac of Speedo, however, said talks are ongoing with Vendt and Jensen. ..."
They also bring up Cullen Jones who says he is sticking with Nike and makes it clear that he appreciates them as well. [Link]
I have a feeling that some time after this Olympic year, the Speedo LZR is going to be deemed illegal just like the TYR Aquashift was. In my opinion FINA is now being confronted with the fact that they have seriously alienated a myriad of companies over their meek definition of the word fabric. (Speedo, I believe, has mixed or layered in urethane within their fabric. Hence, is it fabric anymore? Is the neoprene on the blueseventy fabric? I don't know?
There is a lot of FINA sponsorship dollars involved here and those alienated companies might begin to think that the triathlons and triathletes might be a better investment than swim meets and swim stars. In fact, sports agents may suffer over this too. If TYR isn't signing, and NIKE isn't signing, then there goes their "bidding wars."
I think FINA will soon begin to feel their pain in the form of fewer sponsored meets and lots of corporate acrimony for the investment dollars they have been summarily lost will not be taken lightly.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Originally found at Notcot.org
Swimming Australia media officer Kurt Hanson said the number of incidents was not uncommon for the event.
“You always get a handful; it’s just the nature of open-water swimming,” he said.
...One kid got kicked in the face and another suffered a dislocated shoulder but that’s very common as well. ...” [Link]
Sheesh! I don't think so, Mr. Hanson. In Hermosa Beach, California, first time Pier to Pier swimmers are vetted before they can compete.
"Swimming World CEO", Brent Rutemiller, was on NPR's "Day to Day" talking about the new 'Speedo LZR'
He also suggests that we may see some sponsored suit defectors in Beijing.
Here is a link to an audio of that NPR, Day to Day interview: [Link]
Monday, April 14, 2008
One team member pointed out that one of China's great contributions to the world was the invention of paper. Hence, the aluminum torch's Chinese scroll shape was born. ..." ... As Hill explains, the end product must meet some fairly rigid technical criteria. For one, it must be able to burn at the top of Mount Everest and must pass all kinds of weather-condition tests. [Link]
From Freshome.com: "... If you are looking for really something different, this might be it. Atkins has won an international competition to design a five-star resort hotel set within a beautiful 100 meter deep quarry in the Songjiang district close to Shanghai in China. I know that from these pictures the hotel looks almost unreal, but this project is expected to be completed by May, 2009. Its stunning concept designs inspired by the natural water and landscape features of the quarry captured the imagination of judges to quash competition from two other international firms. ..." [Link]
Found originally at Notcot.org
Shrugging, he [Christiano Portas, the head of Arena] added: "A new era in the sport kicks off today. We can fight for ethics but we stood alone when it came to everyone saying that the word 'fabric' in the rules was just a generic term. Now we explore many other things. ..."
FINA is compromising greatly for Arena is an aquatics sponsor who has invested a lot of time and money into FINA related events. Also, in my opinion, FINA knows that several suit companies could be destroyed over this NASA/Speedo innovation for no rival suit company has the time, money or engineers to match it.
Ironically enough, I got a phone call from a friend of mine who got to swim and talk about the new Speedo Lazr with an accomplised Olympic sprinter who wears one. My friend was told that the suit is truly amazing and it is not hype. The quote was something like, "when you are in the water you are going much faster." However, this Olympian emphasized that it is a high performance suit. You have to take your time putting it on especially if you are wet. It is very uncomfortable getting it on but when it is on it feels like skin.
I take these words to mean that one can drive a Lamborghini Reventón to work even though the car sits about 4.7 inches off the ground but it would be easier to drive to Infiniti G37 with a ground clearance of 6.3 inches, better gas mileage and a back seat and still enjoy the experience. However, if you are on the Autobahn, you want the Reventón for an experience you will never forget.
With a short shelf-life, one really has to evaluate how much they want to pay to go fast.
Thank you Wendy for sending the article. [Link]
Sunday, April 13, 2008
It was a good weekend for me at the SPMA Regionals. This year the event was held at the Marguerite Aquatics Complex in Mission Viejo, home of the Nadadores. This is the same pool that Kate Ziegler set her world record in the 1500 Free. That water is summarily holy.
I have to say that this Regionals meet was the most organized meet I have ever been too. Online registration through Club Assistant was both effortless and painless. The meet itself went extremely fast since each event utilized 10 lanes instead of 8. The results of each event were posted on the board generally within a half hour, and the results for the day were posted online that night. I am just really impressed with the Nadadores organization. Thank you Coach Mark!
On Saturday morning I drove the 68 miles from my house to the Regionals meet generally listening to European electronic music with a 120 BPM so I could get amped for the meet. When I arrived on Saturday morning, I warmed up, and got ready for the first meet of the day, the 200 free.
Now, I get stage fright when I race and sometimes it gets so bad that my heart rate goes up to 125 beats per minute while I am just sitting down in the chair waiting for my heat. I will try to get rid of it by hyperventilating but then I end up getting dizzy and then think I am about to have a stroke. It's the only activity in my life where I turn into a "Woody Allen" analog and it occurs in about 30% of my races.
So, on Saturday morning, the 200 Freestyle was one of those "Woody Allen" races. Again, I start running the usual bizarre scenarios through my head like what if my goggle twists around during the dive, pinches my eyelid shut while the other eye piece gets filled with water and forces me swim half blind? What will I do when that happens? Well, One second into the race I found out.
When the bell went off and I went in, my goggles twisted badly. My left eye was completely shut and my other eye looked like a looking through a goldfish bowl. Turns out there are three options you can do when this happens:
A) The Michael Phelps option - you just swim with your goggles messed up.
B) The Anthony Cistaro option - you throw them off you head and swim blurry eyed
C) The Clay Evans option where you swim to the other wall - clear them, push off and resume the race if you insist on the need to wear goggles.
Or, if you are a couple clowns short of circus like I am, you stop in the middle of the pool, take them off your head, shake them out, put them back on and start swimming from a dead stop. I finished the 200 Free in a 2:13+ which is just 2 seconds off my personal best. It only got better after that:
50 Free: 26.24 - Personal best! (3rd place out of 14 in my age group)
100 Free: 58.67 - Personal best! (5th out of 14 in my age group)
500 Free: 6:10.37 - Personal best! (Pending for results tonight)
With only 13 people, SCAQ placed 8th. Join us!
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Below are 19 links to extraordinary swim sites. These are the pages I have bookmarked and read often. There are a couple of sites that I am on the fence about; (Swim Network is one for I am waiting for them to develop a track record before I commit), and there are a bunch of sites I missed since I am tired tonight after competing at SPMA Regionals and I need to recharge for tomorrow. I will get to you! Also, I have race video of SPMA Regionals that I will post soon.
Swim.Net - A landing page for Southern California Aquatics or SCAQ. The largest Swim club in America. It's the club I swim with and a club that has Olympians; plural, and national champions for coaches.
Go Swim - Glenn Mills has made a virtual online swim school. Since most people learn a sport with their bodies rather than the written word, his swim videos are an amazing asset in regards to intellectually learning the art of swimming.
Omega Timing - Results captured and archived really fast. This is the site that those who cover races go to so as to report any results.
FINA - The governing body for all things aquatic. I like the new redesign of their site but I wish they would finish it. Their masters page is lacking but they do keep it current with aquatics related news.
Flowswimming - Delicious and informative; original and groundbreaking. See workouts, interviews and raw workout footage; totally yummy! Mark Savage would call it, "swim porn."
Timed Prelims - Started out as an edgy satire site but has grown into a great site for interviews. They are also very charitable to their local swim community. (I wish they would do another home page redesign for reversed out type on a blue background is hard to read. Still a great site though.)
Merritr - Merrit is quite accomplished as a swimmer, an automotive engineer, and a contributor to She can discussed with ease all about the dark arts of fluid dynamics, passive drag and drag coefficient models and how it relates to a swim suit.
Here is a Google map she made with every freaking kick buck pool on the West Side and surrounding LA area. (She skipped the Valley but that is okay!) Yes, she rules; so go be blown away about our selection of pools. Especially those in the UK! [Link]
Swimming World - You all know why this site is not only an asset but a daily read. I use their swim calculator at least once a week as well. [Link]
WCSN - this site has been very good to us. They let me post their content and all they ask in exchange is that I include a link. Note, they continually post videos to You Tube they have provided more swim content than any other website or media outlet I know off. Check out their innovative website.
Swim Room A swim site dedicated to elite swimmers which leans more towards personality profiles than race content. The site is full of photos, high quality video and wonderfully innocent blogs. On occasion they have linked to me and I am very flattered by that.
Just Add Water - San Francisco swimmers do not fear cold water and it astonishes me. Great info there regarding swimming in the San Francisco Bay. (I wish it was updated more though.)
The 17th Man - Joel Swims in West L.A. and blogs about his workouts and observations therein. If you want to get inside a swimmers head and read what it is like to to live and swim in West L.A., this is the blog.
Canuckswimmer - Scott was one of the first people to leave a comment at my blog. He is the Canuck swimmer and when he has an controversial opinion, it goes global. One subject he wrote about had a USMS message board topic on fire for about 12 or so pages.
Vanderbilt Y Masters - I love reading about open water events in New York and this is a charming blog filled with a New Yorker's; (a Noo Yourka), masters swimming point of view.
Uinnista - Famous people leave comments there and they are usually a week or so ahead of me. A GREAT swim blog with an edgy sense of humor.
Swim News - Craig Lord has been writing some really good stuff lately. He has really found a voice as of late and it is thoughtful.
USA Swimming - Our national governing body for the sport of swimming. I am a bit cross with them right now over the Flowswimming fiasco but the content still is good
Southern Pacific Masters Association - This is my local USMS afiliat. They do a great job of helping clubs put on meets in the Southerm Pacific Masters Zone. I called "Spee-Ma" for short and I get yelled at for doing so.
LMU Woman's Team - One of the pools that SCAQ swims at is LMU. Bonnie Adair, and Clay Evans coach the LMU womens team and hence I support that team and follow their meets.
From the FINA Website: "... It was also the session in which the USA and Australia intensively fought for first place on the medal table, with the advantage, for now, going to the ‘Stars and Stripes’ squad. The home team is also having a fantastic Championships, with the highest number of awards so far – 16. Ryan Lochte (USA) and Kirsty Coventry (ZIM) are the stars of the competition, amassing medals and World records. ..." And they are both wearing the Speedo "Spiderman" suit too.
But how about Kirsty Coventry from politically torn Zimbabwe? "... Coventry definitively became the brightest star of the 9th FINA World Swimming Championships, by getting on the fourth day of the competition her fourth gold medal and third World record.
Here is the gold, silver bronze and total medals awarded
4x100 M FREESTYLE RELAY
USA United States 3:08.44 WR
100 M BUTTERFLY
Adam Pine USA 50.09 CR
100 M BREASTSTROKE
Igor Borysik UKR 57.74 CR
100 M BUTTERFLY
Peter Mankoc SLO 50.04 CR
4x200 M FREESTYLE RELAY
AUS Australia 6:55.65 CR
50 M FREESTYLE
Duje Draganja CRO 20.81 WR
200 M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY
Ryan Lochte USA 1:51.56 WR
50 M BACKSTROKE
Liam Tancock GBR 23.41 CR
50 M BUTTERFLY
Adam Pine AUS 22.70 CR
100 M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY
Ryan Lochte USA 51.25 WR
100 M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY
Liam Tancock GBR 52.27 CR
400 M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY
Kirsty Coventry ZIM 4:26.52 WR
4x200 M FREESTYLE RELAY WR
NED Netherlands 7:38.90
100 M BACKSTROKE
Kirsty Coventry ZIM 57.99 CR
200 M BUTTERFLY
Mary Descenza (USA) 2:04.27 CR
50 M BREASTSTROKE
Jessica Hardy USA 29.58 WR
800 M FREESTYLE
Rebecca Adlington GBR 8:08.25 CR
100 M BACKSTROKE
Kirsty Coventry ZIM 57.10 CR
50 M BUTTERFLY
Felicity Galvez AUS 25.48 CR
200 M BACKSTROKE
Kirsty Coventry ZIM 2:00.91 WR
50 M BUTTERFLY
Felicity Galvez AUS WR
4x100 M MEDLEY RELAY
USA United States 3:51.36 CR
100 M FREESTYLE
Marleen Veldhuis NED 52.17 =CR
400 M FREESTYLE
Kylie Palmer AUS 3:59.23 CR
400 M FREESTYLE
Kylie Palmer AUS 3:59.23 CR
100 M BREASTSTROKE
Jessica Hardy USA 1:04.63 CRDay 4
200 M INDIVIDUAL MEDLEY
Kirsty Coventry ZIM 2:06.13 WR
4x100 M FREESTYLE RELAY
NED Netherlands 3:29.42 WR
50 M BACKSTROKE
Sanja Jovanovic CRO 26.71 CR
100 M BREASTSTROKE
Jessica Hardy USA 1:04.22 CR
Friday, April 11, 2008
Never Drug tested: Aaron Fike said he competed in the 'Craftsman Truck Series' races while he was on heroin!
Harvick and Stewart were reacting to an ESPN The Magazine story this week in which former driver Aaron Fike said he competed in Craftsman Truck Series races while he was on heroin.
Baseball, football, NASCAR, basketball, the more money a sport makes the less chance its athletes will be vigorously drug tested. That is my conclusion. Doping is never okay, but the degree of punishment towards a swimmer when caught is certainly more severe than that of a lineman or outfielder. [Link]
Thursday, April 10, 2008
"...The Genie is the technology itself. Once it is tried, tested and proven, there is no going back. Swimwear manufacturers have every right to bring new technology to the sport. Matter of fact, it is their responsibility. ...
"... Pandora is the consequences of technology not being regulated, standardized or evenly distributed to all on an even playing field. ...
"...The Wizard of Oz movie ends with everyone happy. This story may not end that way, especially when The Man finds Pandora's footprints leading all the way to Beijing. ..."
You have to read for it's quick emotional impact and the entertaining mash-ups; or mixed metaphors and genres, but even better they link to some "scientist's" page who has 23 technical articles regarding speedsuits and how they offer an unfair advantage.
Swimming World article: [Link]
"... Muscle compression is the key to the suit’s success but only incidentally, because the compression is not a design feature – it is merely a consequence of the design. The body fits into the suit rather than the suit fitting up against the body. It is a racing shell which is worn! Forget the fact the LZR Racer is made out of fabric. The suit is to all intents and purposes a racing shell – a boat, albeit a soft sided boat, but a boat nevertheless! And using a boat to reduce your drag is most definitely a swimming aid, and aids to swimming are specifically banned under FINA’s own rules. FINA was looking in the wrong place. The LZR Racer is illegal! ..." [Link]
Here is a PDF document issued by FINA regarding swimsuit, goggles, and cap specifications:
In section 3.1 B, the document states: "...Regular flat fabrics and exclusion of outside applications: the fabrics used shall be regular and shall not form outstanding shapes or structures, such as scales. No outside application shall be added on the fabrics (use of different fabrics, see below). ... It is further clarified that: the application of fabrics put on top of each other as a result of a manufacturing/application process to combine the fabrics is permitted provided that this remains in the usual thickness and does not create outstanding shape(s) or structure(s). ..."[Link]
"Natalie on the Half-Shell" above is a composited image I created by combining a scallop shell that I found from this website: [Link] And a promo image of the Speedo LZR posted at dailymail.co.uk here: [Link]
This paragraph really stood out: "... Carlile also hit on another issue of concern: Money. The Speedo swimsuit is expensive -- $500 for us civilians -- and even more for competitive swimmers, who must wear new suits every 10th swim. ..." That means if I swim in 10 meets throughout the year, I have to drop another $500 to maintain the speed integrity that the suit offers. That means if I swim 3-4 SCY races, 3-4 long course meter events, and finally 3-4 short course meter events, I have to put an extra $50 in the piggy bank for each meet to purchase a news suit. [Link]
Picture updated to feature Joel Greenshields, from Airdrie, Alta; which is somewhere in Canada near Calgary.
Also here is a fascinating quote from Canoe/Slam Sports: "...
Italy head coach Alberto Castagnetti is one of the leading opponents of the new suits, which were banned at the Italian championships last week.
"This is going down a very dangerous road," Castagnetti told the AP. "It removes the purely competitive aspect of the sport and puts outside factors into play. Swimming has always been based on ability. Now, there are other aspects. It's like technological doping. It's not in the spirit of the sport."
The one world record set by a swimmer not wearing the LZR since mid-February was from Federica Pellegrini of Italy in the 400-metre freestyle at the European championships last month.
"It would be one thing if it was Michael Phelps setting all these records, but a lot of them have come from fifth-and sixth-ranked swimmers," Castagnetti said. ..." [Link]
What makes it fascinating is that an Italian coach is acknowledging Michael Phelps is the best and can't be beaten. Also, this Italian coach has seemingly coined the term "Technological Doping," a term Salon used with attribution.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
WCSN has the rights to 2008 FINA Short Course Swimming World Championships., a meet that is being held in Manchester, England from April 9th -13th. WCSN is providing daily news and photos and some free videos too. If you want to watch the races like I do,
WCSN is streaming the event FREE! [Link]
Sunday, April 06, 2008
Jay Leno did something really stupid to one of his guests last week: Ryan Phillipe, was on his show promoting a movie that he was starring in called "Stop Loss." Phillipe plays a gay character in the movie and Leno requested that he "show his gayest look for the camera." Here is a link with more details: [Link]
Blogger Joel didn't like that and here is a post by Joel explaining Jay Leno' personal apology over the phone to him regarding his stupid patronizing joke: [Link]
I took the picture to the right of Blogger Joel as he "surveyed his realm" at the Belmont Plaza before the 200SCM Butterfly. He swam it faster than I did the 200 free - but I'm not jealous. Really. >.<
Attention USA Swimming or WMG: DO NOT PULL THIS VIDEO! If you do, you will only alienate us again and I hope you have learned something over the Floswimming fiasco.
SwimNetwork has not made any video available thus far of the Columbus Grand Prix available so I am posting this Michael Phelps 400 IM here. Mega thanks go out to swimmingismylife
over at You Tube.
There is a 'plugin' for the Firefox browser called "Download helper." With it you can download videos from You tube; or other sites that contain video, directly to your hard drive and view at your leisure. I am bringing this up because I have a bad feeling that when I wake up tomorrow this video will be gone. Hence, get the 'plugin' and use it for those videos you would like study so as to make you a better swimmer.
Saturday, April 05, 2008
See Tara Kirk set a new American record at the Encore Swim. I am so stoked that I am able to post this. I think Swim Network has the potential to be a great friend to swimming if they maintain this openness.
Note: if you use Blogger like I do, you have to manually tweak the HTML to make the movie fit. I had to adjust the width and height settings down by 20% or so to: height="328" width="415"
What is troubling me is that it does not embed a video controller along with it like You Tube does. None the less, beggars can't be choosers but I am stoked they are adopting a more open policy towards the swim community at large.
Here is Natalie Coughlin delivering a workout via the iTrain H2o player. The actual workout itself is an hour long and this You Tube is just a two minute video. If you own the iTrain H2o player, you can download her workouts at iTrain.com
Note how strong and relaxed Coughlin's kick is; so much power with so little effort. Also, note the "S-curve" on her backstroke pull; very symmetrical.
Great premise, beautiful lighting and color tinting, the compositing of the sharks is wonderful yet at the end when he dives off the blocks, we don't get to see him enter the water. Arrrgh!
HOWEVER, this is the making of the commercial so we get to see it from behind the scenes. ;-)
"I left just about everything I had in the pool for that race. I'm pretty happy with it. It could've been a little faster, but I'll take that for right now. And having those three races in 45 minutes was tough." The Detroit News: [Link]
Terry Laughlin sent me his thoughts regarding the post I made about the new 'Arena Powerskin R-Evolution ' speedsuit
Here is a link to the orignal blog post: [Link]
Terry responds: "I get the Science of Sports newsletter and followed a link from it to your blog. This topic is of significant interest to me as well. One question that Jonathan and Ross raise that I do not hear from others that often is, if the drag reduction potential from a suit is that significant, how many more significant opportunities for drag reduction from biomechanical improvements are being overlooked. Given that the suits are most likely to have their greatest impact on reducing friction drag which is the least significant of the three forms of drag, how much more could swimmers and coaches be doing to reduce, say, wave drag, which is the most impactful form of drag and which the suit is not likely to impact at all? I suppose Alfio and friends could contribute something meaningful to documenting what technique adjustments do impact that and how much. But of course, who would pay the millions for that sort on non-commercial research.
In any case, I enjoyed reading. Thanks." Here is a link to the Total Immersion website: [Link]
It is accurate to say that Terry Laughlin has had a big impact on swimming and I am very flattered that he wrote me. I may not swim well, and I may not swim fast, but it is a real joy for me when I get letters or comments from giants in the field such as Terry Laughlin, Glenn Mills, Erik Hochstein, masters swimmers, bloggers, friends or the Olympians who post anonymously and either call me out or correct me.
The above photo is Team Arena which I found on the Arena website: [Link]
I thought 'Swim Network' was going to post videos of the 'Columbus Grand Prix' but I am not seeing any posted at their site?
I saw at Lane 9 News that Natalie Coughlin didn't make the A-final due to being a bit groggy and by subsequently placing 9th in a time of 57.14. Tyr swimmer, Amanda Weir, swam a 55.33 to win "A" final but in the "B" final Natalie swam a 53.40 to break the pool record. This "B" swim has been the most impressive swim of the weekend for me. A break down of all the swims at Lane 9 News but you probably all ready knew that: [Link]
Friday, April 04, 2008
I originally found this at NotCot.org with the original post located at the PomPomist: [Link]
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Here is another Speedo Lazr article from STUFF.co.nz: [Link]
Simon Cowley, to undergo corrective surgery - From livenews.com.au: "... Controversial swimmer Nick D'Arcy will not particiapte an Australian Olympic Team Orientation Camp as the fallout from his alleged assault of fellow swimmer Simon Cowley at a Sydney nightclub.
D'Arcy was charged with assault following his alleged involvement in a pub brawl that left Cowley nursing multiple facial fractures, and will miss the camp to be held later this month. ...
D'Arcy has spoken of his "deep regret" over his involvement in the incident and the serious injuries suffered by Cowley, who is due to have surgery tomorrow. ..."
Doctors are waiting for the swelling to subside before performing corrective surgery for numerous facial injuries, including a fractured jaw and broken nose. ..." [Link]
My take: Cowley will probably have scars and perhaps permanent damage to his eye socket as a result of this beating but at least charges have been filed against D'Arcy who goes to court on April 21st. I found NO reference to Simon Cowley being charged, just D'Arcy. Hence, let's see what sort of defense D'Arcy puts up.
But you know what really "blows" for Australia? Some of their best swimmers witnessed this and now they will have to explain to the public, their sponsors and to the police what they were doing when this was all going down and they will do so under oath.
I can only cheer for the Australian women's team now. I can't even cheer for Grant Hackett after he meekly defended D'Arcy. Now I hope Larsen Jensen, Eric Vendt and even Park Tae-Hwan hand him his ass.
Next, Olympic great, Kieren Perkins said the The Age.Com.Au: "... Dual Olympic gold medallist Kieren Perkins said swimmer Nick D'Arcy had failed as a role model and should be banned from competing at the Beijing Games. ... I really can't see how we could possibly take somebody in that scenario onto an Olympic team," the 34-year-old told ABC radio.
"It is a group of people that are representing our country at the highest international level.
"Yes, we're sports people. Yes, we want to win. Yes, we want to see that we're the best in the world - but at what price? ..." [Link]