Thursday, November 20, 2014

Michael Phelps is not dating a transgender but if he was would it matter? NO!

If you just read the Daily Mail headline it insinuates Phelps is dating a transgendered woman. The women is very much genetically female but was born with genitalia of a man later removed when she was a young adult. Being born with both genitalia is called: hermaphroditism.

The "racy" headline from the Daily Mail reads: "Michael Phelps' self-proclaimed 'girlfriend', 41, reveals she was born a male as she describes her 'amazing intimacy' with Olympic swimmer."

But one should ask, what if Miss Chandler was a transgender how would the swimming community act?

From the Daily Mail:

As she explains in a Facebook post, 'I was never a man, never lived as a man. No one can say they knew me as a man or produce a photo of me as a man.'

She then adds, 'There are people that remember me as an androgynous child at times because of what was forced upon me.'

She is also revealing how in love she is with Phelps, and claims the two clicked after meeting on Tinder.

'Spending time with him was like a teenage love affair,' she says.

'I have never felt so comfortable and accepted in every way as I did with him.' 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Great News: USA Swimming signs deal with GoSwim for technique videos

Congratulaions Glenn Mills and his fantastic team.


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USAS Shield"... USA Swimming announced today that GoSwim, the sport’s leading provider of educational video content, is the official technique video supplier of USA Swimming.

Designed to make it easy and affordable for coaches to show proper technique videos to swimmers, GoSwim’s subscription platform and new mobile application give coaches a simple, inexpensive way to teach swim technique.

“GoSwim offers a deep library of technical videos that benefit swimmers of all ages and abilities,” said Frank Busch, National Team Director at USA Swimming. “Coaches can easily access the footage on or off deck and USA Swimming staff can use the videos for education in presentations to enhance our competitive success.” ...'

See the rest of the press release here: [Link]

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Outside Magazine has two articles up regarding USA Swimming's child abuse problems and they are summarily quite chilling!

Anna Strzempko raped at 13-years-old by her Coach recalled this chilling horror for Outside Magazine...
From the Outside Magazine article "Unprotected":

“‘Don’t cry Anna. Didn’t you say I am like a father to you? (smack, blood in my ear) You have all those boyfriends anyways. I want to keep you focused on swimming.’ I am thirteen and in a private discussion with my coach that was set up after nationals. Ripping pain, grunts that sound like the monster in a horror movie, blood, my hair pulled out lying on the ground, the smell of fear. It smells like fresh chlorine and metal.”

To throw more attention onto this subject they added a second article which is a rogue's gallery of USA Swimming's worst criminals:
"... From Outside Magazine: "...Of the 108 people on USA Swimming’s list of individuals banned from the sport, at least 90 were banned for sexual misconduct. Of those, more than 50 have been arrested, charged, or convicted in connection with those crimes. As we reported in our December 2014 feature, the majority of the offenders were allowed to continue coaching for years, despite their misconduct—until 2010, when media exposure forced USA Swimming’s hand and the organization began publishing a list of banned coaches. Over the past three months, Outside examined public records, court documents, and media accounts to shine a light on what 26 of these individuals did. Here’s what we found. ..."
 When you read both of these articles, ask yourself what kind of non-profit organization allows an executive director (Chuck Wielgus) to take home nearly $1-million in salary per year and get away with such failures and coverups?

USA Swimming take note: "Australian Olympic team members to undergo mandatory child abuse checks"

Instead of waiting for teens or young adults to report incidents of child abuse, the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) is being proactive and will begin asking members of their Olympic team if sexual abuse of any sort has taken place. 

Though not a complete fix at least the AOC is interviewing potential victims in a safe environment thus adding an additional layer of protection. 
From Inside the Games but please take not of the quote in bold face type: 
The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) today revealed that all coaches, staff and officials will undergo a mandatory Working with Children Check before they can become a member of the nation's team for Rio 2016. 
"We have been working with the US Olympic Committee and British Olympic Association who have vigorous policies in regard to the safety of children," Coates said.

"We will be introducing similar policies in our team agreement to protect all members of our team.

"It has been suggested to me that this is a bigger problem in American sport than doping. It is our job to show leadership."

"Just like what we are trying in our fight against doping in sport, I want us to try and set the highest standard possible here, in protecting athletes, it's my job."

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Swim Coach Jack Nelson who Diana Nyad accused of repeatedly molesting her as a teen has died!

The New Times flowery obit on Swim Coach Jack Nelson - at least they had the courage to include Diana Nyad's molestation accusation she made in the New Yorker so as to sincerely qualify all of his so called good deeds. [Link]

Monday, November 10, 2014

Swim Meet: 5-year-old swimmer places second against 8-year-olds in a 25-meter sprint - Just glorious!

How old were you when you learned butterfly? This race is so charming and a lot of fun to watch. His arms are so small he has to do multiple dolphin kicks before each stroke. And at the end of the race he climbs out of the pool like Tarzan.

Sunday, November 09, 2014

I never knew that Speedo had a resort swimwear line - Rachael Finch models some of it.

Summer is just a month away in Australia so Speedo is gearing up to deliver some serious product.

Australian beauty pageant titleholder and TV news reporter, Rachael Finch, models some speedo resort wear.

I had no idea Speedo made resort wear. The article is more about the model than the clothes but Speedo has included some unique styles

Loving the over-sized glasses. I wonder if Speedo is selling those too?


Russian News Ageny: FINA cancels Russian swim team's results over Yefimova's disqualification.

Yuliya Andreyevna Yefimova, also romanized Efimova as seen in the video above, " a Russian swimmer from Taganrog. Efimova competed for Russia at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Olympics. In London she won the bronze medal in the 200 metres Breaststroke...." [Link]

From the Russian News Agency TASS
"...GENEVA, November 5. /TASS/. The International Swimming Federation (FINA) has cancelled all results of the Russian national swimming team from October 31, 2013 following the disqualification of Russian athlete Yulia Yefimova, the FINA press service said on Wednesday. ..."


Saturday, November 08, 2014

Australia: "Senior Olympic swim team official Greg Hodge’s coaching membership is under review amid allegations of inappropriate behavior towards a junior female swimmer."

The Telegraph Newspaper reported that Coach Greg Hodge is in some sincere trouble for kissing a 15-year-girl on the deck at a meet. Yeah, pretty stupid and overt even if there was no sexual intent at all.
"... One of the main incidents under scrutiny took place at a state championship in Canberra in September 2011. Greg Hodge, a one-time Olympic swim official and former WAIS high performance director, shocked onlookers when he kissed a teenage girl on the cheek on pool deck.

Coach Brett Tongue confirmed he complained about the incident and coach Michael Shaw confirmed it was formally reported to Swimming WA.

Despite the incident, the former Australian swim team, NSW Institute of Sport and WAIS manager kept his job and has been a coach at the West Coast swim club.

Mr Shaw said Swimming Western Australia was informed after it emerged Mr Hodge had kissed the schoolgirl.

The previous Swimming Australia President, Dave Urqhart, and CEO Kevin Neil said they were never made aware or received a complaint about Mr Hodge kissing the girl from Swimming Western Australia...."

Sounds like Swimming Australia does not have a very effective process for handling complaints or some senior members are playing the "I know nothing" card so as to avoid competence reviews or criticisms?

USA Swimming officials tried that too and it did not work to well.

In business and such they have a term called "best practices" a term that originated in a 2001 book called "Good to Great" by Jim Collins.

Though I still endorse "no one-on-one meetings" between a  coach and a swimmer and that a parent or an adult be present during meetings as a best practice, I also endorse an additional principle that would reduce the potential for sexually abusive relationships dramatically.

Statistically this best practice would reduce sexual abuse incidents by at least 96%. It's simple and would also opens up the male dominated industry to women in an important way.

Girls should be coached by women only and boys be coached by men only. I picked the number 96%-reduction presuming that 96%-of the population is "straight" and the remaining population is gay or bi-sexual. It seems that most abuse incidents are heterosexual in nature, thus separating genders would decimate abuse complaints and give the sport more credibility.

Indiana State University plans to add a women’s swim team as an intercollegiate sport to bolster Title IX participation!

Why is Title IX important?  The Nike commercial above says it all not to mentioned that the United States womens swim team was nothing short of elite as a result.

Indiana State University plans to add women’s swim team as an intercollegiate sport to bolster Title IX participation and now only is that good for the girls, it means the community is getting an epic aquatics center.
Form WTHI Channel 10
ISU currently has eight women’s teams and six men’s teams.

“It’s not how many sports you have its how many participants you have, and any school that has the sport of football usually has more women’s sports so they can balance it out,” said Prettyman.

However, ISU’s arena pool is not certified for competition, they’re turning towards the future Aquatic Center to make competition possible.

“I’ve met with Mr. Prettyman on a couple of occasions, and then presented that information to our school board. The school board will be the ones making the final decision but at this point they’ve given the green light to continue conversations,” said Danny Tanoos, Superintendent of Vigo County Schools.


Friday, November 07, 2014

Diana Nyad`s 48-Hour Charity Swim `Was a Bear' - Interview what it was like for her.

The women is tough. Very few of her accomplishments have been duplicated by men. I said it once, I'll say it again, she swims like a boss!

Her journalistic stuff is quite amazing too.

Thursday, November 06, 2014

USA Swimming sends out a carefully crafted letter warning members not to read Outside Mag which blames USA Swimming's handling of pedophile coaches!

USA Swimming President sent out a carefully crafted letter warning coaches, moms, and dads that Outside Magazine was about to do a 13-page scathing report on the organizations handling of the sexual abuse issues within the sport. The letter is posted at the bottom of this blog post.
Fact: USA Swimming knew of the article and would not meet with the Outside magazine writer to explain their position - Rumor has it on Twitter that the writer was told Chuck Wielgus was too busy dealing with Michael Phelps' DUI to respond. If the subject of a scathing child abuse report about the organization is of lesser significance than a star swimmer's DUI arrest then an organization definitely has its priorities wrong.

Fact: USA Swimming knew about these child sex abuse issues long before 2010. Evidence is there to prove it.

Here is an email from David Berkoff who is a current USA Swimming board member and even he sent Mike Saltzstein, a former vice President at USA Swimming, a note mentioning his frustrations that nothing was being done:

Fact: Here is a letter written by a victim in 2003 warning of a terrible pedophile named Andrew King who was tormenting swimmers. Instead of calling the police or contacting the victim, Executive Director, Chuck Wielgus decided to cover it up and keep the email as secret as possible. As a result Coach King was subsequently able to molest dozens of kids before his capture and sentencing in 2010. He was sentenced to 40-years due to the severity.

With that in mind note the comment Wielgus makes in point number-four regarding the abuse claim by the author: "This matter should be kept confidential by you and us..." Right there is the smoking gun. They knew circa 2003 at the very latest and consciously decided to hide it from view.

Fact: We have two executives claiming to know quite well that serial abuse was rampant in the sport and the policy was to hide it, cover it up and do nothing.

When confronted with all this evidence and then asked to respond, this is what the executive Director of USA Swimming stated on the news program 20/20:

If you watched the video Wielgus mentions that he does not want to blame the victims but his very next sentence he goes on to blame the victims. Amazingly enough, even after "apologizing this year" he has refused to resign and allow the organization to reboot.

The letter below sent on behalf of USA Swimming President Jim Sheehan constantly refers to a turning point for the organization in 2010. This infers an acknowledgement that that the organization failed and has changed but has it really?

Let's define what a true turning point is. When you apologize, you admit guilt, you take responsibility to make it right and this includes settling claims and doing your best to fix the past.

Fact: USA Swimming not only refused to take responsibility for the past but they even successfully lobbied Governor Jerry Brown in California from signing a bill that would have allowed abuse victims the right to sue their abusers via an extension to the statute of limitations law. After the veto it was only then that Wielgus apologized ensuring no responsibility would be or could be ever taken.

USA Swimming lobbied hard against this bill along with the Catholic church - Governor Brown, a former Jesuit priest sided with both organizations rather than the victims. However, unlike USA Swimming, the Catholic church has settled a good deal of claims whereas there is no evidence that USA Swimming settled any.
Here is what the bill was all about: 
To condense the purpose of SB 131 into one sentence: "... This legislation would provide a one-year revival window from 2014-14 for certain victims who were previously barred [due to a legislative error] the right to seek justice for the abuse they suffered as children. ..." 
Several journalistic organizations, and non-profits have criticized, written about, or produced negative media about USA Swimming's child protection policies and Chuck Wielgus himself. ABC News 20/20 did a special, ESPN's Between the lines as well. The Womens Sports Foundation circulated a petition which led  Executive Director Chuck Wielgus to remove his name from being inducted to the International Swimming Hall of Fame.  The New York Times, the San Jose Mercury News, Associated Press, The Orange County Register, and now Outside Magazine have shouted as loud as they can that this organization has issues and needs new leadership. Even Congressman Miller of California sent a stern letter to the FBI calling for the organization to be investigated and the FBI responded with an aggressive warning to USA Swimming demanding they get their act together .

How many reputable organizations have to expose USA Swimming till the members and coaches within the organization realize the governing body needs a thorough reboot and new management? Even the government is NOT happy with them yet the USOC and the members refuse to see what a dangerous manager Chuck Wielgus is.

I look forward to the Outside magazine and I hope it wakes up an apathetic and slumbering membership.

The excuses in the Sheehan letter below remind me of a cult leader telling it's flock to pay no attention to the truth.

To all USA Swimming Clubs:
Sent on Behalf of Jim Sheehan, USA Swimming President

The December issue of Outside magazine features a 13-page story titled “Unprotected,” describing USA Swimming’s handling of abuse cases. USA Swimming officials and Safe Sport facts were represented in the article, but the focus has a decidedly negative slant as the main sources are an abuse victim and her attorney.

We expect the story to reach subscribers this week and the issue will be on newsstands starting November 11, for one month. Outside has a subscriber base of approximately 690,000.

Anna Strzempko’s story reveals the dynamics by which child sexual abuse in sport can occur and the devastation it can cause. One child hurt is one too many.

We now understand those issues much clearer and have learned to better address the problem of abuse. We have come a long way since 2010.

Despite the length of the in-depth article, the full story of USA Swimming and its Safe Sport program was not told. With a heavy concentration on the past, readers were not given an accurate picture of the organization’s current state.

This was a missed opportunity to share how USA Swimming members and their parents now have more resources than ever to prevent or stop an abusive situation.

We started a new chapter in 2010 with the creation of Safe Sport and have worked tirelessly to minimize the risk that any child could be victimized. Safe Sport is now an essential part of our responsibility to our 400,000 members, with the continued introduction of new programming, educational tools and outreach efforts. USA Swimming has extended protections for reporters of abuse and formed a victim’s assistance fund.

The process works successfully to address and sanction violations consistently. Survivors not included in the story can share how our organization played a key role in helping them through a difficult time in their lives.

We are proud of our Safe Sport program and are committed to safety of our membership. The ‘bad guys’ are those who gain the trust of our children and manipulate relationships to abuse them. We must work collectively to keep our children safe from harm.

There was a mention late in the Outside article of an FBI meeting with USA Swimming. When representatives met informally during an industry conference late this summer, it was to discuss how the two organizations can collaborate to develop educational and other programming to prevent child exploitation. The conversation was unequivocally unrelated to the handling of abuse cases and that topic was not mentioned in the meeting.

Attached is information for your use regarding the Outside story, USA Swimming’s Safe Sport program, a December 2013 memo about USA Swimming’s insurance program and a planned letter to the editor of Outside. For more,

I wanted you have this in advance of the article becoming public and I hope that you find it helpful. Please let me know if you have any questions.


Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Michael Phelps' trial for DUI postponed until a week before Christmas

USA Today is reporting Phelps trial for DUI has been postponed till December 19th. The brief article has a spectacular photo gallery up as well of Michel Phelps throughout the years:

From USA Today:  
"...Phelps had a blood-alcohol content of .14, nearly twice the legal limit, when he was arrested Sept. 30 in Baltimore. He faces five charges, three relating to driving while impaired. ..." 

NBC Sports: Conor Dwyer focused on Doha after losing Michael Phelps, Yannick Agnel

Apparently Bob Bowman's North Baltimore Athletic Club is a one trick pony!

When the best racehorse pulls up lame (read as Michael Phelps) the other horses move onto green pastures or in Conor Dwyer's case, bluer waters.
From NBC News
Conor Dwyer temporarily moved across the country after losing his top training partners, Michael Phelps and Yannick Agnel, in a matter of weeks.

Dwyer left his Baltimore base for the West Coast to train for his next major meet, the World Short Course Championships in Doha from Dec. 3-7.


Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Are Triathletes Really Dying of Heart Attacks During the Swim Portion of the Race? - Probably Not!

Our very excellent friend Dia sent us this.

Last week the sport of triathlon suffered another fatality during the swim portion of the Beach2Battleship race. 68-year-old Roger Ackerman was suddenly in distress. He alerted staff but soon after medical workers began administering CPR. Though Mr. Ackerman had a history of heart issues he had seemingly defeated those issues by becoming an endurance athlete who had run more than twenty, 100-mile races and was medically cleared to do the race.

When terrible events like this happen the primary suspect is a heart attack but why are fit people having heart attacks in an event they are seemingly well practiced for?

Brian Alexander has an article over at Outside Magazine exploring a phenomena called Swimmer Induce Pulmonary Edema (SIPE) which is when internal fluid enters the lungs:
There have been a number of SIPE reports over the past decade that back up MacIver’s and Bates’ suggestion. For example, during a training exercise, young Israeli special forces soldiers swam 2.4 kilometers. Of 30 soldiers who started the swim, 8 showed signs of fluid in the lungs, edema.

Unfortunately, nobody is sure just why this happens.
How frequent in the triathlon population is this problem?

From Hindawi Pulmonary Journal
"... Exercise in water places a unique set of stresses on the respiratory system. Immersion pulmonary edema with breath-hold diving, SCUBA diving, and cold water exercise has been well documented in the literature [39–41]. In a survey of 460 active SCUBA divers, 1.1% had a history consistent with the development of immersion pulmonary edema [42].  
A survey of triathletes from the group USA Triathlon revealed that 1.4% of the members had symptoms suggestive of pulmonary edema after completing an event that contained a swimming component... [43] 
I am going to finish off with immediate symtoms of SIPE which are listed in the Outside Magazine article:
"...MacIver listed warning signs of edema, like frothy or pink sputum and excessive breathlessness out of proportion with the normal heavy breathing of intense exercise. ..."
A good athlete knows when to quit, be a good athlete. Be prepared and injury is never fun death is forever.

Monday, November 03, 2014

FINA defends their decision to award its highest honor to Vladimir Putin and their reasons are sound!

Awards are obviously acknowledgements for good work, appreciated support, or as a mark of recognition. Russia has gone out of it's way to support swimming by hosting FINA grand prix meets as well as masters swimming and other aquatics related events. They have done so as a nation and not a governing body.

John Leonard, leader of the American Swim Coaches Association, has once again reared his "ugly American" head by voicing in a stern letter to FINA that Russia should not receive any sort of award from the organization due to the numerous doping cases Russia has seen in recent years. On face value that argument is silly for every country has doping issues and the buck starts and stops with the athletes, the governing bodies, and finally the international agencies. It does not stop at the President or dictator's desk.

Leonard is  guy that has been known to utter the words "communist doping" anytime a communist country sets a world record or handily beats an American. One example is his attack on Chinese swimmer Ye Shiwen in the 400 IM in London. Though declared a clean swimmer by the FINA and the IOC Leonard summarily suggested to an international audience that she doped:
“... The one thing I will say is that history in our sport will tell you that every time we see something, and I will put quotation marks around this, 'unbelievable’, history shows us that it turns out later on there was doping involved. That last 100m was reminiscent of some old East German swimmers, for people who have been around a while. It was reminiscent of 400m individual medley by a young Irish woman in Atlanta. ..."

He forgets that the "Michael Jordan of doping", was an American named Lance Armstrong who bamboozled several doping agencies for nearly a decade protected by those all around him and subsequently acquired tremendous wealth.

From the review of the Book Cycling of Lies, The Fall of Lance Armstrong, by Juliet Macur as reviewed by John Pantalone.
"...Macur’s reporting indicts the athletes but also their managers, doctors, investors and others with a huge financial stake in looking the other way or helping the athletes to cheat. She also indicts American sports journalists because they cried foul when French journalists insisted that no one could win the Tour de France in the manner that Armstrong kept winning it. The American reporters had a financial stake in crowning a “regular” guy who overcame cancer and inspired millions with his success. From Nike to Sports Illustrated, corporate outfits knew a good moneymaker when they saw Lance Armstrong in the same way that Major League Baseball lauded fraudulent home run hitters for restoring the game’s popularity in the 1990s. Pretend not to see the cheating. Collect the money. Deal with the mess later. ..." 
Saint Augustine once said: Pirates and Emperors are really the same thing

There are cheaters in every sport, in every game, ranging from politics to war. Of course there are those that cheat in marriage and those that lie on their resumé and those that lie to their boss. Whether Leonard likes it or not, emperors, presidents and dictators are generally the worst people among us.

They order executions, bombings, beheadings, drone strikes, and invasions. Living in a dysfunctional world with dysfunctional rulers means you protest the bad and validate the good. Putin swimming fly in some Siberian lake, holding FINA Grand Prix meets and subsidizing swimmers is something to be validated not denied.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

The 1968 Belmont Plaza Olympic Trials Pool is going to be razed to make way for a newer facility!

Mark Spitz qualified for his first Olympics in that pool. The pool was also featured in a Da Vinci Code movie with Tom Hanks pretending to be a water polo player. The Grunions Swim Club held their annual short meters championships in that pool and I set a couple personal bests there.

I feel proud to have swam in that pool. I look forward to the new one!
From The Press Telegram
The Belmont Pool design centers around a 50-meter by 25-yards indoor pool with a movable floor allowing shallow water for public recreational needs and deep water for competitions.

It also has the diving well after lobbying by aquatics groups eager to carry on the tradition of the Belmont Pool, the site of the 1968 and 1976 U.S. Olympic trials.

The plan additionally features a 50-meter by 25-yard outdoor pool, a 900-square-foot teaching and therapy pool, a general-use whirlpool and a smaller diver whirlpool.

Dino D’Emilia, project manager for the new pool complex, said he expects heavy demolition to take about a month-and-a-half and begin in mid-November.

The finished pool could open sometime in 2017. A temporary, outdoor pool has been constructed in the interim.


Gisele Bündchen Goes Surfing For Chanel No. 5 - She is objectified a bit but it's a womens' ad not a mans'

A sexy shot and of Gisele Bündchen heading out to what may be Sunset point in Santa Monica/Pacific Palisades (not sure).

The "number-5" on the back of the suit is a callout to the perfume Chanel #5.  The wetsuit is obviously tailored and she is definitely not hard to look at while wearing it.

I am really please how Bündchen is branding herself as of late. (Kick boxing, surfing, and being a successful woman with kids and a dedicated husband.)

She is, or at one time was the highest paid model on earth, I like aspirational myths & heroes and she is one of them. Though no one is perfect, we should all aspire to become the impossible albeit intellectually, physically, and spiritually.  But for those who can't, such as the disabled or otherwise, just showing up and trying hard is even more inspiring.
Director Baz Luhrmann (the man behind films like Moulin Rouge!, Romeo + Juliet, and Strictly Ballroom), however, rethinks the attainability of the modern woman’s Holy Trinity (career, family, love) in the latest campaign for Chanel No. 5. The teaser with lyrics by Lo-Fang, out today, illustrates the “paradox” of the house’s woman: “One moment she’s on the beach and the next she’s in a frock