Swimming...what's up with that?  

by Pool Builders on 08-22-2008 in Articles

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Ok, so swimming is just wrapping up at the summer Olympics, a glorious and unforgettable one for Michael Phelps...so I've been told about 15 million times in the past week. I see Phelps break Spitz' record for golds in an Olympics, 8 is now the new Mark (sorry Spitz), but it all gets me thinking about the sport of swimming and the Olympics and what's up with that? First of all, the only sport you could possibly win 8 golds in is swimming...but should that be true? When I was younger I raced my buddies in the lake/pool to see who was the fastest swimmer. I think we all swam as hard as we could and then whoever touched the wall first, won. I'm pretty sure I never said "Bud, let's see who is the fastest at the butterfly" or "Cart, I bet I can beat you at the backstroke".

At some point in the past people came up with different strokes for swimming, that's great! Go for it! But then somebody actually got these strokes pushed into a competition...and then into the Olympics! At this point it became not who is the fastest swimmer, but who is the fastest swimmer swimming a stroke that is not the fastest way to get from point A to point B in the water. Ridiculous! But it makes me wonder, why did the great swimming minds stop there? Why not see who can swim the farther/fastest all under the water, or maybe a stroke where you can't use your arms at all, just kick? Sounds dumb, but no dumber than any other great strokes competed in the Olympics. Why don't they swim the side stroke at the Olympics? Was that not cool enough?? "Yeah, we'll let the breast stroke in...uh, side stroke, nope that ones no good".

If that wasn't enough, they do these "other" strokes at different distances and in relays too! No wonder they win so many fricking medals! I'm surprised someone doesn't win more really...

I think track and field should expand running too, so that someone can win 8 golds there too. I'm going to suggest a race where everyone runs backwards, and another where they run sideways. Then we can also add in one where they run with their arms straight down at their sides..."LeRoy Walters is really running fast Jim, he looks unbeatable today, arms are perfectly straight down at his sides, look at that form!!"..."Oh no, looks like he bent his elbow slightly there, if the race officials catch that, he'll be DQ'd."

I think the sport of swimming is great, don't get me wrong, those Olympic competitors are great athletes and I don't deny that at all. But I've got to believe the reason it transformed into what it is (described above) is because it is made up of a bunch of athletes that just weren't good enough or tough enough for other sports...so they swam. So no wonder there are a bunch of different strokes and races, swimmers are sympathetic people. "Oh poor Johnny sorry you couldn't make the football team, try the swim team!"..."You're not quite fast enough at the freestyle, well try the butterfly...no not that either...maybe the backstroke"

I'll write in 2012 when the 200 Dogpaddle relay makes it's debut...it's coming!!

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