National Team - Portland

Summer in Arizona can be a time to endure the heat that comes with living in a desert state.

Or it can be an excuse to get out of town and enjoy the nice weather somewhere else. Oh yeah, there can be swimming involved too!

Long Course Nationals will be in Portland, OR in August. This will be a good place to be, forty-one swimmers from AZ will make the trip there and enjoy cooler weather and fast times in the pool. My guess is that the team will also enjoy the good food and drink that Portland is known for too.

Just think, you could have gone too...

Here is the Arizona National Team for Portland:

Doug P Adamavich
Christie Altman
Robert C Balling
Sharon G Billeter
Brigid J Bunch
Susan E Dawson-Cook
Anna R DeLozier
Kelsey A Dickson
Kurt F Dickson
Peter A Eisenklam
Susan B Foster
Vern Fuller
Mikey G Girard
F H Ted Haartz
Ted W Hammond
Noriko Inada
Al Jaegers
Katryn S James
Kohei Kawamoto
Nancy Kinney
Evie S Lynch
Bobbi Malone
Frank McIntyre
Joanne C Menard
Thomas A Monroe Sr.
Amy B Mullaney
Christine M Nelson
Sam W Perry
Bridget A Pranke
Maureen T Rankin
Tom D Rigley
Barry Roth
Caron L Shake
Scott D Shake
Lou Silverstein
Jason M Sixkiller
Laura K Smith
Paul L Smith
Jeffrey S Utsch
Whitney M Warman
Phillip Whitten

Wish our team well as they take on the best in Portland this August!


Speed and Age

Not only is Paul Smith a fast swimmer, he has an uncanny ability to find good articles regarding different aspects of swimming. He recently came across a very interesting read on age, speed, endurance etc. etc.:

Speed and age - The bad news is that speed declines with age; the good news is that you can arrest, even reverse, this degenerative process.
"Fast-twitch muscle fiber, that most precious of commodities for speed and power, displays a much more marked decline than slow-twitch fibre as we age. Speedsters, it appears, are not as blessed as endurance athletes in the ageing-and-performance stakes. The latter can expect to maintain their slow twitch fibres and even increase them – by as much as 20% with the right training – as they ripen. They can also hold on to nearly all their aerobic capacity until late into their fifth decade at least. If only it were so for their sprinting counterparts, whose fast-twitch fibre can decline by as much as 30% between the ages of 20 and 80. "
Good information for everybody, check out the whole thing.


NCAA Coaches Roundtable

Paul Smith forwarded this link for a VERY good roundtable discussion with Mike Chasson, Frank Busch, Dave Marsh, Eddie Reese, Jack Bauerle and Richard Quick.

Check it out.


Interview with ASU Coach Chasson

Here is a link to a recent interview with ASU Swimming Coach Mike Chasson. He talks about the recent reinstatement of the Men's team for 2008-2009 and how other teams can take steps to ensure their survival. Check it out, good stuff in this interview.

BTW, this is the 350th post for the blog!


National Team Gear

Let's say you are going to Portland for Long Course Nationals.

Or you are going to La Jolla for the open water swim.

Or you went to Austin for Short Course Nationals.

You can show your team spirit and let everybody know you are a masters swimmer by wearing one of our National Team t-shirts. The last printing of these shirts will be August 1st, so if you want one you will need to order before then.

You can order this and other items by going here. By the way, our team swim caps are now available! My suggestion is that you order other items in addition to a swim cap to save on shipping.

We are one of the top masters teams in the country. The last few Nationals have demonstrated that our swimmers are among the best and that we have a strong team. Let the world know you are a part of this fast and fun group by wearing team gear. You will also help us publicize masters swimming to the world.

Now it's on to Portland...


SWEAT Articles by Masters Coaches

In the latest issue of SWEAT, two masters swimming coaches give their tips on training for the swim leg of the triathlon. Simon Percy of Sun Devil Masters and Anne Wilson of Camelback Coaching share some valuable advice for you triathletes out there. If you have that issue, the articles are on pages 16-17.


Rowley - Swimming Across the Sound

56-year-old local Mesa resident, bone cancer survivor, and amputee Mark Rowley will swim 16 miles from Long Island, New York to Bridgeport, Connecticut on Saturday, August 2, 2008 to raise money and awareness for cancer patients. An arduous open water swim for anyone, Rowley faces an additional obstacle with the loss his left leg mid-thigh, but don't expect that to keep him down. He jokes, "My biggest handicap is my age, not the loss of my leg!"

Rowley's swim is part of an annual charity race called Swim Across the Sound. Rowley will be the only amputee to attempt this 16-mile open water swim.

Good luck to Mark, you are an inspiration!


ASU Men's Swimming Reinstated for 2008-2009

Great news for Men's Swimming everywhere.

The ASU Men's Swimming Team has been reinstated for next season!

Here is the announcement:
TEMPE, Ariz. --- Arizona State University Vice President for Athletics Lisa Love announced Tuesday, July 15, 2008 that the athletic department is fully reinstating the sport of varsity men's swimming, effective immediately, due to financial support from various donors across the globe. The sport of wrestling had been reinstated on May 23, 2008.

"It is comforting to know that we have had two separate sports communities step up and raise enough funds to support these programs," says Love. "This is both remarkable and special in that, for the second time, passionate alumni are giving back to protect the future of an ASU varsity sport that not only served them well, but, as of today, will continue to serve future athletes."

ASU had announced on May 13, 2008 that it was discontinuing the sport of men's swimming, along with wrestling and men's tennis, due to the rising cost of operating a 22-sport varsity program. Men's diving was never affected by the decision. It was determined at that time that sponsoring a 20-sport program would better fit ASU's athletic financial profile. Love indicated at the time that if the either of the sports' communities were able to raise enough financial support the sport could be reinstated. Wrestling was reinstated due to financial support from local civic leadership. Swimming has now followed the suit and will continue to be a varsity sport at Arizona State in 2008-09.

Love said that fundraising for the sport of men's swimming will be an ongoing process. The objective is not just to sponsor men's swimming as a varsity sport, but to position the sport as one of the top programs in the country.

The Sun Devil men's swimming team is a member of the Pacific-10 Conference.
This is good news but should be tempered by this fact, the reinstatement only covers one year. To save ASU Men's Swimming for the long-haul, they still need to raise additional funds. So if you can, consider donating to this worthy cause and help save our sport for future generations of swimmers.

Read more about this here and here.

Great work everybody but there is still more work ahead of us.


Swim - Sun - Fun T-shirts

We have a new item available through the online store.

Its the "Swim - Sun - Fun!" t-shirt! This is a great way to promote masters swimming, which we are all a part of.

Swim is what we do.

Sun is what we have a lot of in Arizona.

Fun is what we have when we get together.

I highly encourage everybody who is a masters swimmer to get one of these and wear it. Wearing our colors is a great way to build awareness in masters swimming.

Think about it, how many t-shirts do you see out there for musicians, companies, and products? Add Arizona Masters to your collection of t-shirts today!

Hint, if you are swimming at Nationals or La Jolla this would be a great way to show team unity...


About: Sports Nutrition

Here is a good link that was forwarded to me regarding sports nutrition. The articles in this section of About have been reviewed by medical professionals so they are worth reading. Take a look, the information may prove helpful in you training.


Gor blimey!

Big news out of the UK, former Brophy Coach and US Team Director Dennis Pursley was hired by British Swimming in preparation for the London 2012 Olympic Games. This has generated considerable buzz in Great Britain as their teams seeks to maximize their results for their home Olympics.

Read more about it here and here.

Best of luck to Coach Pursley with his new challenge across the Pond.


You Need Speed!

(An) interesting article published in the current issue of ASCA by Scott Volkers an elite swim coach from Brisbane, Australia. I like what he has to say about Speed…listen up all you triathletes, open water swimmers and distance swimmers who do not believe that speed work is important…you're wrong! A sample of the article:
“Train like you race. If someone was to ask me what happens in Queensland compared to a lot of places, why do we go well? Across the board I think we train like we race. I have been pushing that for about 16 years in Queensland, about speed. Speed is important. Speed is the most important thing now. If you do not have speed you are in the wrong event. Look at Grant Hackett. He goes 49 (long course meters) for a 100 freestyle and he is going to swim 1500. If your best is 53, you are a little bit behind on the first lap. Then he can’t hang with any of the toughest guys around”.
In the same vein, there is a quote from an associate who says of adult/masters swimmers and how they train and why so many don’t see continued improvement “When they swim slow they swim to fast, when they swim fast they swim to slow”.

Or as (my college coach) the Haucker would say "In order to swim fast you need to swim fast."


New Use for Old Suits

If you swim, you probably go through a couple of suits a year. Yes, even the new Speedo Endurance ones wear out after a while! So what do you do when they are worn-out.

In the past, you probably just threw them away.

Now, you can put your old, worn-out, faded suit to good use.

Here is an article that Paul Smith brought to my attention from the USMS discussion board:

Hello All, I work with a great group of ladies making quilts for those that are less fortunate. We make the quilts all year round and then donate them to the local shelters and directly to those that find themselves living on the streets when the weather turns cold. We use almost all donated materials to make the quilts. We try to use nylon type materials, not only nylon but light weight materials, because it tends to dry much faster than other materials. We are always in dire need of materials. We have received a lot of old suits from my daughter's swim team and have found it very usefull. Her coach suggested that I try posting on the internet to see if others would be interested in helping our cause, so here it is! We cut the suits into smaller pieces we can use so the condition of the suits does not matter at all(we have received some that were just pieces). I was wondering if any of you would be interested in donating your old suits to a worthwhile cause? It is also a great way to recycle the old suits and keep them out of the landfills! If you are interested you can post here or email us at Quilts4homeless@yahoo.com

God Bless,
So if you have an old suit (or two), send Jennifer an email and get the process started.


Party Time

Mark your calendars because Mitzi Gruender is hosting a party for masters swimmers at her house on Saturday July 26th. This will be a great chance to meet with your fellow swimmers outside of the pool and enjoy each other's company. The party will go on from 5-10pm and kids are welcome! If you have any questions, give her a call at 480-998-0321. See you there!


Blue Seventy Sensation

Some of you may have heard about the incredible performance Blue Seventy wetsuits have given them during open water swims and triathlons.

They also have a FINA-approved suit for pool meets...

Glenn Mills wrote about his experience with his suit at a recent meet in Maryland where he set a new World Record in the 200M Breaststroke (SCM). Very interesting observations and thoughts on this topic.


How to Become Strong

Paul Smith sent me an article from Dr. Mirkin that may interest some of you. It concerns strength training and how to increase it. The concepts are simple but need to be repeated. Here is the main point of the article:
Exercise does not make you stronger. If it did, marathon runners would have the largest muscles of all athletes. The single stimulus to make muscles larger and stronger is to stretch them while they contract.
Adding weight and stretching are two keys that will make you stronger and will enhance your performance in the pool. For evidence of this, read the previous posting about Dara Torres and see the results.


Masters Clinic with Dara Torres?

Toyota is sponsoring a masters swim clinic featuring Dara Torres. She is in Omaha right now competing for a spot on the 2008 Olympic Team but after Bejing, she will be available to share some of her training secrets.

Imagine having Dara Torres giving you tips on your stroke...

Yeah, very cool!

Of course, everybody else in USMS knows about this offer now. Rob Copeland (USMS President) sent out an email last week on this subject. Only a selected few clubs will be able to host one of these events. So the competition will be tough.

The good news is we have a large LMSC with many excellent swimmers and coaches. If we mobilize our members, we stand a good chance of hosting one of these clinics. What everybody needs to do is go here and fill-out the form. Enter "ARIZ" for the club since all of the teams within our LMSC compete as one club. If we get one of the clinics, we will work with our coaches to find the best venue for this event.

So enter your information today and let's get in the running for this event. It will be a great opportunity to learn from a top masters swimmer who remains at the top of her game at 41!

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