Posting about Triathletes and Swimming

The following is a very interesting and timely article that was posted on the Southern California Aquatics blog last month. It discusses the importance of swimming training for triathletes, especially in light of some recent incidents. The takeaway is that triathletes need to become better swimmers for their own well-being and safety. Masters Swimming can help, but we all need to reach out to our triathlon friends and encourage them to workout with an adult aquatics program.

Here is the article...

Triathletes should be certified by the USMS or USA Swimming!

Triathlete death rates during the swim portion surpass those of marathon runners!

60% of triathletes are terrible swimmers. Most need fins and lessons.

My informal statistic reminds me of an eBay joke I once heard: 50% of the the junk on eBay is crap and the other 50% is fake crap!

I don't say that lightly: Their death rates during the swim portion of the triathlon are twice that of marathon runners.

In just three weeks or so we see these news stories:
August 2nd: Reuters: The chief executive officer of Deutsche Telekom Asia, Calvin Lee Wee Sing, died on Sunday after he got into difficulty during the swimming leg of the annual Singapore triathlon.

August 10:
(UPI) OSHKOSH, Wis., Aug. 10 -- Police in Winnebago County, Wis., say a 43-year-old woman died while competing in the swim portion of the Oshkosh Triathlon.

July 18:
Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal: In the past six weeks, a 54-year-old woman and - last Sunday - a 33-year-old man died during the swim portion of area triathlons, despite near-immediate efforts to rescue them...
Now, is this a red flag or what? From The Independent:
"... Now a study has revealed that the risk of dying in a triathlon, though low, is nearly double the risk of dying in a marathon. A study presented to the American College of Cardiology Conference showed there were 14 deaths among almost one million competitors, a rate of 1.5 per 100,000. A further four deaths occurred among non-officially recognised events.

If I want to swim next year in the Pier to Pier race from Hermosa to Manhattan Beach, I have to swim a 500-yard test without a wetsuit for a L.A. County lifeguard to validate that I am qualified to swim with the other 900-racers in the event.

500-yards is probably the average swim distance for a triathlon and if triathletes are dying at such a rate why can't the USTS hold a triathlete to the same standard that the L.A. County Lifeguards do? No one has ever died during the Pier-to-Pier event and it is a 2-mile swim, not a 500-meter warm-up.

The USAT and USMS co-marketing efforts are not enough, insurance companies should mandate that the USMS and/or USA Swimming certify triathletes as knowing how to swim before they race.

This certification can be accomplished by the triathlete competing in a sanction USMS/USA Swimming event and producing the results of their meet as a passport for competing in a triathlon.

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?