• At the Norwegian short course championships today, Aleksander Hetland and Alexander Dale Oen met in the 50 breaststroke, Hetland having won bronze in the Dubai 2010 World short course championships, and Dale Oen being the European champion in the 100 long course breaststroke. During prelims Hetland was faster, also leading the first half of the final, but then Dale Oen came back strong, tying Hetland with a 27.61. Coaches comment that it wasn’t a good race for neither of them, as they are a bit worn out, but that it means a lot to have them competing against each other on home turf. Source: Aftenposten.

  • Frédérick Bousquet and Alain Bernard posted the first sub-22 second 50 freestyles of the year today at the Championnats de France de Natatation, Bousquet swimming 21.82 and Bernard 21.98. Camille Muffat set a second-best this year in the 100 free, clocking 53.97 where Heemskerk posted 53.70 earlier this month. Denmark’s Rikke Møller Pedersen won the 50 breaststroke in 31.85, and Hugues Duboscq the 200 breast in 2:11.99. Sources: Swimmingworld Magazine and SwimNews.com.

  • Athletes are increasingly using ice baths to stimulate recovery, as seen in this ClubWolverine video with Mike Bottom about swimming recovery. A more high-tech alternative is the cryosauna, where liquid nitrogen is turned into freezing gas, plunging the temperature below -200 degrees Fahrenheit (-128 degrees Celcius), for instance used by ‘Mad Scientist’ Alberto Salazar.

    The body believes that it is dying and rushes blood to protect its vital organs. Two minutes later, when the athlete emerges from the container, the concentrated and enriched blood rushes back through the body, providing an instant cleanse and relief.

    Source The Wall Street Journal via Neatorama.

  • Arnold Lande, a retired American heart and lung surgeon, has patented a scuba suit that would allow a human to breathe “liquid air”, a special solution that has been highly enriched with oxygen molecules. “The first trick you would have to learn is overcoming the gag reflex,” explains Lande, a 79-year-old inventor from St Louis, Missouri. “But once that oxygenated liquid is inside your lungs it would feel just like breathing air.”

    Sounds like The Abyss to me …

    Source The Independent via Swimming is Easy.

  • Eleuthera, Bahamas is named after the Greek word for “freedom,” Eleuthera is 110 miles long and just a mile at its widest. To the east is the occasionally wild Atlantic, to the west a shallow, usually calm Caribbean Sea. The waters on both sides are ideal for swimming. Unless, of course, you don’t know how to swim, which is the case for 80 percent of the Eleuthera islanders. Taught to fear the ocean, even some of the fishermen who make their living off the sea can only dog paddle. A pair of young American women are trying to erase that aquatic inability, founding Swim to Empower, an organization that teaches people of all ages to swim. Read this interesting article about the efforts, and watch out for the documentary Free Swim.

  • A good read here 0n diversityinaquatics.com

    Water is a magnet for all children.  It is fun.  It is soothing.  Water is the ultimate, non-threatening hug.  As an adult, what is your reaction when you sink into a hot bath?  Or sip a cool glass of water on a hot day?   Aaaaaahhhhhhh.  Exactly.  Now magnify that attraction and that reaction by 100 and you’ll know exactly what an autistic child feels like when they are immersed in water.

  • 18-year-old Yannick Agnel demolished the French record in 400 freestyle, at the Championnat de France today, swimming 3:43.85 where his French record from the European Championships where he beat Biedermann last summer was 3:46.17. Rouault followed him up until the last 100, from when Agnel took more than 3 seconds out of him, winning silver with the time of 3:47.42. Danish swimmer Mads Glæsner was third with 3:51.88.

    In the women’s 800 freestyle, Danish European champion Lotte Friis won gold with 8:24.52, not so far off her 8:23.27 European championships winning time from Budapest last summer. And in the 200 breaststroke, also Danish European bronze winner Rikke Møller Pedersen won gold with 1:07.52, compared to a 1:07.36 in Budapest 2010.

    Source: SwimNews.com

  • Hideaki Akaiwa

    The Los Angeles Times brings this incredible story about 43-year-old Hideaki Akaiwa, who couldn’t wait for rescue workers when large parts of his hometown of Ishinomaki were turned into a lake by the tsunami, but donned a wetsuit and went looking for his wife himself. He managed to find their house in all the debris, saved her and then later also his mother, who then had been stuck on the second floor of a flooded house for four days. Lugging a fanny pack including green tea, water, a flashlight, work gloves, a Swiss Army-style knife and a change of clothes, he still searches for survivors. Via neatorama.com.

  • According to The Independent, phones are unwelcome at the London 2012 Olympics, “as they may disturb the action, along with banners, horn, whistles, drums, rattles and musical instruments”. The ban is mentioned as security measures produced by the Games organisers, included in a “non-exhaustive” list of banned and restricted items in the terms and conditions of booking Olympic tickets, including picnics, liquids in containers bigger than 100ml, camera tripods, umbrellas and flags of countries not involved in the Games. The rules also aim to safeguard the official sponsrs of the Games from “objects bearing trademarks or other kinds of promotional signs or message (such as hats, T-shirts, bags, etc) which Locog (the London 2012 organisers) believes are for promotional purposes”. Via goldmedalmel.typepad.com.

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