ST. LOUIS, July 2. ON June 28, the United States Masters Swimming (USMS) Rules Committee, chaired by Leo Letendre, approved a change in the backstroke rules.
The new rule now permits the movement of toes and feet above the surface of the water after the start signal has beens given. A swsimmer's toes, however, may not be brought over the lip of the gutter.
The new rule effectively allows a change from the current practice only in flat-walled pools and pools with the water level below the gutter.
The revised backstroke start rule (USMS 101.1.2B), which was changed to bring it into alignment with the FINA and USA Swimming rule, is effective retroactively to June 1, 2002. The corresponding USA Swimming rule also became effective on June 1.
Questions can be directed to Leo Letendre, USMS Rules Chairman, via e-mail: Rules@usms.org