The Week That Was: Toronto Steps In To Host Para Swimming Champs

Photo Courtesy: Luc Percival

This week would be Para Swimming Championship host Mexico City was rocked with a devastating earthquake, forcing the IPC to postpone the event for the first time in it’s history. Read about the IPC’s decision and all of the biggest stories of the week in The Week That Was.

The Week That Was #5 –  Ledecky And Snyder Named To SI Fittest Athletes List

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Photo Courtesy: SIPA USA

Sports Illustrated compiled a list of the 50 most fit men and women in the world of sports, and two swimmers landed themselves on the list. Olympian Katie Ledecky and Paralympian Brad Snyder came in at third and 31st respectively. The list was compiled by looking at factors including speed, endurance, and performances in the previous 12 months. Ledecky was only behind track star Allyson Felix and gymnast Simone Biles across all women, with the Stanford sophomore continuing to be the most dominant female swimmer in the world. Snyder, the current world record holder in the 100 free for fully blind swimmers, was the only Paralympian to make the list. You can see the full list of female athletes here and male athletes here.

The Week That Was #4 – Caeleb Dressel Impresses at All-Florida Invite

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Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Florida star and recent USA Swimming Athlete of the Year Caeleb Dressel got his senior year off to a fast start this week competing at the All-Florida Invite. Swimming at home in Gainesville, the USA Swimming star posted two fast times in the 50 free, winning the individual event in 19.21 and leading off the relay in a lightning fast 19.10. He would go on to win the 100 free in 44.59 and lead off the relay in 44.04 on the second day of the meet. Dressel is coming off an incredibly successful summer that included seven gold medals at the 2017 FINA World Championships. This was the swimmer’s first race since that competition came to a close in Budapest earlier this summer. The Florida men won the invite with 1227.5 points, more than 200 points ahead of runner-up Florida State. You can see full results from the meet here.

The Week That Was #3 – New England Puts Limits On 10 & Under Tech Suits

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Photo Courtesy: Taylor Brien

New England Swimming announced this week that 10-and-under swimmers will have restrictions on what technical suits they are allowed to wear at meets. In a document that is posted on the LSC’s official website, it states that “Swimmers 10 years old and younger may not compete in a ‘technical suit’ in a New England Swimming, Inc. sanctioned or approved competition.” The documents also includes a list of permissible and impermissible suits. Any suit containing kinetic tape, bonded seams or meshed seams will fall under the category of tech suit and will be prohibited. This new policy comes in the middle of a wider effort by USA Swimming to determine whether tech suits should be legal for lower age groups. You can view the full document from New England swimming on their website.

The Week That Was #2 – Lochte Rule Modifications Approved By USA Swimming

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Photo Courtesy: Kara Sekenski

The rules clarification around the controversial “Lochte Rule” has been officially adopted by USA Swimming as of September 21. The changes to the rule had previously been reported on way back in July following the FINA Swimming Technical Congress in Budapest, however the rules were not officially adopted until this week. Previously, at no point during the freestyle leg of an IM race could a swimmer be on their back. The new changes to the rules make it clear that a swimmer can be on their back during the turn but must return to the breast before any stroke or kick occurs. You can read the full rules change from USA Swimming here.

The Week That Was #1 – IPC Postpones Para Swimming Champs, Toronto Steps In

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Photo Courtesy: John Vetterli

With barely over one week left before the start of the 2017 World Para Swimming Championships an earthquake rocked host city Mexico City and forced the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) to postpone the event. More than 200 people died as a result of the 7.1 magnitude quake, with the country left reeling on the heels of another powerful earthquake in the southern region of the country that happened just days before. This is the first time in the history of the championships that the event has been postponed. Just days after it was announced the Championships would be postponed, Toronto stepped in by planning the Canadian Open at the Toronto PanAm Sports Centre. Planned for October 2-4, the meet will give para swimmers a chance to compete in the same time window that the Para Swimming Champs would have occurred. Swimming Australia has confirmed their participation in the meet with more countries likely to follow. You can view the full IPC statement on the postponement here.

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Author: James Sica

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James Sica is the Men and Women's Assistant Coach at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He has been an assistant coach at CMU in Pittsburgh, PA (2015-2017), a volunteer assistant coach with the Harvard women’s program (2014-2015) and an assistant with the Ithaca College men's program (2012-2014).

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