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July 2012



This month we introduce a new column: Club and Coach Services Director Bill Brenner will answer any questions you may have about managing or growing your USMS club. See below for details.

Swimming for Life!
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Club and Coach Services
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Need help getting your club up and running?
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Club and Coach Services Director: Bill Brenner


Northwest, AZ, NM, South Central, Dixie: 

Susan Ingraham.

Midwest, East: 
Mel Goldstein
Free marketing materials are available for USMS programs. Caps, stickers, brochures, etc. 

Small club? Just starting out? Don't have an advertising budget? We have created free templates that you can use to promote your program, your swim meets and your open water events.

Questions from Coaches
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Bill Brenner, Club and Coach Services Director
How does the 30-day trial membership work?
Bill Brenner
Questions about growing your club, managing club business, or becoming a better coach? Club and Coach Services Director Bill Brenner can answer your questions. Email

Q: Can new swimmers try out my club without registering for USMS? I thought all swimmers in the water had to be USMS members to be protected under the USMS insurance policy.

A: USMS insurance allows for a 30-day trial of a Masters program. Potential members who want to swim with your club can swim for 30 days before they have to register with USMS (this is separate from any club fees you may charge).

To protect your swimmers' USMS insurance coverage, you MUST have the potential member fill out and sign a USMS application for membership. Write "30-DAY TRIAL" across the top of the application and keep it during the trial period. If an incident occurs, the trial swimmer is NOT covered by USMS insurance, but all of your registered swimmers are covered.
2012 Marriott USMS Summer Nationals
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More than 1,250 swimmers compete in Omaha, Neb.
Omaha Masters Swimmers and Coaches from all over the country converged at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha, Neb. to compete in the second largest USMS Summer Nationals in history. 40 USMS and 24 World records were broken during the four-day event. A full list of these records can be found here. Results from your team and others can be found by visiting the Meet Results Page on

In addition to the results on, our partner Active Network has also created an iPhone and iPad app called Meet Mobile. This app includes heat sheets, psych sheets and real-time results.
Get Found
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Is your program info current on "Places to Swim?"
Zone Map The "Places to Swim" tool at is one of the most comprehensive databases of all U.S. Masters Swimming programs and pools. We rely on our swimmers and coaches around the country to update the information. Please check your program's listing and update it today!

Ab-Busting Drill
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Stu Kahn, Davis Aquatic Masters Head Coach
Do your swimmers hate sit-ups?
Stu Kahn

Looking for a good aquatic abdominal exercise? Have your swimmers grab their fins and pull buoys and give this kicking drill a try.


It's a basic streamline drill on your back, but by planking the body, tightening the arms and nearly locking the knees, all the focus rests on the core and abdominal muscles.


Have your swimmers experiment with buoy placement closer to the knees to keep them straighter. The kick should be tight and fast. For additional abdominal tightness, have them submerge their elbows slightly.


If they feel this exercise in the lower back or quads more than the abs, they're probably bending their knees too much.


For immediate feedback, have them relax one arm and place their fingertips on their abs. If they're doing it right-they'll feel it!


Here's a video:
Ab Buster
What Rule is THAT?!
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Kathy Casey, USMS Rules Chair
The coaches ask and the Rules Chair answers
Cathy Kasey


Note: The FINA Masters World Swimming Championships and the Olympic Trials have caused confusion about which rules are followed at USMS meets.



Q: Can we get our own counters or do the officials have to count for distance events, and does the count have to be in descending order?


A: Yes, you can get your own counter for USMS meets (102.10.6A). No, the count does not have to be in descending order; it can be in either ascending or descending order (102.10.6D). FINA rules only allow officials (inspectors of turns) to count and only for the 800 and 1500 freestyles (USMS allows counters for individual events 16 lengths or more, 102.10.6A). FINA rules allow officials to count only from the turn end of the pool (not from the side of the pool as allowed by USMS 102.10.6C), and only in descending order (FINA rule SW 2.6.3), so that's what you saw at the FINA Masters World Swimming Championships, the Olympic Trials, and will see at the Olympics but not at USMS meets.


Q: We can't put our toes above the surface of the water for backstroke starts, can we?


A: Yes, you can as you saw at the Olympic Trials, at the FINA Masters World Swimming Championships, at USMS long course nationals in Omaha, and will see at the Olympics; all of which had the high, "FINA" walls and, therefore, no gutters. The rule does not say the toes must be placed below the surface of the water. The rule says the toes cannot be placed above the lip of the gutter or bent over the lip of the gutter (101.1.2B). If there's no gutter, as is the case with the high walls at FINA Masters Worlds, the Olympic Trials, the Olympics, and the USMS long course nationals in Omaha, there's no lip of a gutter to place the toes above or bend the toes over. So, if no gutter lip, the toes can be placed above the surface of the water.


Q: It's illegal to wear a watch in pool competition, right?

A: No, a watch is illegal only if it's used as a pacing device (102.12.1E and 102.13.9), and the official has to observe it being used as a pacing device.


For any questions about rules contact Kathy Casey, USMS Rules Chair   


Certification Opportunities
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Become a certified USMS coach
USMS Certification Pin

The USMS Coaches Committee and Club and Coach Services have developed new curricula for Level 1 and Level 2 USMS Masters Coach Certification. The new courses are taught in classroom settings throughout the country. Participants receive a "Certificate of Participation" once they finish the class. If participants wish to become certified, they must join ASCA and deliver to ASCA the completed tests from the coursework and the application for USMS/ASCA Masters Coach Certification. ASCA will grade the tests, process the applications and deliver the certificates.   


Level I & II

Aug 25 Minneapolis, Minn. Register now 

Sept. 7 ASCA World Clinic, Las Vegas, Nev. Register now
Sept. 12 USAS Convention, Greensboro, N.C. Register now

Sept. 29 Mountain View, Calif. Register now  

Sept. 30 Davis, Calif. Register now  

Oct. 13 Cranford, N.J. Register now

Nov. 3 Nashville, Tenn. 


Level III (Level II a prerequisite) 

Sept. 12 USAS Convention, Greensboro, N.C. Register now   

Nov. 4 Nashville, Tenn. 


(Contact Bill Brenner for more information)

Masters Coaching Opportunities
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Looking for a coach? Looking for a team?
Coaching on Deck
USMS maintains a discussion forum on to match up coaches and teams. The Coaching Forum has several current threads posted; check back for frequently for updates. And remember, if you are hired in a position or you hire a coach, please update your posting to save time for others who follow you to this helpful forum.
Please Support USMS Partners!
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Affinity Partners
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           Exercise medicine          Chammyz

Media Partners
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Bearcat Masters   Swimming World   

About Us
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About U.S. Masters Swimming
U.S. Masters SwimmingU.S. Masters Swimming, founded in 1970, is a membership-operated national governing body that promotes health, wellness, fitness and competition for adults through swimming. It does so by partnering with more than 1,500 adult swim programs across the country; promoting information via the bimonthly member magazine, SWIMMER, monthly e-newsletters, STREAMLINES, and website,; and by sanctioning and promoting pool, open water and virtual events and competitions. More than 55,000 adults are registered members of U.S. Masters Swimming. 

About STREAMLINES for Coaches
Coach talking U.S. Masters Swimming encourages all U.S. Masters Swimming coaches to subscribe to STREAMLINES for Coaches. However if you would rather not receive this update, please do not click the unsubscribe button, as that will remove you from all other USMS National Office mailings. Rather, please click on the "Update Profile/Email Address" link at the bottom of this email. Here you can select to discontinue your STREAMLINES for Coaches service or sign up for the monthly members' newsletter, STREAMLINES, and/or STREAMLINES for Volunteers, a bimonthly publication.