US Masters Swimming
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MARCH 2014

March comes in like a lion, and goes out like a ... sea lion. 'Cause it's been training all month. See ya 'round the water!

Swimming for Life,
Your Friends at U.S. Masters Swimming
Comfort Drills

Try these drills to increase your comfort level in the water

Water is not our natural environment. Some swimmers are better at adapting to the aquatic world than others. When you don't feel comfortable, your body will never be able to realize its full potential in any environment, much less in the pool.


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The Monster Under the Starting Block
Coach Chris Campbell shares how he's faced the abyss

Winston Churchill famously described depression as a big black dog that follows the sufferer around. Truman Capote contrasted the onset of the blues with an attack of the reds, and Kat Kinsman described her anxiety as a feral cat that just randomly jumps up and starts clawing away. In my case, I'd wrestled with crises of confidence my entire life, but it seemed normal enough. And I found certain things that would keep the wolves at bay. First and foremost among these was my swimming. 


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Open Water National Championships
Registration now open for several open water events
Open Water

The open water national championship schedule is about to heat up! Registration is now open for several open water national championship races, with more on the way soon.


Registration is still open for the 2014 USMS 2.4-Mile Open Water National Championship. Hosted by the Chattanooga Open Water Swimmers and Outdoor Chattanooga, the event will be held in Chattanooga in the Tennessee River on May 17. 


Registration opens this week for the 2014 USMS 1-Mile Open Water National Championship hosted by Davis Aquatic Masters. The event will be held on June 7 in Lake Berryessa in Napa, Calif.


On August 3, join us for the  5K Open Water National Championship, part of the Cascade Lakes Swim Series and Festival. Hosted by Central Oregon Masters Aquatics, this event will be held in Elk Lake in Bend, Ore. Registration to open soon.


August 16 brings the 2-mile Cable Swim Open Water National Championship hosted by Adirondack Masters in Mirror Lake in Lake Placid, N.Y. 


One week later, Lake George will be the site of the 10K Open Water National Championship hosted by Green Leaf Racing in Hague, N.Y. Registration opening soon.

Open Water Safety Webinars
Sign up today for an open water safety webinar

The USMS Open Water Committee is pleased to invite open water officials and open water event hosts to attend a live Open Water Safety Webinar presented by Jim Wheeler, Chair of the Open Water Safety Subcommittee. Jim has more than 30 years experience in aquatic risk management, safety, and training for venues; including waterfronts, beaches, pools, and water parks. Jim is the president of Total Aquatic Management, an aquatic consulting and training company. He frequently gives safety workshops during the USMS Annual Meeting. The offered webinar includes up-to-date information on open water safety and USMS safety regulations.


You can now sign up for one of two open water webinar events to be held:

  • March 16, 2014, 7:30-8:30 PM EDT
  • April 13, 2014, 7:30-8:30 PM EDT

Register today to select your preferred date.


Screensharing will be used so you can follow the accompanying PowerPoint presentation. You'll also be able to send questions to Jim during the webinar through the provided Chat Room capability. One of the webinars will be recorded and posted on should you need to review the materials.


If you register for a webinar, you will receive call-in information via email on the Thursday before your scheduled webinar. Contact OW Committee Chair Lynn Hazlewood with questions.

Bidding Open for 2016 Long Distance National Championships 

Apply to make your event a national championship 

Want to host a postal or open water national championship long distance event in 2016? The bidding process is open to events that have run successfully for three years in a row before bidding. Hosting a national championship provides lots of national exposure, which can help your event grow substantially. Bidding information is available on the Long Distance Championship page at Bids are due July 15. Selection will be based on the overall suitability of the bid received, and in the case of open water, the committee will also be considering the area in which the event is to be held, safety, and the annual event schedule as a whole. For more information and detailed instructions, check out the Championship Bid Information page. Applications for both postal and open water events can be completed online. Apply today!

Award Nominations Due
Nominate a deserving volunteer today!
All Star

USMS presents a number of awards annually to members who have excelled in various areas. The details and recipients of each type of award may be found on our Awards page. Send in your nominations today!

  • Capt. Ransom J. Arthur M.D. Award (Due March 15)
  • Speedo/USMS Coach of the Year Award
  • Dorothy Donnelly Service Award 
  • Kerry O'Brien Coaching Award 
  • June Krauser Communications Award
  • And more!
See all the award categories on the Awards page. Nominations for all awards (except the RJA Award) are due July 1
USMS Officer Elections Coming Soon
Want to volunteer with USMS?

U.S. Masters Swimming will hold elections for all officers (president, vice president of administration, vice president of community services, vice president of local operations, vice president of programs, secretary, and treasurer) at its Annual Meeting of the House of Delegates, Sept. 16-21, 2014 during the United States Aquatic Sports Convention in Jacksonville, Fla. 


The nomination deadline is April 30, 2014. Nomination packets may be obtained from the Elections page of the USMS website or by contacting Elections Chair Cheryl Gettelfinger.


We're looking for energetic volunteers with a desire to help lead U.S. Masters Swimming. If you're interested in leadership and service at our highest level, or you know someone who would be willing to serve, please let us know!
Adding a Vanity ID or Coach Affiliation
USMS added two new membership products in 2014
In 2014, USMS added Vanity IDs and Recognized Coach status to the registration system. If you did not purchase either of these items at the time of renewal, but would like to do so now, you still can. Just go to the membership update page to begin. 

Becoming a recognized Masters coach lends credibility to your business and also gives you access to special sponsor discounts. As a Recognized Coach, you'll also be eligible for hospitality at Spring and Summer Nationals, select volunteer opportunities, stipends for writing technique articles and workouts, and a slew of other exclusive benefits. 

Your permanent ID is the last five characters of your annual registration number. These characters uniquely identify you as a USMS member, so why not have some fun with them? For a one-time fee of $50, you can get your own, customized string of identifying characters--think of it as a personalized license plate for Masters swimmers. Get your own special ID and see how creative you can get with designating who you are to the Masters world!
Let the Watch Count
Special Advertorial by the Professionals at Garmin

Swimmers of all levels benefit from knowing critical data for improving performance, such as distance swum, time elapsed, and distance per stroke. But keeping track of your stats during a swim can get tiring. Enter the swim watch to help free you from the drudgery of counting laps, logging times, and calculating other statistics so you can focus on your technique.


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USMS Seeks Software/Web Developer
Have you got the right stuff?
USMS is seeking a full time software developer to assist with our web operations in Sarasota, Fla. Job responsibilities will include: 
  • Working with our volunteers to develop requirements for new web applications and updates to existing offerings.
  • Developing and coding new applications, and maintaining/updating existing code on to support members and volunteers throughout the country.
  • Working with the team to develop new mobile applications for the organization.
  • Supporting onsite staff with computer and software installation and configuration, and maintaining office network infrastructure.

All web development is done using PHP/MySQL/JavaScript, and mobile applications will be developed using cross-platform tools. For more information about the position or to apply, check out the complete listing.

This Aquatic Life
Ole Larson makes a splash
Ever feel like you just can't get our of bed and to the pool to train or compete? It happens to us all from time to time, but don't blame it on getting older. Ole Larson certainly doesn't. In January, the 92-year-old swimmer from Boone, N.C., participated in the 40th annual Sunbelt meet at Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center in Charlotte, N.C. The six-time national record holder swam six events at the meet, making it look easy and proving that age really is just a number. The desire to compete and stay active, relevant, and healthy is a mindset many Masters swimmers embrace, and we love that about this sport and community. We salute you, Ole, for your long-term dedication to swimming and look forward to watching you compete at the next meet! (Photo by Peter H. Bick)

Have a great image and a story to go with it? Sent it to

Seen on our Facebook Page
Facebook 100In early February, New Zealand actor and writer Oscar Kightley--who had never learned to swim as a child--took the plunge in a big way by taking swimming lessons and completing 25 meters on live television. It was a big step for the new swimmer who had once been terrified of the water. As we launch our April Adult-Learn-to-Swim Month initiative next month, we would like to applaud Oscar for having the courage to draw attention to this important issue and for setting a good example for adults worldwide who can't currently swim. We hope they will be inspired to try as a result of Oscar and other new swimmers' efforts. Offering additional evidence that it's never to late to learn, Angela Bryant commented on our Facebook page that she learned how to swim as a goal for her 40th birthday. "I'm currently taking more lessons," she writes. "I love it." See other inspiring and encouraging comments posted to the story and join the conversation!
About U.S. Masters Swimming
U.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. Nearly 60,000 adults are registered members of U.S. Masters Swimming.
U.S. Masters Swimming encourages all USMS members to subscribe to STREAMLINES, a monthly publication. However, if you'd rather not receive this update, please do not click the "SafeUnsubscribe" link, as that will remove you from all other USMS National Office mailings. Rather, click on the "Update Profile/Email Address" link to manage your subscriptions to U.S. Masters Swimming electronic communications.
Spring Nationals Registration Now Open!
Don't miss the action!
Registration is now open for the 2014 Nationwide U.S. Masters Swimming Spring National Championship to be held at the George Haines International Swim Center in Santa Clara, Calif., May 1-4, 2014. Online entries are due by March 27 for this big and super fun SCY meet. Visit the national championships page for more information and to register today
1-Hour Swim Preliminary Results
Check out the standings!

The 2014 Speedo-USMS 1-Hour Postal National Championship event wrapped up this year on February 10. Typically, the event runs only through January 31, but because of severe weather during the month of January, the Long Distance Committee voted to extend the deadline 10 days to allow those affected a little more time to sneak in that 1-hour swim. Despite this extension and the weird weather that caused it, we had more than 2,400 individual participants who sent in their results for this, our largest postal event. Individual preliminary results have now been posted. Congratulations to all participants who made the effort to go the distance this year! Check out the results for men and women and please send any corrections to Mel Goldstein by March 10


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