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Happy holidays from U.S. Masters Swimming!

Swimming for Life,
Your Friends at U.S. Masters Swimming
The Wall

Coach Scott Bay offers a different approach to teaching the freestyle catch

Freestyle hip technique

No, you're not hitting it or pushing off of it. You're using it to teach your tactile and kinesthetic learners what a really good freestyle pull feels like.

 Continue reading >>> 
Finding the True Source of Your Pain

Chris Ritter explains that the site of pesky pain may not be the real problem

Shoulder Pain

If you've been swimming for any length of time, you've likely experienced some aches and pains. Whether it's while you're in the water or maybe a few hours after, most Masters swimmers will encounter some type of pain on occasion. Pain is often caused by weakness or imbalance somewhere in your body. Finding and resolving that weakness can improve your pain situation. 


Continue reading >>>

Registration Discounts Still Available

Spread the word: Swimmers who register before Jan. 1 get great deals from USMS sponsors

membership, join, renew, button

Pass it on. Members who renew their USMS memberships for 2015 prior to January 1 will receive valuable discount codes from our sponsors. It's easy to renew online and upon completion of the registration process, each member will be emailed valuable coupons for great gear and products from our sponsors.


Aqua Sphere - 20% off of entire order

blueseventy - 30% off any orders in the swim collection *

Colorado Time Systems - $125 off the Backstroke Start Device

FINIS - 25% off of entire order

Malibu C - 20% off of entire order**

P2Life - 25% off of entire order

Speedo - 30% off of entire order***

TRISWIM - 40% off of all TRISWIM, FOGGIES, TRISLIDE and DERMASPORT products - 15% off USMS merchandise & Sporti branded products ****

* Discount only applies to blueseventy swim collection

** Excludes SwimCare Wellness Shampoo and Conditioner in 8 oz. Tube

***Offer valid through 1/15/2015 11:59pm PST at or by calling 1-888-477-3336.  Customers will receive 30% off your order on Speedo merchandise, except as noted below, by adding the provided code at checkout. Offer excludes select Performance Suits, all LZR Racer suits, FS3 Goggles, Vanquisher Goggles, Speed Socket Goggles, Aqua V Silicone Swim Caps, Hydralign and Hydralign Jr. Center Snorkels, Bullet Head Snorkel, Teamster Backpacks and online gift certificates. This offer not valid on previous purchases and cannot be combined with any other offer. No Cash Value. Void where prohibited by law.

****Discount only applies to USMS and Sporti products. Free shipping on $49 and above.


The USMS Speedo 1-Hour ePostal is Coming!

Set aside some pool time and encourage your swimmers to participate

2015 1-Hour ePostal logo

Are you ready to test your mettle for an hour? Better get training, because the 2015 USMS Speedo 1-Hour ePostal National Championship is almost here!


Whether you're completing the 1-Hour ePostal for competition, fun, or fitness, all who wish to participate are welcome. The event runs from January 1 to January 31, 2015, and the objective is to swim as far as possible in 1 hour, in any pool 25 yards or longer. Record your splits and submit your results, just for fun, or so you can compare yourself to other swimmers around the country.


This year's 1-Hour is hosted by the Chicago Smelts and is a USMS-sanctioned event. All participants must be registered for 2015 with USMS (or the equivalent organization for non-U.S. swimmers). Foreign swimmers are not eligible for USMS records or All-American status. 

Coaches, why not set aside a couple of practice sessions to get your whole club involved? It's great for building camaraderie and provides a killer workout for participants. Lots more information is available online.
How to Access Your Club Roster
It's easy to do!
silver-keyboard.jpg, typing

Your club contact receives an email each time someone registers for your club, but sometimes you may want to view your entire club roster. Here's how to do it:

  • Go to
  • Click the Membership link at the very top of the page
  • Select Membership Directory from the left side of the page
  • Select your LMSC from the pull-down list and click the Submit & View Members button

Once you see the entire list, click the appropriate club or workout group link at the top and it will show just your members.


Emergency Rule Change: Breaststroke

Modification in timing of breaststroke kick effective now


FINA changed the breaststroke kick rule November 29, 2014, at an extraordinary Congress in Doha, Qatar. USA Swimming automatically adopted that rule change November 30, 2014. USMS automatically adopted the breaststroke kick rule change in accordance with USMS 601.4.7B as of December 2, 2014. The amendment to the USMS breaststroke kick rule 101.2.3 is effective immediately.


Following is the text of the amended breaststroke kick rule:


"101.2.3 Kick-After the start and after each turn, at any time prior to the first breaststroke kick, a single butterfly (dolphin) kick is permitted, following which, all movements of the legs shall be simultaneous and in the same horizontal plane without alternating movement.


The feet must be turned outwards during the propulsive part of the kick. Scissors, alternating movements, or downward butterfly (dolphin) kicks are not permitted except as provided herein. Breaking the surface of the water with the feet is allowed unless followed by a downward butterfly (dolphin) kick."


What this rule change means for swimmers and officials:

A visible separation of the hands initiating the arm pull is no longer required before the single butterfly (dolphin) kick that may be taken after the start and after each turn. A single butterfly (dolphin) kick is permitted at any time after the start or after pushing off the wall on each turn and before the first breaststroke kick.


For any questions contact Kathy Casey, Chair, USMS Rules Committee.


Year-End Giving: Swimming Saves Lives

Donate to the Swimming Saves Lives Foundation in 2015

Swimming Saves Lives Foundation Donate Button

Since its founding in 2012, U.S. Masters Swimming's charitable arm, the Swimming Saves Lives Foundation, has awarded more than $65,000 in grants to programs that will provide opportunities for thousands of adults to learn to swim. Past grant recipients have included:

  • Walnut Creek Masters, Walnut Creek, Calif.
  • Cannon Memorial YMCA, Kannapolis, N.C.
  • YMCA Central Virginia, Lynchburg, Va.
  • The Advancement Foundation, Vinton, Va.
  • Swim With Heart, Santa Monica, Calif.
  • 21st Century Swimming, Sarasota, Fla.
  • Stowe Masters, Stowe, Ver.
  • Martha's Vineyard Masters, Vineyard Haven, Mass.
  • Pittsfield Polar Bear Masters, Pittsfield, Mass.
  • Cambridge Masters Swim Club, Cambridge, Mass.
  • Richmond Swims, Richmond, Calif.

You can give the gift of swimming. Please consider a year-end donation to the Swimming Saves Lives Foundation. Access more information or to make a contribution online today. 


Major Changes to Open Water Rules

Summary of open water changes from Convention


Water Conditions for Open Water Events: Temperature and water quality guidelines are now in place for swimmer safety in open water swim events. (Article 302.2.2)


Drafting in Open Water Swim Events: In any swim in which individual escorts are required and motorized escorts are allowed, drafting of any kind is prohibited. (Articles 303.3.5 and 303.3.6)


Swimwear in Open Water Events: Body coverage of the swimsuit has been extended to more closely match FINA rules; see Article 303.7 for a complete description. Neoprene caps are not permitted when the water temperature exceeds 78 degrees Fahrenheit. Navigation devices and audio players are not permitted. (Article 303.7)


Independent Safety Monitors: An independent safety monitor is required at all USMS open water swims. (Article 308.3)


What Rule is THAT?!
Kathy Casey, USMS Rules Chair, answers your questions

The Coach Asks: We will be hosting a meet that encourages new membership in USMS. We offer some 25-yard individual events and 100-yard relays at the meet. We anticipate some one-event entrants. Can one-event entrants compete in those "nonconforming", 100-yard relays?


Answer: No, for two reasons:

  • First, one-event entrants are considered as unattached swimmers (201.1.3B) and are registered with the UC. UC members are prohibited from competing in relays (201.3.4).
  • Second, 202.1.1F(3) allows nonconforming events, such as 100-yard relays, that would typically be disqualified as described in 102.13 which also includes the relay rules in 101.7.3 (see 102.13.11), but it does not exclude relay disqualifications as described in 102.9 (relay entry rules). Since 102.9 is not excluded from the list of disqualifications for nonconforming events, any relay that competes with members who are UC (unattached) must be disqualified in all cases (102.9.1), and that includes nonconforming relays.

If a 100-yard relay includes swimmers who are UC (unattached), the relay would be disqualified.


All rule references are from the 2014 USMS Rule Book. For any questions about competition rules in Part 1, contact Kathy Casey, USMS Rules Chair.

Questions from Coaches
Bill Brenner, Education Director, answers your questions

Q: Will my program automatically be added to Places to Swim on the website when I register a new club?


A: No. The Places to Swim database is organized by facility and a request for each facility must be made by a club or facility contact. If your program uses multiple facilities, you'll want multiple entries.


To submit or modify a listing:

  • Go to the Places to Swim web page
  • Enter the city and state or zip code of your location
  • Add a new listing by clicking on the link under the map
  • Modify your listing by clicking on the link under your current information

Places to Swim is one of the most visited pages at Viewers looking for pools with Masters programs include:

  • New swimmers
  • Swimmers relocating to a new area
  • Swimmers looking for pool or club options
  • Traveling swimmers
  • Triathletes and open water enthusiasts
  • Adults interested in taking swimming lessons

Places to Swim should serve as a marketing tool for attracting new members to your pool and Masters program. Highlight your strengths and include the following information in your listing:

  • Location. Add the specific street address that viewers can input into their GPS devices.
  • Club name. List the club name registered with USMS.
  • Workout times. If times vary, refer to your program's website listed below.
  • Contact. Coach's name, credentials, phone number, and email address. Or, the pool contact information.
  • Website. If your program has a website, list it here for more information.
  • Miscellaneous info. This can include fee information, though I recommend referring to the website for your current fee structure. If you offer an adult learn-to-swim program, mention it here. Also, list the types of athletes your program welcomes.
    1. New swimmers (if you offer free trial memberships, list the information)
    2. Swimmers of all abilities
    3. Fitness swimmers
    4. Competitive swimmers
    5. Triathletes
    6. Open water swimmers
    7. Social group swimmers (list typical social activities)
    8. Visitors (include drop-in fee information and required USMS membership notice)

Below each listing is the date the information was added or last modified. I recommend updating the listing as soon as new information is available or every six months if the information is the same. Why update if there are no changes? You want the modification date to be relatively current so the viewer knows that the listing is more likely to be accurate. 


In the future, USMS will be adding more features to the Places to Swim webpage to provide enhanced information for our clubs, coaches, instructors, and new and current members.


Questions about growing your club, managing club business, or becoming a better coach? Education Director Bill Brenner has answers.

Want to read past questions? Then check out Bill Brenner's Questions from Coaches Blog, and see if he's already found solutions to your coaching quandaries. 
Coach Certification Schedule
Upcoming Coach Certification Classes

Level 1 and 2

Jan. 24, 2015 - Phoenix, Ariz. - Register online

Feb. 21, 2015 - Coeur d'Alene, Idaho - Register online

Mar. 7, 2015 - San Jose, Calif. - Register online

Mar. 28, 2015 - Dallas, Texas - Register online

Apr. 11, 2015 - Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.

Apr. 18, 2015 - Hartford, Conn.

May 2, 2015 - Las Vegas, Nev.

May 16, 2015 - Pittsburgh, Pa. 

May 30, 2015 - San Antonio, Texas

June 5, 2015 - Nashville, Tenn.

July 25, 2015 - Portland, Ore.

Aug. 22, 2015 - Raleigh, N.C.

Aug. 29, 2015 - Philadelphia, Pa.

Sept. 26, 2015 - Oklahoma City, Okla.

Sept. 30, 2015 - Kansas City, Kan. (at USAS convention)

Nov. 14, 2015 - Jackson, Miss.


Level 3 (Level 2 a prerequisite)   

Feb. 22, 2015 - Coeur d'Alene, Idaho - Register online

Sept. 19, 2015 - Chicago, Ill.

Sept. 30, 2015 - Kansas City, Kan. (at USAS convention)

Oct. 17, 2015 - Los Angeles, Calif.

Oct. 31, 2015 - Seattle, Wash.

Nov. 7, 2015 - Charlotte, N.C.

Nov. 21, 2015 - Philadelphia, Pa.

Dec. 5, 2015 - Austin, Texas


Level 4 (Level 3 a prerequisite)

December 15, 2014 - January 15, 2015 - Register online


Stroke Development Clinics  

Sept. 27, 2015 - Oklahoma City, Okla.


ALTS Instructor Certification Class Schedule
Upcoming ALTS Instructor Certification Classes

Jan. 3, 2015 - Indianapolis, Ind. - Class Full!

Jan. 17, 2015 - Great Barrington, Mass. -  Register online

Feb. 7, 2015 - Orlando, Fla. - Register online

Mar. 15, 2015 - Phoenix, Ariz. - Register online

Mar. 17, 2015 - Denver, Colo. - Register online

Mar. 21, 2015 - Los Angeles, Calif. - Register online

Mar. 22, 2015 - San Jose, Calif. - Register online

Mar. 27, 2015 - Atlanta, Ga.

Mar. 28, 2015 - Dallas, Texas - Register online

May 16, 2015 - Seattle, Wash.

Sept. 30, 2015 - Kansas City, Kan. (at USAS convention)

Date TBD - Chicago, Ill.

Date TBD - Washington, D.C. area


Quick Links and Resources for Coaches
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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.
About STREAMLINES for Coaches
U.S. Masters Swimming encourages all U.S. Masters Swimming coaches to subscribe to STREAMLINES for Coaches. 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.
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