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pwolf66
August 9th, 2008, 11:12 PM
Did or did not his dolphin kicks happen BEFORE he started his arm pull on both the start and the turn? Because I sure saw that it happened before his hands started to move. Is this legal under FINA rules? Because it sure as heck isn't under USA swimming rules.

tjburk
August 9th, 2008, 11:19 PM
He is famous for doing two kicks...at least on the start usually....You have to watch close....as he enters is legs kick down...I teach this as part of the old keyhole dive.....works pretty good.....then as far as I know the kick is supposed to be par tof the downward pull.

pwolf66
August 9th, 2008, 11:26 PM
He did not do 2 kicks. But he CLEARLY kicked BEFORE his hands started the pull. From the FINA website:

/start
SW 7.4 During each complete cycle, some part of the swimmer's head shall break the surface of the water. After the start and after each turn, the swimmer may take one arm stroke completely back to the legs. The head must break the surface of the water before the hands turn inward at the widest part of the second stroke. A single downward dolphin kick followed by a breaststroke kick is permitted while wholly submerged. Following which, all movements of the legs shall be simultaneous and in the same horizontal plane without alternating movement.

Interpretation: A dolphin kick is not part of the cycle and is only permitted at the start and turn whilst the arms are pulling back to the legs or after the arm pull whilst wholly submerged followed by a breaststroke kick.
/end

Clearly he is guilty of violating the stroke rules. But gets a pass, again.

tjrpatt
August 9th, 2008, 11:26 PM
Kitajama can do whatever he wants and the stroke judges could care less. I still can't believe that the flutter kick is legal. Someone cheats at the last Olympics and because of that, the rules change. I don't get it.

A world ranked Masters breaststroker said one day, people who do this flutter kick in breastroke are wimps(I won't use the actual term he used).

pwolf66
August 9th, 2008, 11:29 PM
What flutter kick? Flutter kick is illegal. A single dolphin kick after you start your pull is not.

Why stop there? Why not go back to having to keep your head above the water at all times?

As someone who got deeked at a major meet 22 years ago (by my father no less) for supposedly 'kicking' during a VERY strong arm pull, I have no problems with this rule. It takes the guess work out of the S&T hands. You can choose not to kick, but at least your feet can undulate up and down as a result of your pull and you won't get deeked.

ande
August 9th, 2008, 11:44 PM
hansen kicks before the pull
kitajima used to kick as he pulled but now he kicks before he pulls

ande


Did or did not his dolphin kicks happen BEFORE he started his arm pull on both the start and the turn? Because I sure saw that it happened before his hands started to move. Is this legal under FINA rules? Because it sure as heck isn't under USA swimming rules.

pwolf66
August 9th, 2008, 11:48 PM
No, Hansen kicked as his hands went past his shoulders, well after he started his pull but Kitajima clearly kicked BEFORE his hands started to seperate and initiate the pulling action.

pwolf66
August 9th, 2008, 11:49 PM
hansen kicks before the pull
kitajima used to kick as he pulled but now he kicks before he pulls

ande

Which is a CLEAR violation of the FINA interpretation of the rule. The bolded section in my post is directly from the FINA site.

tjburk
August 9th, 2008, 11:51 PM
It doesn't say whether it should be at either end of the pull

pwolf66
August 9th, 2008, 11:56 PM
It doesn't say whether it should be at either end of the pull

Interpretation: A dolphin kick is not part of the cycle and is only permitted at the start and turn whilst the arms are pulling back to the legs or after the arm pull whilst wholly submerged followed by a breaststroke kick.


whist - occuring during, at the same time, coinciding with
after - at the end of, following

Seems pretty clear to me.

knelson
August 9th, 2008, 11:56 PM
It doesn't say whether it should be at either end of the pull

Sure it does. During or after the pull is what the rule says. It cannot be prior to the pull.

tjburk
August 10th, 2008, 12:04 AM
Here is the USS Rule:

Kick — After the start and each turn, a single butterfly kick, which must be followed by a breaststroke kick, is permitted during or at the completion of the first arm pull. Following which, all movements of the legs shall be simultaneous and in the same horizontal plane without alternating movement.

What you posted earlier from FINA was this:

SW 7.4 During each complete cycle, some part of the swimmer's head shall break the surface of the water. After the start and after each turn, the swimmer may take one arm stroke completely back to the legs. The head must break the surface of the water before the hands turn inward at the widest part of the second stroke. A single downward dolphin kick followed by a breaststroke kick is permitted while wholly submerged. Following which, all movements of the legs shall be simultaneous and in the same horizontal plane without alternating movement.


Very different wording.......

knelson
August 10th, 2008, 12:06 AM
Very different wording.......

Yes, but look at the interpretation section in the FINA rule. It amounts to the same thing: the dolphin kick is supposed to occur during or after the pull.

tjburk
August 10th, 2008, 12:08 AM
I was trying to find the actual FINA wording but can't get to it....that's why I used what was posted earlier......so that is NOT the correct wording from FINA?

knelson
August 10th, 2008, 12:32 AM
I was trying to find the actual FINA wording but can't get to it....that's why I used what was posted earlier......so that is NOT the correct wording from FINA?

No, that's the correct wording I believe. The interpretation section is part of the rule.

tjburk
August 10th, 2008, 12:35 AM
So, it sounds like they had some problems and put in the specific interpretation later.......by that yeah....he's guilty.

But then he has always been guilty!!!!! LOL:mooning:

If they have to add in an interpretation.....they need to re-write the rule.....

knelson
August 10th, 2008, 01:21 AM
..they need to re-write the rule.....

They probably will anyway, since it seems like the "rule" is that whatever Kitajima does is OK :)

Justin Ritter
August 10th, 2008, 02:59 AM
What exactly does "interpretation" mean in the context of the fina rule book anyway? It seems like an odd way to clarify or fix the rule, shouldn't they just change the wording of the rule itself? Maybe that process is much harder to do than tack on an "interpretation". Just looking at the base rule it seems what he does is legal. Of course with the "interpretation" what he does is not. Although if I was just reading the base rule I wouldn't interpret it to mean the kick must be during the pull.

I wonder two things though. How exactly the timing of his dolphin/pull looks to the official standing next to his block at the start and how much advantage putting the dolphin there provides. I can't imagine that it's as clear that his kick is prior to his pull from above and behind him as it is to us looking at the underwater footage. Also it seems to me that putting a kick in front of and completely detached from the pull is kind of an awkward place to put it. But I'm still trying to get used to putting a kick into my pulldown at all so what do I know.

He's still an insanely fast breaststroker. You take away his dolphin kick altogether and he's still going to be right up there at the front.

Midas
August 10th, 2008, 03:07 AM
He did the same kick when he set the 200 breaststroke world record earlier this year. You can see it clearly on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zcv9T3GtG4Y Everybody who should be paying attention must know this, and I suppose the rule is being interpreted so that it is legal. I guess you can say that the kick occurs at the commencement of the pull, if you have to justify it in your mind.

Once a butterfly kick is legal, doing it before the pulldown should generate the most speed/power and so it only makes sense to do it there. I think this to be the case because I think if you're already doing the pulldown, the kick will just be incremental. If you do the kick first, you get the full benefit.

I'm all for it. Since seeing that 200 breaststroke swim I linked to above, I've been working on doing my butterfly kick first and, while a little awkward, I do think it's faster when I do it "right".

chaos
August 10th, 2008, 08:00 AM
waaaaaaaaah!

pwolf66
August 10th, 2008, 08:06 AM
A single downward dolphin kick followed by a breaststroke kick is permitted while wholly submerged.
Very different wording.......

I can agree that the wording needs to be cleaned up. I have only sent the USA and FINA rules folks several emails over the last 2 years about this wording. But the kicker here is 'followed', as in coming after, if you dolphin kick before your pull, what action follows the dolphin kick? Yep, the pull, and that violates the rule. If the pull and dolphin kick occur at the same time, then the next action that follows is the breaststroke kick which does not violate the rule. Don't read more than what is written. Reading the wording clearly states that the breaststroke kick must follow the dolphin kick. Did FINA leave some potential interpretation issues with the wording? Yes, that's why the word 'immediately' needs to be added right before the 'followed'

Then again, that might be why FINA has the interpretation in the rules section on thier website.

Dolphin kick, arm pull, breaststroke kick sequence is clearly not following the stroke rules.

I have overheard many coaches in my area over the last 2 years saying that they would have thier swimmers kick first, and in each case I informed them that if they did, that swimmer is risking being DQ'ed for violating the stroke rules.

turkish
August 10th, 2008, 08:28 AM
Excuse me for being clueless but can someone explain in a simpler English what it is Kitajima does that is illegal? I don't swim breaststroke so I am a little confused by all the talk here? Maybe simpler English? Thanks :cry:

LindsayNB
August 10th, 2008, 10:44 AM
Looking at the youtube video of the 200 WR I would have a hard time saying for sure that he hadn't commenced the outsweep before the dolphin kick, it's very hard to see from the side view. Is the view in the Olympic video much clearer? Can you tell watching it the first time not in slow motion or frame by frame as the judges would have to?

BillS
August 10th, 2008, 10:53 AM
Paul, for what it's worth (which ain't much), I had the same initial impression when I saw the footage last night. But that was underwater slo-mo. I doubt it's possible for a stroke judge on the surface to tell when the kick starts in relation to the pull, especially on the start. And Kitajima's stroke cycle is so quick he looks like he's almost always starting a pull.

pwolf66
August 10th, 2008, 11:07 AM
BillS,

Except that I caught it off the start without seeing the replay footage. And then caught it off the turn again without replay (granted that was from an underwater viewpoint). I will give some benefit of the doubt here but. Is this rule being enforced as FINA has written it and has interpreted it? And if so, then how come the judges, who are 1 to a lane on either end miss this?

Allen Stark
August 10th, 2008, 03:20 PM
Looking at it carefully I can't say for sure that he hasn't started a little outsweep before the dolphin.If so it would be within the letter of the interpretation.It is certainly pushing the envelope.If I can't be sure with an underwater view,I doubt a stroke judge can be,and they certainly would want to be 100% certain before a DQ.Also his feet are insanely fast,when I first saw the WR race I thought he wasn't recovering his feet very far back.Lookiing at it in stop action I could see he was,they just start moving so fast it is hard to tell.

emartinez
August 10th, 2008, 03:31 PM
All:

I woke my kids up this morning when I yelled "That's illegal!" while watching Kitajima in slow motion after he'd won his preliminary heat. (I recorded the swimming and watched it this morning instead of last night.)

I am a certified USA Swimming and YMCA Swimming Official, going on my fifth year of officiating. Breaststroke is a CYCLICAL stroke defined as an arm pull, followed by a kick. After the 2004 Olympics, the Breaststroke rules were modified to include an optional dolphin kick at the start and after each turn.

If you watch Kitajima closely, both at the start and after the turn he used a dolphin kick while streamlining -- he made no attempt to even begin his arm pull before kicking. The technical wording of the DQ when a swimmer does that is "non-cyclical stroke". Kitajima should have been DQ'd and should not be swimming in the finals. I can only hope that one of the officials at the finals has the guts to make the call and that the chain of command have the guts to let the call stand.

I've seen better officiating at mini-meets.

And, BTW, what is with the NBC Commentators? For them to say "that's allowed now" shows total ignorance of the rules and their interpretations.

USMSarah
August 10th, 2008, 04:02 PM
He's a cheater and will always be a cheater. I did not pay close attention to his prelim swim - but I'm not surprised to hear this.

All I noticed was the little (insert choice word here) staying on deck watching for Hansen's time.

aquageek
August 10th, 2008, 04:30 PM
The whining commences again in earnest. Geez, move on, get over it. You may not like him but he's awesome.

knelson
August 10th, 2008, 04:40 PM
The whining commences again in earnest. Geez, move on, get over it. You may not like him but he's awesome.

I'm putting my money on Oen. He has looked great, but Kitajima could certainly get in there.

Geek, you must admit it's sort of funny they basically changed the rule because of Kitajima, yet he's still managed to find a way to cheat.

emartinez
August 10th, 2008, 05:08 PM
The whining commences again in earnest. Geez, move on, get over it. You may not like him but he's awesome.

aquageek,

Please define "awesome." I thought it meant something like "doing great things within the confines of the rules."

mazzy
August 10th, 2008, 05:15 PM
I've read some time ago that FINA was set to use at Beijing underwater cameras to support the call of officials, after the katajima/Hansen affair in Athens. Someone have any info about this one ?

It's time to make the underwater camera all under the pools a requisite at every Olympics and WC pool, with officials watching all the time every swimmers to uncover the cheaters.
I want never to see again another cheater win a gold.

aquageek
August 10th, 2008, 05:19 PM
I'm putting my money on Oen. He has looked great, but Kitajima could certainly get in there.

Geek, you must admit it's sort of funny they basically changed the rule because of Kitajima, yet he's still managed to find a way to cheat.

Maybe the wise sages of the USMS forum should be the judges, since we know so much more than the Olympic judges. Stop sniffling, stop whining, move on.

emartinez
August 10th, 2008, 05:22 PM
Is the view in the Olympic video much clearer? Can you tell watching it the first time not in slow motion or frame by frame as the judges would have to?

LindsayNB,

After I noticed the illegal move during the post-race, slo-mo replay, I replayed the tape and noticed he did the same thing after the turn, which was telecast at full speed. (NBC used the underwater camera for the turn as well.)

As an experienced official I can tell you with confidence that the illegal move would be visible and obvious for the Turn Judges (the Judges standing at each end of the lane) unless there were a lot of glare on the surface of the water. Generally, you watch each swimmer's entire body and look for the arms to reach the widest part of the stroke before the swimmer performs any kick--be it a dolphin-breaststroke combo, or just a breaststroke kick. Just starting to move the arms apart does not qualify as the beginning of an arm pull; the hands have to turn inward and start pulling water in order for the arm pull to have commenced. No kick may take place until an arm pull has begun due to the cyclical nature of the breaststroke.

In the Olympics, there are two Turn Judges assigned to each lane--one on each end. Judges have no excuse--other than glare--for not noticing such an obvious infraction by the only swimmer they are supposed to be watching. I doubt very much that both ends of Lane 4 in the pool would have been affected by severe glare in an indoor facility.

pwolf66
August 10th, 2008, 05:49 PM
Generally, you watch each swimmer's entire body and look for the arms to reach the widest part of the stroke before the swimmer performs any kick--be it a dolphin-breaststroke combo, or just a breaststroke kick. Just starting to move the arms apart does not qualify as the beginning of an arm pull; the hands have to turn inward and start pulling water in order for the arm pull to have commenced. No kick may take place until an arm pull has begun due to the cyclical nature of the breaststroke.


Yes, the motion of the hands towards the hips does consistute the start of the arm pull. And we're taught to watch the feet then check the hands not to watch the middle of the swimmer.

Also, there is no requirement that the hands must be turned inward.

pwolf66
August 10th, 2008, 05:51 PM
I've read some time ago that FINA was set to use at Beijing underwater cameras to support the call of officials, after the katajima/Hansen affair in Athens. Someone have any info about this one ?

It's time to make the underwater camera all under the pools a requisite at every Olympics and WC pool, with officials watching all the time every swimmers to uncover the cheaters.
I want never to see again another cheater win a gold.

That is an interesting idea but is logistically unsupportable. That would require 16 cameras, one for each end for each lane. Quality underwater cameras are still expensive.

chaos
August 10th, 2008, 05:53 PM
i think its pathetic that so many people can't appreciate someone's preformance because they are watching the games through their red,white and blue glasses.

breaststroke has evolved through the years because it had to. when i was in highschool, it was "illeagal" for ones head to submerge each stroke cycle,
enforced....never.

so, unless you want to honor captain webb and those wonderful one-piece burlap suits.........embrace change.

new
August 10th, 2008, 05:58 PM
even if Kitajima doesn't do the "illegal" kick, he would win...

and who knows, maybe next year rules will be changed again

I would rather to watch him brake the WR by doing that, than watch him being disqualified

pwolf66
August 10th, 2008, 05:58 PM
i think its pathetic that so many people can't appreciate someone's preformance because they are watching the games through their red,white and blue glasses.


Way to attack the person not the argument.

Kitajima CLEARLY kicked BEFORE his hands started to pull at the start AND the turn. FINA rules are pretty clear that that is not a legal breaststroke. I actually rewinded the race to verify what I saw. And I did see it off the start, my wife asked me what I yelled about.


Just like it was CLEAR that Kitajima dolphin kicked in 2004.

But hey, it appears to me from your comments that you favor either a) cheaters or b) the elimination of all rules. Each to his own.

chaos
August 10th, 2008, 06:04 PM
Way to attack the person not the argument.

Kitajima CLEARLY kicked BEFORE his hands started to pull at the start AND the turn. FINA rules are pretty clear that that is not a legal breaststroke. I actually rewinded the race to verify what I saw. And I did see it off the start, my wife asked me what I yelled about.


Just like it was CLEAR that Kitajima dolphin kicked in 2004.

But hey, it appears to me from your comments that you favor either a) cheaters or b) the elimination of all rules. Each to his own.

i don't really care what country brings home what hardware.
and i would favor...... c) the elimination of silly rules and/or rules that cannot be accurately enforced or offences of said rules that don't offer a clear advantage..............but hey, thats just me.

Allen Stark
August 10th, 2008, 06:32 PM
I've been opposed to the dolphin kick rule because it is BREASTSTROKE,not butterfly.It is my understanding that the rule change was being contemplated before the 04 Games.The idea as I understood it was that as people pulled many had some body movement and it was hard to tell what was legal and what was not.Adding a kick before the pull is just asking to be able to sneak another in at the pull.I REALLY hope they don't change this rule again to allow more dolphin kicks.

knelson
August 10th, 2008, 07:09 PM
i don't really care what country brings home what hardware.

Me either. Let the best man who isn't cheating win.


and i would favor...... c) the elimination of silly rules and/or rules that cannot be accurately enforced or offences of said rules that don't offer a clear advantage

The problem is that rule CAN be enforced, it just hasn't been at the Olympics. Lots of people get DQed for doing this at other meets.

I'm a little shocked that anyone is somehow accepting of this kind of cheating, but everyone seems against the drug cheats. What's the difference? Cheating is cheating.

aquageek
August 10th, 2008, 07:57 PM
Nothing makes me cry more than seeing grown men cry. Boo flippin' hoo. With your DVRs and Beta Maxes going full bore and four years of hand wringing angst you still can't convince anyone that he is doing something illegal. But I look forward to four more years of man-snifflin' whining if he wins again, which seems likely.

The comparison between a drug using busted cheater and a competitor who has not been busted for cheating is bizarre.

Keep the VCRs running hot, fruitcakes!

tjrpatt
August 10th, 2008, 08:00 PM
I hope that the Norway guy gets it.

tjburk
August 10th, 2008, 09:28 PM
Nothing makes me cry more than seeing grown men cry. Boo flippin' hoo. With your DVRs and Beta Maxes going full bore and four years of hand wringing angst you still can't convince anyone that he is doing something illegal. But I look forward to four more years of man-snifflin' whining if he wins again, which seems likely.

The comparison between a drug using busted cheater and a competitor who has not been busted for cheating is bizarre.

Keep the VCRs running hot, fruitcakes!

So some form of cheating is Ok and some is not? What the.........that makes absolutely no sense........so now y'all can pick and choose what form of cheating is ok.....mainly from those of you that probably aren't even Breaststrokers.......if it was from any of your easier sissy strokes you'd be having a hissy fit!!!!!! LOL

tjburk
August 10th, 2008, 09:48 PM
I can agree that the wording needs to be cleaned up. I have only sent the USA and FINA rules folks several emails over the last 2 years about this wording. But the kicker here is 'followed', as in coming after, if you dolphin kick before your pull, what action follows the dolphin kick? Yep, the pull, and that violates the rule. If the pull and dolphin kick occur at the same time, then the next action that follows is the breaststroke kick which does not violate the rule. Don't read more than what is written. Reading the wording clearly states that the breaststroke kick must follow the dolphin kick. Did FINA leave some potential interpretation issues with the wording? Yes, that's why the word 'immediately' needs to be added right before the 'followed'

Then again, that might be why FINA has the interpretation in the rules section on thier website.

Dolphin kick, arm pull, breaststroke kick sequence is clearly not following the stroke rules.

I have overheard many coaches in my area over the last 2 years saying that they would have thier swimmers kick first, and in each case I informed them that if they did, that swimmer is risking being DQ'ed for violating the stroke rules.

Yeah, the USS rule clarifies the rule nicely by saying that it must be done during the pull.....without that clarification you really can put it wherever you want, because adding the Single Dolphin kick anywhere in there destroys the cyclical nature of Breaststroke. The original rule was too ambiguous leaving room for way too many ways to interpret it. By just saying that a single Dolphin Kick is allowed at the start and at each turn period.........you could do the kick prior to the arm pull and still maintain stroke integrity.....because then you could do the pull and the kick in order like is required. Technically, the way it is right now is still not maintaining the integrity of the stroke:

On the start and each turn you can do 1 pull and 2 kicks (1 dolphin, 1 breast) the rest of the time it's 1 and 1.

chaos
August 10th, 2008, 10:31 PM
Me either. Let the best man who isn't cheating win.



The problem is that rule CAN be enforced, it just hasn't been at the Olympics.


do i hear "BOYCOTT"?

tjrpatt
August 10th, 2008, 10:39 PM
I almost threw up watching that 100 Breast race.

Hansen needs to retire or maybe it is time to change coaches. Eddie Reese is great but maybe Hansen needs a change.

I really feel bad for him because no one will know who he was in 10 years outside the swimming community.

chaos
August 10th, 2008, 10:46 PM
.

I really feel bad for him because no one will know who he was in 10 years outside the swimming community.

does anyone know who he is now outside the swimming community?

maybe you're thinking he should get a new agent.

personally, i think BH exemplifies what an olympic athlete should be.

USMSarah
August 10th, 2008, 10:51 PM
I almost threw up watching that 100 Breast race.

Hansen needs to retire or maybe it is time to change coaches. Eddie Reese is great but maybe Hansen needs a change.

I really feel bad for him because no one will know who he was in 10 years outside the swimming community.

Maybe it was just a bad/missed taper for Trials and he couldn't recover. I for one, will always remember him - he was and still is an amazing competitor for the US... one of my favorites. He can still get some redemption and bring home some hardware on the relay.

thewookiee
August 10th, 2008, 10:52 PM
Glad I didn't record this race.

taruky
August 10th, 2008, 10:54 PM
I watched the start of the finals very carefully, and Kitajima did nothing different than Hanson. Both of them initiated the breaststroke kick at the same time the arms were moving forward into streamline.

pwolf66
August 10th, 2008, 11:41 PM
What a fantastic race by Kitajima. Brendan, I hope you don't retire. You've got some great swims left in you.

knelson
August 11th, 2008, 12:47 AM
Both of them initiated the breaststroke kick at the same time the arms were moving forward into streamline.

The breaststroke kick isn't at issue, it's the dolphin kick. The dolphin kick must occur during or after the pulldown, not before. Some people have said Kitajima is timing the downstroke of his dolphin kick to be exactly the same time he initiates the pull and that would be legal. Remember the wording about "downward dolphin kick."

hofffam
August 11th, 2008, 01:07 AM
The kick (or not) isn't the issue. Kitajima is a warrior and Hansen isn't. He is so far the biggest disappointment of the US team.

Next in line? Coughlin. She won't win 100 back.

Midas
August 11th, 2008, 01:53 AM
Kitajima is the consummate "big meet swimmer" and I have become a fan. It surprised me as I've been a big fan of Hansen for years, but it's hard to root for a guy who so consistently flakes out under the pressure. Not that I blame him--the pressure must be amazing. But Kitajima has both the physical skills (Hansen is probably the better "pure" breaststroker) but Kitajima puts it together with the ability to rise the occasion when it counts.

I'm glad Kitajima wasn't DQ'd and hope that FINA "re-clarifies" their "interpretation" of the otherwise rather clear rule to make this issue go away. Doing the butterfly kick at the beginning of the pulldown makes tremendous sense. I want to do it myself and I don't want the local refs DQ'ing me for something that the world record holder is permitted to do.

M_Tyson
August 11th, 2008, 06:56 AM
The question is not whether Kitajima's underwater actions are in violation of the rules (which they clearly are) but why swimmers aren't being disqualified for these actions.
(Personally, I would like to see this rule changed -- my preference is to do a dolphin before the pull. But the rule presumably is to offset any complaints that a dolphin kick is not intentional but a consequence of the pull-down. This rule covers that downward movement of the legs, but you can't do it twice!

As long as this is the rule, we should all be required to follow it, or all be allowed to ignore it. Since it is on the books, I would urge FINA to enforce it. If I were a FINA official, I would warn the swimmers that it will be enforced, and then do it.

As for Kitajima, since he is an experienced swimmer, and he was doing an obvious double dolphin at a (previous) FINA meet, I can only conclude he was intentionally trying to cheat. I would have immediately DQ'ed him if I were a judge. I believe he is also intentionally ignoring the rule regarding the order of the stroke and dolphin kick.)
Breaststroke has always had people that abused the rules. The problem in this case is what the officials can or can not see. It is difficult, but not impossible, to see this violation from the surface.

I'm not aware of any FINA rule that says that judging can only observe visually from the surface of the pool. I'd suggest that FINA indicate that officials may use underwater views as long as each lane is equally monitored.

I note that NBC did not show the underwater pulls of Kitajima in the finals of the 100. I couldn't figure out how to post something at NBC's site, so I sent a "news tip" to our local NBC affiliate indicating the violation of the rule. I'm disappointed that Rowdy doesn't know the rules and focussed on the double dolphin (which K. has used in other meets, but has not shown in the 4 underwater shots of his turns in these Olympics).

As you know, this rule change happened at the beginning of 2006. As I was going to swim at the Worlds at Stanford (where FINA rules apply, not USMS), I paid very close attention to the rule and its wording.

At the Stanford FINA Master World Champs, I asked a FINA stroke judge about the rule. He indicated that if the hands come apart, the stroke is considered to have started. I take that to mean that if the hands haven't come apart, the stroke has not started. Thus starting the downward part of the dolphin kick before that means that the dolphin kick is not "whilst" the stroke.

I closely watched the underwater shots shown during the TV coverage of the 2007 World Champs and some of the professional meets. In the pro meets, the women (Kirk, etc.) seemed to properly start the dolphin kick after the hands separated. In the 2007 Worlds, I did not see any of the US men do it improperly (but that doesn't mean they didn't) but Kitajima and several Europeans did double dolphin kicks, and started the dolphin before the stroke.

I suspect the FINA rule was written originally thinking of the stroke/kick cycle. The ordering of the sentences about the stroke and then the kicks implied that the dolphin kick occurred after the stroke. But it wasn't clear, so the interpretation was added.

Relevant links:

USMS
Rules page: http://www.usms.org/rules/

101.2.3 Kick—After the start and after each turn, a single butterfly (dolphin) kick, which must be followed by a breaststroke kick, is permitted during or at the completion of the first arm pull.Historical:
2005 Enacted Rules Changes:
http://www.usms.org/admin/minutes/rules-2005-9-18-4.pdf

Additional Changes to USMS Rules of Competition (includes
interpretations)
http://www.usms.org/admin/minutes/rules-2005-9-22-5.pdf
FINA
http://www.fina.org/project/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=45&Itemid=119

SW 7.4 During each complete cycle, some part of the swimmer's head shall break the surface of the water. After the start and after each turn, the swimmer may take one arm stroke completely back to the legs. After the start and after each turn, the swimmer may take one arm stroke completely back to the legs. The head must break the surface of the water before the hands turn inward at the widest part of the second stroke. A single downward dolphin kick followed by a breaststroke kick is permitted while wholly submerged. Following which, all movements of the legs shall be simultaneous and in the same horizontal plane without alternating movement.

Interpretation: A dolphin kick is not part of the cycle and is only permitted at the start and turn whilst the arms are pulling back to the legs or after the arm pull whilst wholly submerged followed by a breaststroke kick.
USA Swimming
http://www.usaswimming.org/USASWeb/_Rainbow/Documents/dcd3fe76-c17c-4429-a22c-667b4f7c3235/2008%20Rulebook%20no%20cover.pdf

After the start and each turn, a single butterfly kick, which must be followed by a breaststroke kick, is permitted during or at the completion of the first arm pull. Following which, all movements of the legs shall be simultaneous and in the same horizontal plane without alternating movement.
Historical:
USA Swimming Adopts FINA Rule Changes to the Breaststroke* and Backstroke effective September 21, 2005 !! click here for interpretation of these rule changes (http://www.usaswimming.org/USASWeb/_Rainbow/Documents/3dc2ed4e-a34b-4e98-a5e5-5d2efb6acb54/Amends%20to%20FINA%20rules%20changes%20at%202005%2 0Convention2.pdf)

*Additional Interpretation of the Breaststroke Rule issued 2/21/2006, click here (http://www.usaswimming.org/USASWeb/_Rainbow/Documents/f82398e2-4e5b-4ac1-8ce7-39b707b20df0/Breaststroke%20Interpretation%20BW%20per%20B%20Str atton%202-22-06.pdf)
NCAA
http://www.ncaa.org/library/rules/2007/2007_swim_dive_rules.pdf

Some part of the swimmer’s head shall break the surface of the water at least once during each complete cycle of one arm stroke and one leg kick, in that order, except after the start and each turn whereby the swimmer may take one arm stroke completely back to the legs, a single downward dolphin kick, followed by a breaststroke leg kick while
wholly submerged.

cowsvils
August 11th, 2008, 08:32 AM
What he is doing is legal under FINA rules, thanks to some kind of funky wording

The Fortress
August 11th, 2008, 09:55 AM
Why is it faster to do the dolphin kick before the pull?

Midas
August 11th, 2008, 10:23 AM
Why is it faster to do the dolphin kick before the pull?

A very good question that I don't think we know the answer to for sure. I personally think that isolating the kick and the pulldown generates net more power than doing them at the same time. The combined "whole" is less than the sum of its parts. If you're already generating power from the pulldown, the kick adds only incremental power at best. Do it first and you generate the full benefit of the kick.

But it could be that I'm wrong. Maybe it's slower or at least no faster. It's not like Kitajima blew everybody away on the walls in the finals...

I still say he kicks at the commencement of his pulldown and that is consistent with the rules. I don't think the judges are missing anything and I don't think they're turning a blind eye. Kitajima is not the only guy to do his butterfly kick at the commencement of the pulldown anyway, as M_Tyson notes. For example, you can see others doing it on the Youtube video of Kitajima's 200 breaststroke record.

aquageek
August 11th, 2008, 10:35 AM
He's a better swimmer. The race is over. The big Beijing Breast Showdown never materialized. Are we ever gonna move on?

matysekj
August 11th, 2008, 10:43 AM
Why is it faster to do the dolphin kick before the pull?

I tried it out in the pool yesterday, and my conclusion is that it has the potential to be a little faster. Not much, but a little. It is awkward to me, as it isn't a natural thing to do at the start of the stroke (or before). However, when you do it that early, you get TWO surges forward instead of just the one for the pull with the integrated dolphin kick. Since you get such a big surge on the pull without the dolphin kick, I don't think the added coincident kick gives you as much overall time improvement as a separate kick can give.

It's still too awkward for me to try it in any races, but I think it has potential. I think that if you time it right, the downward portion of the dolphin kick can occur as your hands start to move, making it legal. Remember, only the downward portion of the dolphin kick must occur coincident with the pull, not the "set up" portion of the kick. This may well be what Kitajima is doing. I don't know - I'd have to watch for this very closely in slow motion on the replays to be sure.

hofffam
August 11th, 2008, 11:25 AM
He's a better swimmer. The race is over. The big Beijing Breast Showdown never materialized. Are we ever gonna move on?

Exactly. Kitajima kicked some serious ass. It is that simple.

emartinez
August 11th, 2008, 11:27 AM
i think its pathetic that so many people can't appreciate someone's preformance because they are watching the games through their red,white and blue glasses.

chaos,

I'm not sure what anyone's said that would lead you to the conclusion that our critique is tainted by a pro-American bias. I enjoy swimming: I enjoy watching my kids swim, watching other people's kids swim, officiating at swim meets even if my kids aren't swimming, and watching world class competition.

I don't care who wins, I just want them to do so w/o flagrantly breaking the rules. I take the role officiating very seriously and am disappointed to see such poor officiating at this world class event.

emartinez
August 11th, 2008, 11:29 AM
i don't really care what country brings home what hardware.
and i would favor...... c) the elimination of silly rules and/or rules that cannot be accurately enforced or offences of said rules that don't offer a clear advantage..............but hey, thats just me.

And what advantage is it you DON'T see from allowing a swimmer to dolphin kick while still streamlined, while all others are following the rules?

aquageek
August 11th, 2008, 11:31 AM
And what advantage is it you DON'T see from allowing a swimmer to dolphin kick while still streamlined, while all others are following the rules?

And the beat goes on.

emartinez
August 11th, 2008, 11:42 AM
What he is doing is legal under FINA rules, thanks to some kind of funky wording

No, it isn't. You're just demonstrating that you're not a trained official. Take the word of those of us who are, he is violating the breast stroke cycle. I even confirmed this with one of my USA Swimming Officials Instructors, who has served on the USA Swimming National Rules Committee. He assured me that USA Swimming Rules are an English translation of FINA Rules, which are published in French.

emartinez
August 11th, 2008, 11:44 AM
Why is it faster to do the dolphin kick before the pull?

Because if you do it while streamlined, there's less drag from the water and you get further propulsion.

mctrusty
August 11th, 2008, 12:08 PM
Exactly. Kitajima kicked some serious ass. It is that simple.

Yeah. I thought his real strength in the race was not on the walls or the start, but the last 25m on in to the finish. He was just plain fierce.

tjburk
August 11th, 2008, 01:29 PM
He's a better swimmer. The race is over. The big Beijing Breast Showdown never materialized. Are we ever gonna move on?

Spoken like a true Non-Breaststroker!!!!!!!:duel:

chaos
August 11th, 2008, 01:29 PM
chaos,

I'm not sure what anyone's said that would lead you to the conclusion that our critique is tainted by a pro-American bias.

hmmmm, top 5 in the WORLD and some folks on this very forum are asking him to change coaches, retire, etc. statements like "i'm glad i didn't record that race", etc

LindsayNB
August 11th, 2008, 01:39 PM
No, it isn't. You're just demonstrating that you're not a trained official. Take the word of those of us who are, he is violating the breast stroke cycle.

Interestingly, the FINA interpretation starts:


A dolphin kick is not part of the cycle...

Which could reasonably be interpreted as saying that breast stroke cycle considerations do not apply.

smontanaro
August 11th, 2008, 01:40 PM
The big Beijing Breast Showdown never materialized.

I wasn't aware the Brazilians had already finished their synchro routines!

Skip

hammr7
August 11th, 2008, 04:10 PM
I'm a newbie here, but had to jump in after seeing this thread. I am both a swim official, and a trainer of swim officials. I have been involved in swim officiating as a starter and referee for a decade. I apologize if my submission is a bit technical. I was stunned as I watched the semifinals on TV. I can only speak for Kitajima's semifinal swim, and then only off the blocks, but to my view - thank you underwater cameras - Kitajima's start was illegal and he should have been DQ'ed.

I deal mainly with US Swimming technical rules. Having said this, FINA and US swimming have virtually identical interpretations of a Breaststroke start. As a cycle stroke, the pull must come first, followed by the kick. The initial pull and kick (off the blocks or a wall) are both anomalies. The first breaststroke pull can extend beyond the hips, and the first breaststroke kick can be preceded by a butterfly kick. The interpretation from both governing bodies has been that the butterfly kick cannot commence before the initiation of the pull, since the butterfly kick must be followed by the breaststroke kick (without an intervening breaststroke pull).

There is some slight controversy over when a pull is initiated. Some trainers will teach that a pull begins when the hands begin to pull water. For others, the pull begins when the arms are at their farthest apart (setting up for the pull toward the breast). For virtually all breaststrokers these two events occur at the same time. Please note that neither interpretation considers the mere separation of the hands from each other (as at the end of the glide) as commencing the "pull". Such an interpretation would have unintended consequences that could create havoc, leading to incomplete stroke cycle violations during the two-hand touch at the wall.

My interpretation of Kitajima was that off the blocks he used the butterfly kick to extend the glide. It looked exactly like what a butterflyer or even a freestyler might do while submerged, except he limited himself to the one downward kick. During most, if not all, of the kick his hands remained extended, together, in front of his body. After the butterfly kick he performed his first pull, his breaststroke kick, and surfaced promptly for his second pull.

I cannot speak for what other swimmers did, as I wasn't able to record the event. Since the TV program spotlighted Kitajima I was focused on what he did. And I don't care if some other swimmers did it as well; multiple wrongs don't make a right, and every other swimmer that did it should also have been DQ'ed.

I'd also like to mention, in response to a few entries in this thread, that there is nothing in the rules that states that an infraction must be a benefit to the swimmer before it can be called. Having said this, world class athletes rarely incorporate any element that doesn't have an advantage to them.

The call itself is not the easiest for the turn official at the block end to call, at least not during the start of the race. These officials are supposed to be back from the blocks at the start. They move up (typically at least two steps) after the start. The officials must contend with splash from the swimmers, and turbulence in the water where the swimmer has entered (and where the swimmers legs are). And then there is always the possibility of glare. I didn't get a split, but the alleged infraction occurred quickly, within the first few seconds of the swim. So it is not an easy call to make, especially under the pressure of dealing with a renowned swimmer at the Olympics. My guess is that the swimmer(s) are more subtle with this situation in the subsequent laps.

It will be interesting to see what FINA (and ultimately US Swimming) will do. I have been in touch with a few US rule makers, and at this point they are non-committal. They continue to say that the rules do not allow the butterfly kick to precede the first pull, and that Kitajima must not have initiated his butterfly kick before his pull. Most haven't had a chance to review the start of the race, but my guess is that video evidence will prove otherwise (If anyone has a hi-def version please let me know!).

FINA will likely respond with a "clarification" only if the furor grows. Unfortunately, politics are sometimes more important than the rules, and any clarification may become a modification. We've already seen a recent example of this. FINA may decide to allow the butterfly kick before, during, or after the first pull as a practical matter, allowing the stroke to evolve. If so, at least this will make it fairer for all competitors, which should be the ultimate goal of any regulation. I very much doubt FINA will ever admit that this was a blown call. That would be too damaging to them, and to one of the sport's superstars, a superstar who has never considered his actions to be controversial, much less illegal.

knelson
August 11th, 2008, 04:42 PM
Please note that neither interpretation considers the mere separation of the hands from each other (as at the end of the glide) as commencing the "pull". Such an interpretation would have unintended consequences that could create havoc, leading to incomplete stroke cycle violations during the two-hand touch at the wall.

This is a slight tangent, but care to discuss this more? The topic of incomplete stroke cycles at the wall has come up before. It's my understanding that an incomplete cycle is OK at the wall (e.g., you can pull without following with a kick going into the turn only).

pwolf66
August 11th, 2008, 05:07 PM
you have to finish the cycle

No, you don't. You can touch (wall or finish) with an incomplete breaststroke cycle. It is legal. But granted you rarely want to because it is slower than touching at full extension which is where you normally could be after a full cycle.


.4 Turns and Finish — At each turn and at the finish of the race, the touch shall be made with
both hands simultaneously at, above, or below the water level. The head may be submerged
after the last arm pull prior to the touch, provided it breaks the surface of the water at some
point during the last complete or incomplete cycle preceding the touch.

elise526
August 11th, 2008, 10:30 PM
The kick (or not) isn't the issue. Kitajima is a warrior and Hansen isn't. He is so far the biggest disappointment of the US team.

Next in line? Coughlin. She won't win 100 back.

WRONG!!!! Don't ever underestimate Natalie!

hofffam
August 11th, 2008, 10:45 PM
WRONG!!!! Don't ever underestimate Natalie!

I eat my words (happily).....

Midas
August 12th, 2008, 09:19 AM
I take it everybody saw that Liesel Jones also does her butterfly kick before commencing her pulldown. Just curious where the outrage is?

pwolf66
August 12th, 2008, 09:26 AM
I take it everybody saw that Liesel Jones also does her butterfly kick before commencing her pulldown. Just curious where the outrage is?

Decided to stay out of this.

aquageek
August 12th, 2008, 09:28 AM
I take it everybody saw that Liesel Jones also does her butterfly kick before commencing her pulldown. Just curious where the outrage is?

All the know-it-alls on this forum who can judge better than every elite level judge in the world have filled up their DVRs with ever race Kitajima has swum over the past decade and can't record this event.

pwolf66
August 12th, 2008, 09:36 AM
Geek nailed it in one.

Midas
August 12th, 2008, 08:29 PM
All the know-it-alls on this forum who can judge better than every elite level judge in the world have filled up their DVRs with ever race Kitajima has swum over the past decade and can't record this event.

LOL. Must be so! Bottom line, the rule or the interpretation will be revised to permit this. At least, I hope so. I'm already practicing it in my workouts!

dclaryjr
August 12th, 2008, 09:28 PM
The officials must contend with splash from the swimmers, and turbulence in the water where the swimmer has entered (and where the swimmers legs are). And then there is always the possibility of glare. I didn't get a split, but the alleged infraction occurred quickly, within the first few seconds of the swim. So it is not an easy call to make, especially under the pressure of dealing with a renowned swimmer at the Olympics.

Everything you say above is true--especially the last sentence. Just imagine the reverberations of making that call. It would probably be easier to press a 200lb dumbbell then to raise your hand for that call.


I have been in touch with a few US rule makers, and at this point they are non-committal. Well I've been in touch with the top US rule interpreter (Bruce Stratton) and he agreed that it was an illegal kick that warranted a DQ. However, he also said what you said, almost word for word, about how difficult a call it would have been to make.



(If anyone has a hi-def version please let me know!).I don't have a high-def clip but it's pretty clear. I loaded it to YouTube but damn if NBC didn't find it. I'll be glad to email it to you. You can email me a dclaryjr@yahoo.com

Dave Clary
Corpus Christi, TX

breastroker
August 13th, 2008, 01:07 AM
I haven't been on the forum for a while, people like aquageek and others just seem to be here to upset others, not really contributing.

Bottom line, breaststroke has had lots to be DQd over the last 54 years.

Yes, MANY swimmers got DQd when their head slipped below the waters surface.

And MANY got DQd during the pulldown for dolphining. Ask the great John Moffet how many times he got the DQ slip for that!

And others got DQd with a downwards dolphin after the stroke kick. A upwards dolphin is legal!!

And some do seem to get the fact that many of our judges ARE more qualified and certainly more honest than may of the Olympic judges.
Except for the Brittish, most of the the Olympic officials are political hacks.

They would not dare DQ Cheater Kitajima!



And certainly let no one question the good intentions of the FINA GODS, who can't wait to change a rule when some other country has found a way to beat the americans.

Over 40 years I have seen thousands of swim meets, and let me say our officials are great. It isn't hard to see violations in breaststroke, many friends ask me to look at their breaststroke races, to see why they were DQd last race. And every time it was easy to see the violations.

mctrusty
August 13th, 2008, 10:40 AM
I
And certainly let no one question the good intentions of the FINA GODS, who can't wait to change a rule when some other country has found a way to beat the americans.


FINA is not an American organization. I don't think it has anything to do with changing rules in the Americans' favor. In fact, if they change the rules now, you could argue on a similar premise that FINA is in the Norwegians' pocket. Maybe Oen would have won.

lefty
August 13th, 2008, 10:49 AM
FINA is not an American organization. I don't think it has anything to do with changing rules in the Americans' favor. In fact, if they change the rules now, you could argue on a similar premise that FINA is in the Norwegians' pocket. Maybe Oen would have won.

A few examples of FINA working against the US: Why do 2 athletes make the team instead of 3 (it used to be 3)? BEcause FINA was tired of sweeps by the US. And at the 76 games the 400 Free Relays was eliminated for 2 Olympics because the AMericans were too dominant.

aquageek
August 13th, 2008, 10:54 AM
A few examples of FINA working against the US: Why do 2 athletes make the team instead of 3 (it used to be 3)? BEcause FINA was tired of sweeps by the US. And at the 76 games the 400 Free Relays was eliminated for 2 Olympics because the AMericans were too dominant.

I think argument is less valid now. Based on this Olympics and the past few, I can think of very few, if any events where having the top 3 US swimmers from trials would have meant a US sweep in the games.

tjburk
August 13th, 2008, 10:55 AM
FINA is not an American organization. I don't think it has anything to do with changing rules in the Americans' favor. In fact, if they change the rules now, you could argue on a similar premise that FINA is in the Norwegians' pocket. Maybe Oen would have won.

He was being sarcastic....basically saying that FINA is out to get Americans.

hofffam
August 13th, 2008, 11:00 AM
A few examples of FINA working against the US: Why do 2 athletes make the team instead of 3 (it used to be 3)? BEcause FINA was tired of sweeps by the US. And at the 76 games the 400 Free Relays was eliminated for 2 Olympics because the AMericans were too dominant.

I don't think FINA made the # of athletes change. I think that was an IOC change.

I'm not defending FINA by the way.

LindsayNB
August 13th, 2008, 11:10 AM
Isn't it the case that is good for Americans for FINA to change the rules to allow everyone, including Americans, to do what is supposedly giving a non-American swimmer an advantage?

Also, according to a previous poster it started out with two per team and was changed to three for a few Olympics and then went back to two. Having more swimmers per event only benefits the countries with the largest populations, hardly a good thing for a competition that is supposed to include as many nations as possible.

Midas
August 13th, 2008, 12:31 PM
Again, please everybody calling Kitajima a cheater should also include Liesel Jones, since she too does the butterfly kick first (as do many others--boy would it be great to get some more underwater shots from NBC). The "interpretation" of the rule is pointless any way and needs to be eliminated since it is clearly not going to be enforced, except perhaps by US judges against US swimmers. Can't we get this fixed? Like others are saying, let's even the playing field by making this clearly legal.

M_Tyson
August 13th, 2008, 04:48 PM
The assertion that someone made that Leisel Jones did her kick before her pull is NOT supported by what has been broadcast on NBC, unless it was in the semis.

In the turn in the 100 finals, her arms separated 4 frames (about 0.12 seconds) before the downward dolphin started. We didn't see the start. In the 200 heats, the one time they showed (after the race was over) the beginning of the downward kick, it also was about the same amount of delay. (They didn't show underwater on her 100 heats. I missed the semis)

If there is another turn or start where she dolphined before starting her stroke, please clarify where you saw it.


In the 200 heats, Kitajima again started his downward dolphin before his hands separated on the start (shown after the race). I count about 4 frames after his knees start downward before his upper(left) hand fingers disappear to behind his lower hand. (ie, his hands are still overlapped at that point, but he's finally started moving them). In the one turn we saw, he started his stroke before he dolphined. In my mind, this only strengthens the case that he is knowingly doing this.

There are those that break the rules until they get caught, and there are those that try to obey the rules. I know which group I would put Kitajima.

Is there some way to ask FINA for a clarification of the rules, using underwater Olympic footage, so we can understand whether Kitajima's technique is considered within the rules? If it is within the rules (by some reasoning I can't fathom), then it should be clarified and we all should be able to do it. If it is not within the rules, then FINA should be acknowledge that they were unable to call the DQ at the time and his result stands, but he should have been DQed.

Midas
August 13th, 2008, 05:44 PM
The assertion that someone made that Leisel Jones did her kick before her pull is NOT supported by what has been broadcast on NBC, unless it was in the semis.

In the turn in the 100 finals, her arms separated 4 frames (about 0.12 seconds) before the downward dolphin started. We didn't see the start. In the 200 heats, the one time they showed (after the race was over) the beginning of the downward kick, it also was about the same amount of delay. (They didn't show underwater on her 100 heats. I missed the semis)

If there is another turn or start where she dolphined before starting her stroke, please clarify where you saw it.


In the 200 heats, Kitajima again started his downward dolphin before his hands separated on the start (shown after the race). I count about 4 frames after his knees start downward before his upper(left) hand fingers disappear to behind his lower hand. (ie, his hands are still overlapped at that point, but he's finally started moving them). In the one turn we saw, he started his stroke before he dolphined. In my mind, this only strengthens the case that he is knowingly doing this.

There are those that break the rules until they get caught, and there are those that try to obey the rules. I know which group I would put Kitajima.

Is there some way to ask FINA for a clarification of the rules, using underwater Olympic footage, so we can understand whether Kitajima's technique is considered within the rules? If it is within the rules (by some reasoning I can't fathom), then it should be clarified and we all should be able to do it. If it is not within the rules, then FINA should be acknowledge that they were unable to call the DQ at the time and his result stands, but he should have been DQed.

You're kidding, right? Jones does her kick before her pull. End of story. Arm separation is no pull. And even so, there's no way a judge is going to be able to distinguish in .12 of a second what came first. That's beyond way to close to call. They're either both in the wrong, or both in the right. A rule that hinges on .12 of a second is unworkable.

But I will check this on my DVR tonight...

hofffam
August 13th, 2008, 05:48 PM
I have a problem with rules that are inherently difficult to enforce. I wasn't on the pool deck but man this has to be hard to judge from the deck. The speed, the turbulence, bubbles, distance between hands and feet, and glare would make it a huge challenge.

I would hate to see the day when we require slo-mo underwater instant replay to judge all the races.

Why couldn't the rule say one dolphin kick anytime you want it before you surface? Why should it really matter if the hands have begun their pull?

tjburk
August 13th, 2008, 06:32 PM
You're kidding, right? Jones does her kick before her pull. End of story. Arm separation is no pull. And even so, there's no way a judge is going to be able to distinguish in .12 of a second what came first. That's beyond way to close to call. They're either both in the wrong, or both in the right. A rule that hinges on .12 of a second is unworkable.

But I will check this on my DVR tonight...

Arm separation is definitely part of the pull.....most people start their pull by going outward! That is the start of the pull.....which is one of the main reasons why this rule is so hard to enforce......you have to be absolutely sure of what you saw before you call it....and remember....they don't have the luxury of slo-mo or any video for that matter....

hofffam
August 13th, 2008, 06:54 PM
I do not see how an official can watch a dolphin kick at the same time they are watching the hands. They are 6 feet apart in real life - not 30 inches like they are on a TV monitor.

It is in the field of view of an official but they can't focus on both at the same time.

tjburk
August 13th, 2008, 07:07 PM
And there in lies one of the biggest problems with this rule....

dclaryjr
August 13th, 2008, 08:35 PM
Arm separation is definitely part of the pull....

One of the points of emphasis in the last official's clinic I attended was that the separation of the hands does not necessarily indicate the start of the pull. Another point that can make this hard to call. I have made this call, but when you are officiating at the LSC level, and usually trying to watch four lanes at once, it has to be very obvious to call on the start.

Allen Stark
August 13th, 2008, 10:14 PM
I am sorry Kitajima has what certainly appears to be an illegal(but hard to call) kick as he really is a warrior and doesn't need to cheat to win.At least he is not obviously doing 2 dolphins.I have a solution to the rule,no dolphin kicks,but you could do as many strokes as you want underwater up to 15M(but no pulls past the waist.)
By the way,if my knowledge of Japanese is right,his first name,Kosuke,is pronounced "Koos'kay" not the way Rowdy(or Brendan) pronounce it.

knelson
August 13th, 2008, 11:13 PM
By the way,if my knowledge of Japanese is right,his first name,Kosuke,is pronounced "Koos'kay" not the way Rowdy(or Brendan) pronounce it.

I'm no expert, but aren't all the vowels long in Japanese? I thought it would be more like "Koze-kay."

smontanaro
August 13th, 2008, 11:21 PM
I'm no expert, but aren't all the vowels long in Japanese? I thought it would be more like "Koze-kay."

That's pretty much how the Cubs announcers pronounce Kosuke Fukudome's name, though with more of an 's' and less of a 'z' sound.

Skip

pwolf66
August 13th, 2008, 11:28 PM
What a great swim for Kitajima. Gold in both distances, you have to respect that. I still have problems with his pullouts but apparently FINA doesn't and in the end, that's all that matters.

breastroker
August 13th, 2008, 11:34 PM
I have a problem with rules that are inherently difficult to enforce. I wasn't
on the pool deck but man this has to be hard to judge from the deck. The speed, the turbulence, bubbles, distance between hands and feet, and glare would make it a huge challenge.

Any good official (and not corrupt) can make these calls easily. This is NOT a huge challenge. Well maybe to their conscience.


I would hate to see the day when we require slo-mo underwater instant replay to judge all the races.

Never happen, would show the enept judges up. Then they would have to give up the patronage system.



Why couldn't the rule say one dolphin kick anytime you want it before you surface? Why should it really matter if the hands have begun their pull

As one great breaststroker said, THIS AINT BUTTERFLY. That is why anyone who has swum this stroke HATES this new rule.

If Kitajima did two underwater strokes off the dive, the FINA GODS would change the rule "so long as he didn't go over 15 meters.

So many here don't realize what it means to be a FINA GOD and the POWER and LUXURIES that come with being a FINA GOD. Like in the 2004 USA Olympic Trials, REQUIRING 5 STAR hotels for their entourage! All paid by USA Swimming.

tjburk
August 13th, 2008, 11:37 PM
Got to say I agree....let Breaststroke stay Breaststroke....

breastroker
August 13th, 2008, 11:42 PM
I have said many times before, Kitajima has the best technique EVER.

He could win without cheating.

Better technique, as in swimming with your head underwater EVERY stroke in streamline, allows him to be less tired than the other swimmers. In each stroke cycle, his quick feet and quick hands allows him to spend almost 2 tenths of a second longer in streamline than his competitors. Haven't seen the finals yet (West Coast NBC Sucks) but I would expect about 12-14 strokes per length.

tjburk
August 13th, 2008, 11:49 PM
Yeah, I am in New Mexico right now....and the time is off here too. I wish they would go back to the no Dolphin Kick....seemed easier to enforce the turns without it. The natural undulation was allowed and most of the time pretty easy to tell when someone was throwing in a kick.

Allen Stark
August 14th, 2008, 12:53 AM
Curse you NBC.You advertise live but here on the West Coast you lie.Swimming World online has Kitajima's start time as .69.Thats REALLY fast off the blocks.I haven't seen the race yet(curse you again NBC) but his WR swim this year was the best breaststroke I have ever seen.

Allen Stark
August 14th, 2008, 01:19 AM
OK they finally showed it,and with a good underwater shot of his turn.I could stop action it and,for this turn anyway the downward dolphin started just after he separated his hands.(Rowdy evidently thought this was perfect form.)

breastroker
August 14th, 2008, 01:33 AM
Finally saw the final. I really like Rikards stroke, his first 100 technique was almost as good as Kitajima. But his stroke totally fell apart the second hundred.

NBC isn't putting a lot of underwater views, but the one shown clearly shows Kitajima dolphining BEFORE the start of the pulldown.

Kitajima keeps the same stroke and pace through the 200. If people want to learn to swim breaststroke, watch Kitajima. Literally a fast scull, kick and glide with your head underwater for a one count.

Allen Stark
August 14th, 2008, 10:41 AM
I'm no expert, but aren't all the vowels long in Japanese? I thought it would be more like "Koze-kay."
No. as I understand it The U after the S is a place holder to represent a slight pause of an "uh",hence the apostrophe in my pronunciation.

hammr7
August 15th, 2008, 06:05 PM
One of the points of emphasis in the last official's clinic I attended was that the separation of the hands does not necessarily indicate the start of the pull. Another point that can make this hard to call. I have made this call, but when you are officiating at the LSC level, and usually trying to watch four lanes at once, it has to be very obvious to call on the start.

Trust me, this call is not easy at the start, mainly because the officials have to walk up to their positions after the swimmers leave the blocks. I can promise you that the official's response time is a bit slower than the swimmers response time. Unless the officials are completely focused on looking for this foul it is easy to overlook. In the past (pre-butterfly kick) the main foul would be either a scissor kick (easy to call) or surfacing after the start of the second pull (more difficult, but there is plenty of time). On the flip side, since the swimmer is moving away, the officials have a clear view of both the hands and feet within a fairly narrow viewing angle. Subsequent laps should be a bit easier, since the turn officials are in position and have only one lane responsibility.

Separation of the hands, as I stated earlier, is not the initiation of the pull. Initiation of the "propulsive" action is the start of the pull. So the hands need to be actually pulling water, not drifting. And since the swimmer is moving forward, allowing the hands to float towards the body would not, at least in theory, signal initiation of the pull. This is why holding the hands in front is not the start of a pull. This is why merely spreading the hands is not the start of the pull. In fact most swimmers will separate the hands to their widest point, and then turn them inward and start pulling water.

In the USA, all officials are taught that initiation of the downward butterfly kick before the initiation of the first pull is an automatic DQ. This is a result of direct guidance from FINA. US Swimming is, for all intents and purposes, FINA regulations. There may be months of clarifications to make sure that the US technical specifications and interpretations match both the letter and the spirit of the FINA rules, but the goal of US Swimming (and YMCA swimming, and hopefully NCAA swimming in the near future) is to be completely consistent with FINA.

The problem is that now some world class swimmers are initiating the butterfly kick before initiating the first arm pull. And many lesser swimmers, seeing the success, will start doing the same. In the US, barring a FINA rule change or "clarification", and a corresponding US Swimming update, these swimmers will be DQ'ed. Because the current US clarifications leave no room for doubt.

As an official, all I want is a consistent set of rules that can be uniformly applied. As a trainer, I'll figure out how to best prepare other officials to make the correct calls. That is why this situation needs to be addressed. It is obvious that FINA and US Swimming are currently not on the same page.

hammr7
August 15th, 2008, 06:41 PM
I have a problem with rules that are inherently difficult to enforce.

It is surprising how much easier a rule is to enforce once you realize it is being violated and focus on it. But it shows how rules get pushed to the limit by athletes. Originally the butterfly kick was AFTER the arm pull. Once the rule clarifications made it absolutely legal, some swimmers decided it would work better during the arm pull. Based upon the 2006 clarifications they encountered no resistance from officials. Now some feel it is best just before the arm pull. Swimmers will always try to gain the advantage at whatever limits are allowed. I think that FINA foolishly felt that allowing the butterfly stroke would end the controversy. Instead, it has merely replaced one dilemma with another.


I would hate to see the day when we require slo-mo underwater instant replay to judge all the races.

In swimming this would be a big problem, so the compromise (if there is one) will likely be a modification to make the officiating easier. Or maybe FINA will decide to leave everything alone, allowing the swimmers to try and get away with whatever they can.


Why couldn't the rule say one dolphin kick anytime you want it before you surface? Why should it really matter if the hands have begun their pull?

When the butterfly kick was "legalized" there were arguments made that the downward butterfly was a logical transition to optimize getting the legs into a proper position for the intitial breastroke kick, in effect an initial stage to the initial kick. If you allow the butterfly kick before the first arm pull you are messing with the very essence of the breast stroke.

Breaststroke is the only cycle stroke, defined as an arm pull followed by a leg kick. The regulations state this is the required order. To allow a kick first, any kind of kick, is messing with the basic tenet of the stroke. And since the downward butterfly kick is optional, you create potential problems for those who don't utilize it. If a kick is allowed before the first pull, and the swimmer doesn't want to do the butterfly kick, can they do a breastroke kick (or some other kick) instead. If not, why not.

LindsayNB
August 15th, 2008, 07:15 PM
Hammr7: Is an outward scull considered propulsive?

dclaryjr
August 15th, 2008, 07:31 PM
As an official, all I want is a consistent set of rules that can be uniformly applied.

Amen!


It is obvious that FINA and US Swimming are currently not on the same page.I wonder if what we are seeing in the Olympics is representative of what is being called outside the US, or if it's just a case of officials being very hesitant to "make waves" (pun intended) on a big stage. I'm also reading a UK based forum where people are saying if they made the stroke the way Kitajima does, they'd be DQ'd.

It's too bad we only got to send two officials :-)

Midas
August 15th, 2008, 07:59 PM
Please don't DQ American swimmers for something that the rest of the world gets to do! I really hope they fix this interpretation to allow a single butterfly kick before, during or after the pulldown. Hopefully that would be clear enough!

LindsayNB
August 15th, 2008, 11:23 PM
Please don't DQ American swimmers for something that the rest of the world gets to do! I really hope they fix this interpretation to allow a single butterfly kick before, during or after the pulldown. Hopefully that would be clear enough!

The rule was changed because the officials couldn't distinguish whether the natural body movement during pulldown was a kick or not. If you let them kick anywhere else then they just start to push that again but now with two kicks.

They should just give up and drop breaststroke altogether. Failing that, admit that officials can't see underwater and let them do what they want down there as long as they surface by 15m and are doing breaststroke the rest of the way. All the WRs will be broken, people like that.

:rolleyes:

beluga
August 15th, 2008, 11:33 PM
Trust me, this call is not easy at the start, mainly because the officials have to walk up to their positions after the swimmers leave the blocks. I can promise you that the official's response time is a bit slower than the swimmers response time.

Unless the officials are completely focused on looking for this foul it is easy to overlook.

In the past (pre-butterfly kick) the main foul would be either a scissor kick (easy to call) or surfacing after the start of the second pull (more difficult, but there is plenty of time). On the flip side, since the swimmer is moving away, the officials have a clear view of both the hands and feet within a fairly narrow viewing angle. Subsequent laps should be a bit easier, since the turn officials are in position and have only one lane responsibility.



At this level of swimming, wouldn't the butterfly kick(s) be what the officials would be focusing on? Haven't seen any elite swimmers flutter kick to the surface or stop to adjust their goggles like age groupers sometimes do.

breastroker
August 15th, 2008, 11:48 PM
The rule was changed because the officials couldn't distinguish whether the natural body movement during pulldown was a kick or not

WRONG, spoken like a breaststroke hater. I know a former World Record holder who got DQd several times in the 80's due to pulling too hard on the pulldown, causing his legs to react similiar to a dolphin, but from the hips and not the knees. And guess what, US officials saw it just fine. Many other instances of DQs.

It is obvious these "Olympic" officials have been told to look the other way.

There was one other instance where a japanese breaststroker broke the rules with his "butterfly" like kick. But it was the Olympics and he had the fastest time, so they did NOT DQ him.

Who can call the year and name of this other cheat?

LindsayNB
August 16th, 2008, 12:03 AM
WRONG, spoken like a breaststroke hater.

Now now, don't get mean, I was mostly kidding. What's your theory on why FINA changed the rule?

dclaryjr
August 16th, 2008, 12:15 AM
Now now, don't get mean, I was mostly kidding. What's your theory on why FINA changed the rule?

I think it was a combination of what you and Wayne have said. Training films for officials do point out that some breaststrokers have a butterfly-like motion that can be mistaken for a downward kick. But the real impetus for the rule change was our boy Katijima's kick in the last olympics. FINA caved.

breastroker
August 16th, 2008, 12:16 AM
As I have said before, FINA gangs up on the USA EVERY chance they get.

Powerhouses such as Tunsia and Mongolia have more power in FINA than the USA does.

Breaststrokers don't kid about the rules. They have been DQd too many times.

Myself, been DQd once in my life for my fast start. I looked at the tape, and did not beat the gun. At one time and many pounds ago I had a great start.

As it has been said "This isn't BUTTERFLY".

Hey Canada is doing pretty good. Not quite like 1984 and their Golds, but best in many years. And England has been amazing. Same for France.

dclaryjr
August 16th, 2008, 12:23 AM
At this level of swimming, wouldn't the butterfly kick(s) be what the officials would be focusing on? Haven't seen any elite swimmers flutter kick to the surface or stop to adjust their goggles like age groupers sometimes do.

I think that's a good point. With only one lane to watch, and I would imagine with good lighting that didn't produce a lot of glare, an official should be able to see this. If not on the start, then on the turns for sure.

M_Tyson
August 16th, 2008, 05:37 PM
....

Separation of the hands, as I stated earlier, is not the initiation of the pull. Initiation of the "propulsive" action is the start of the pull. So the hands need to be actually pulling water, not drifting. And since the swimmer is moving forward, allowing the hands to float towards the body would not, at least in theory, signal initiation of the pull. This is why holding the hands in front is not the start of a pull. This is why merely spreading the hands is not the start of the pull. In fact most swimmers will separate the hands to their widest point, and then turn them inward and start pulling water.

This makes sense, but is going to be hard to judge. It is definitely the case for me that the propulsive part of my stroke happens within a couple of inches of my arms separating. However, this interpretation means that while the hands are still overlapped but are being separated, the stroke hasn't started.

Now for the other tough part of this call, when does the downward dolphin start? If you look closely at a swimmer like Kitajima, you see these parts to the downward undulation of the dolphin kick.
The hips start downward (relative to where they were). The feet are still rising.
The knees start downward but the legs are still bending and are still going upwards
The knees are going downward and the legs are maximally bent, so the feet are going downward because the knees are going down.
The legs begin to be straightened, and the feet are going downward rapidly.From the surface, it is probably nearly impossible to detect parts 1&2. But part 3 should be visible because you see the feet drop away from the surface (this may be 6 to 10"). Part 4 is the most visible.




As an official, all I want is a consistent set of rules that can be uniformly applied. As a trainer, I'll figure out how to best prepare other officials to make the correct calls. That is why this situation needs to be addressed. It is obvious that FINA and US Swimming are currently not on the same page.

As a swimmer, all I want is a consistent set of rules that are uniformly applied so that no one is given a (possibly perceived) advantage. Few things anger me more than obeying the rules as I understand them and to see someone knowingly violating the rules with intent to benefit by that violation, and being successful. What does anger me more is when that swimmer repeatedly does this and doesn't get DQed over multiple international competitions.

(It may be that officials warned Kitajima as the last swim for which I've seen underwater video did not violate this rule. Or, maybe they were told to watch for this violation, and word then got to Kitajima that they were looking for it.)

hammr7
August 18th, 2008, 09:46 AM
Hammr7: Is an outward scull considered propulsive?

If done by the book, an outward scull would not be considered an initiation of the propulsive phase. For anyone unfamiliar, the outward scull is designed as an optimal way to bring the arms from recovery to the start position for the inward scull, which would be the propulsive phase. In a "textbook" outward scull the elbows remain locked, and the hands are angled outward to efficiently cut through the water, rather than pull it. As such, the outward scull moves the arms to "their widest point", which is one of the usual descriptions of when a pull begins. The outward scull is more energetic than simply allowing the hands to separate.

But many swimmers who initiate an outward scull don't allow full separation of the arms before turning the hands inward and / or bending the elbows. As soon as a swimmer performs either of these actions they have usually initiated a propulsive phase. At a risk of oversimplifying, if the complete arm pull (and recovery) is in a triangular configuration, then the swimmer is using an outward scull, and the "outward" component would probably not be propulsive. As the arm stroke and recovery becomes more circular, the earlier the propulsive phase is typically initiated. As stated above, some swimmers begin pulling water almost immediately after the hands separate.

hammr7
August 18th, 2008, 10:38 AM
Now for the other tough part of this call, when does the downward dolphin start? If you look closely at a swimmer like Kitajima, you see these parts to the downward undulation of the dolphin kick.
The hips start downward (relative to where they were). The feet are still rising.
The knees start downward but the legs are still bending and are still going upwards
The knees are going downward and the legs are maximally bent, so the feet are going downward because the knees are going down.
The legs begin to be straightened, and the feet are going downward rapidly.From the surface, it is probably nearly impossible to detect parts 1&2. But part 3 should be visible because you see the feet drop away from the surface (this may be 6 to 10"). Part 4 is the most visible.



For all practical purposes, no hip action is ever going to be construed as the start of a kick. So you can be an underwater Elvis, and as long as your arm, leg and head motions are compliant you'll be OK.

In your multi-step scenario, the dolphin kick should first be recognized by the downward motion of the knees (#2). This is where your description differences the action from either streamlining or a normal breaststroke kick. The practical problem, alluded to earlier, is which official sees what, and when.

On the initial dive, a turn official might not note the knees starting downward until the legs followed (#3). But the turn official should easily note the arm - leg synchronization.

A stroke official might note the butterfly kick immediately as the knees start down (#2), but might not as easily note the synchronization between the leg kick with the arm pull, especially on the first stroke.

I'm assuming that the stroke and turn officials had overlapping jurisdictions, (turn officials last stroke in and first stroke out, stroke officials wall-to-wall) but this might not have been the case. Even if it was the case, the stroke judges might have a difficult time making the dolphin kick [Edit: The dolphin kick - arm pull synchronization] call.

Stroke officials are in their best position to make calls when they are walking slightly behind the swimmers they are observing. But until the swimmers get ahead of them, they might have trouble noting a breaststoke synchronization issue, such as the one discussed here. Also consider that each stroke official has to equally split their observation between two swimmers. Finally, since the stroke officials are on the sides of the pool, they can have a bit more difficulty with center lanes, especailly with a 10 lane pool.

hammr7
August 18th, 2008, 12:36 PM
At this level of swimming, wouldn't the butterfly kick(s) be what the officials would be focusing on? Haven't seen any elite swimmers flutter kick to the surface or stop to adjust their goggles like age groupers sometimes do.

Surprisingly, at all levels of swimming its often stupid things that swimmers do that lead to DQ's. Granted, at the Olympics you are more likely to see a false start or an early relay start. But I've seen experienced swimmers do the occasional basic screw-up, even at National events. And as an official you are supposed to watch everything.

My guess for the breaststroke start is that the officials were focusing on the feet and legs, to make sure there was only one downward butterfly kick, followed by the breaststroke kick. They could then turn their attention to the arms to make sure the swimmer surfaced before the "propulsive" phase of the second arm cycle. Breaststroke, as a true cycle stroke, allows officials the opportunity to concentrate a bit more on specifics of the cycle components. In this case, however, focusing as they did cost some of their ability to note the synchronization aspects between the initial arm pull and the initial leg kick.

breastroker
August 18th, 2008, 05:29 PM
The stupidest swim ever goes to Milorad Cavic in the 100 fly.

He did several things my youngest swimmer knows how to do.

1) When finishing fly or breaststroke, dive and get your hands and head underwater. You are faster underwater that at the waters surface.

2) Extend the hands forwards, and above all else, keep the head down until AFTER you touch with both hands. There were many many bad examples of winners looking up before the touch. They could have lost if the race was closer.

3) Butterfliers should always KICK and continue kicking into the wall. Same for free and back. You don't glide and do nothing, KICK KICK KICK!!!!!

4) Always touch the touchpads underwater, they are more sensitive there, and don't touch on the top of the pads!

Cavic would have changed history by just one more kick. That being said, winners (Phelps) makes their own luck.

breastroker
August 18th, 2008, 05:42 PM
Swimming needs to get into the 21st Century. Did everyone see all the cameras? Not only are there underwater cameras that don't miss anything, there are high speed cameras over head, and just beneath the starting blocks. Far more that at any baseball game, or football game.

Allow for instant replay, to get rid of the cheaters like Kitajima and Bossini. Once they start getting DQd, the other cheats will go away.

We ALL need to play by the same rules. No drug cheats, no rule cheats.

Allen Stark
August 18th, 2008, 08:22 PM
[QUOTE=breastroker;

There was one other instance where a japanese breaststroker broke the rules with his "butterfly" like kick. But it was the Olympics and he had the fastest time, so they did NOT DQ him.

Who can call the year and name of this other cheat?[/QUOTE]

Minoru Taguchi,1972.He was DQd in several pre-Olympic meets.The joke was that if he was behind going into the turns he'd dolphin kick until he was ahead and then start his pullout(don't know if that was true as I only saw his Olympic swim.) He was the first to do a "wave" type stroke so he wasn't all bad.

Ian Smith
August 18th, 2008, 10:31 PM
That being said, winners (Phelps) makes their own luck.

Reminds me of Gary Player's observation: "the more I practice, the luckier I get".

Not only have many wall finishes been bad but why are people looking out for their opponents in the last 25m of a race??? - breathing on their wrong side etc. Don't you want to leave it all in the pool and just give it your all to the wall with a good touch? (a la Britta Steffen in the 50&100 free)

The only guy who could possibly afford to to check out his opposition in the last length is Phelps so he can slow down and rest himself for his next race (he knew not to do this in the 100 fly).

The level of competition at these games have highlighted the importance of getting all the fine details right.

breastroker
August 18th, 2008, 11:05 PM
Allen,

I thought Nagy said the inspiration was for the wave was Wilkie. The coaches of the world, not just the USA were upset by the cheat.

Want to see a great start, watch videos of Wilkies start. Not even a pancake, an actual PIKE!!!

3strokes
August 18th, 2008, 11:14 PM
No. as I understand it The U after the S is a place holder to represent a slight pause of an "uh",hence the apostrophe in my pronunciation.

This URL gives audio pronunciation of Judo terms. It can help
with better "understanding" why some Japanese names are not pronounced the way they're written (Remember "Shogun" the book and the TV Mini-series?).

Anyway this is fun:
http://www.judoinfo.com/terminology.htm

Allen Stark
August 19th, 2008, 05:32 PM
Allen,

I thought Nagy said the inspiration was for the wave was Wilkie. The coaches of the world, not just the USA were upset by the cheat.

Want to see a great start, watch videos of Wilkies start. Not even a pancake, an actual PIKE!!!
Remember Wilke was 1976,Taguchi was 1972.Watch the 1972 video of his Olympic swim and see what you think.

dclaryjr
August 19th, 2008, 08:46 PM
Allow for instant replay, to get rid of the cheaters like Kitajima and Bossini. Once they start getting DQd, the other cheats will go away.

They did have cameras for judging purposes at the trials but they couldn't be used if an official with proper jurisdiction didn't make a call.

hammr7
August 20th, 2008, 04:13 PM
This is a slight tangent, but care to discuss this more? The topic of incomplete stroke cycles at the wall has come up before. It's my understanding that an incomplete cycle is OK at the wall (e.g., you can pull without following with a kick going into the turn only).

Sorry I didn't respond to this sooner, but I missed the request. It is perfectly acceptable to have an incomplete breaststroke cycle going into the wall. You just have to make sure that you obey all normal stroke rules.

My comment was within the context of a claim that Kitajima had begun his "pull" while his hands were still together, or by marginally separating the hands while they were fully extended in front of his body. Within that context I was arguing that defining Kitajima's arm position as a start of a "pull", to justify what he did as compliant with existing rules, would have unintended consequences. At the wall end, there are two obvious "consequences" that might result in a DQ.

One of these involves the requirement that the head must be above the surface during some part of any complete or INCOMPLETE stoke cycle. If simply moving the hands apart from each other (while extended in front of the body) is defined as initiating a pull, then any swimmer who lunges to the wall, and submerges their head during that lunge, would be DQed if they subsequently moved their hands apart at the touch. There are many top swimmers who end up with their head submerged during the lunge, and who move their hands apart for the touch (putting them in proper position for a quick turn, and giving officials an easier time observing the touch).

The second complication would technically be a cycle violation. Again, asume that a pull is defined as initiating as soon as the hands separate.

Consider that many swimmers approach the wall having last performed a pull, or in incomplete portion of a pull. Their "pull" recovery includes a lunge with their arms toward the wall. Again, the lunge begins with the hands together, and the arms separate at the touch. The swimmer doesn't bother trying to complete the cycle with a kick. Under the present regulations everything is fine. But if a "pull" is redefined to start with the separation of the hands, then the same swimmer has technically performed two consequative pulls (one complete or partial leading to the lunge, one incomplete that started with the hand separation) without an interveneing kick. Under this definition the swimmer should immediately be DQed.

Lump
August 20th, 2008, 04:21 PM
Consider this thread as "7 pages why I hate Breaststroke"! :lmao:

Not that I really needed more reasons...hated it since I was 7 and still hate it at 37!:drown:

knelson
August 20th, 2008, 06:23 PM
At the wall end, there are two obvious "consequences" that might result in a DQ.

Thanks for explaining this. It makes sense. It's sort of a "you can't have it both ways" argument. If the dolphin kick is allowed because any movement of the hands apart constitutes the start of the pull, then odds are you could be DQed somewhere else in the race (last stroke into the turns and finish) for starting your pull.

LindsayNB
August 21st, 2008, 03:40 PM
I'm not sure it follows that if a pull starts with a separation of the hands then every separation of the hands is the start of a pull.

hammr7
August 21st, 2008, 05:52 PM
I'm not sure it follows that if a pull starts with a separation of the hands then every separation of the hands is the start of a pull.

Remember that much of this discussion is based on a claim that Katajima was legal during his semifinal dive, on the premise that he began his arm stroke while his hands were still ahead of his body, either together or slightly separated.

I am firmly of the opinion that Kitajima was illegal on his semifinal dive, since I do not believe he initiated his initial arm stroke before his dolphin kick. I contend that maintaining the hands in front of the swimmer, either clasped together or slightly separated, does not constitute initiation of the arm stroke. My latest post was merely pointing out unintended consequences if the simple act of separating the arms was considered the initiation of the arm stroke.

If you check the thread, you will see that the proper interpretation of when an arm stroke begins has everything to do with when a swimmer actually begins to pull water. This requires that the hands are grabbing water and moving from the extended recovery position toward the torso, and typically involves the hands being turned inward and / or the elbows bending (especially if the stroke is using the outward and inward sculls). This may occur almost immediately after the hands separate, or it may not happen until the hands separate to their widest point. But it never happens with the arms fully extended in front of the swimmer and the hands together in the glide position.