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jim thornton
July 24th, 2003, 10:01 PM
A quick dual comment about synchronized swimming:

A) it's ridiculous in so many ways, from the constant smiling and ultra enunciated, Prussian body language, to the nearly hissy-fit splashing frenzy and nose clips that make these women look like painter Wilhem De Kooning's weasel women models

B) despite this, the top practitioners of the sport make it also one of the most amazing displays of human talent you can imagine

Did any of you see the Martin Short/Harry Shearer male synchronized swimming spoof on SNL? A classic. This shows how easy it is to lampoon the sport.

On the other hand, I watched some of the FINA coverage of SS last week, and I am still in awe that our species is capable of execting such maneurvers in such perfect synchrony.

Utterly unbeliveable. Maybe USMS should have a synchronized swimming competition at one of the national championships. If they open this up to any one who wants to do it, are there any 50-54 year old males who would like to form a team with me? I think we should be allowed to use snorkels, though. Or scuba tanks.

cinc3100
July 25th, 2003, 12:05 AM
Sychrozied swimming like diving is more difficult than just plain swimming. Many sychro swimmers have to swim yardage. Them they have to do dance practice and then they have to put their routines in sinc. And they have to hold their breath underwater for a few mintues that would cause many of us to passed out. I try those postions as a teenager and couldn't done them. As for Bill Mays, I think he has guts, many boys quite the sport . I remember back in high school, a sychro swimmer that l that swam a 24.00, 50 yard freestyle, and in those days the American record was around 23. So, just because women like Sychroized swimming better than men doesn't mean you need to put it down. Actually, I enjoy watching the ladies water polo team and that's probably because I went to high school in California where people do waterpolo. Sychroized swimming is popular in Arizona, we have summer teams and just because the east coast doesn't do it , you shouldn't put it down.

nyswim
July 25th, 2003, 08:34 AM
synchronized swimming is right up there with synchronized diving or whatever they call it. welcome to the circus swimming.

laineybug
July 25th, 2003, 09:41 AM
syncro swimming is to traditional swimming

as

figure skating is to speed skating

its a hell of a lot harder than it looks and combines art with sports and athletics.

lefty
July 25th, 2003, 09:59 AM
When you point out the fact that many sycro swimmers have to do yards to stay in shape, doesn't that prove that 'regular' swimming is the more difficult sport? I do totally agree that it is way more difficult sport than it looks, but come on!

jerrycat
July 25th, 2003, 10:01 AM
Without a doubt, syncho swimming requires a talented athlete. However, it makes me crack up, and watch in amazement at the same time.

I laugh and gasp--thinking: that looks so silly! How in the world do they do that (gasp)? it's a miracle! Just one of the dichotamies of life! ;)

Have a great day!

nyswim
July 25th, 2003, 10:05 AM
reminds me of the gymnastics events that use balls and streamers. personally think they should call it water ballet and send it away.

cinc3100
July 25th, 2003, 11:10 AM
Well, sychro diving is difficult because you have to be in synch with your partner. And I notice that most of the males are against sychro swimming. Swimming is the easiest of the 4 sports. Anyway, can learn to swim but do water moves in sychro swimming or learn dives or play polo is more difficult.

lefty
July 25th, 2003, 11:26 AM
Synchro Swimming difficult? You know how many 8 year olds do a summer sault in the pool on your average July day? About a million! Still wating to see an 8 year old do a 200 fly though.

kaelonj
July 25th, 2003, 11:35 AM
Can't say I'm a Synchro fan, but I can recognize that to be good at their sport takes determination,skill and hard work, they're definitely athletes. About fifteen years ago the US national team was at the college for some practice and photo ops during our water polo practice, and those ladies were studly ! I would liken the synchro routine to swimming a 400 IM where you only breath at the walls (25m/yrd pool - effort and breath control).
The Short/Shearer SNL skit is a classic, if you use that as your measuring stick then I guess I can assume your impression of lifeguards (the Jim Carrey lifeguard skit is another all time favorite classic).

laineybug
July 25th, 2003, 12:15 PM
Lefty....

you will need a couple of your friends who aren't afraid of looking silly: get out in the deep end of the pool... where no one can touch bottom and yall just try to float on your backs, in a circle with your feet touching, sculling slightly to stay in one place... then try some simple move like bringing your feet together and back out to meet the feet of the person next to you... I bet you, you won't be able to do it.

Shaky
July 25th, 2003, 12:52 PM
When I was young I was in a jazz band. My dad came to one of our concerts, in which we had a guest trumpet player. During one of the trumpet player's solos, he went into a sort of freeform style in which he dramatically bent the notes in a very exaggerated manner. To some of the musicians, the guy was demonstrating a master of his instrument far beyond any of us. To others, he sounded like a moose cow in heat.

After the concert, my dad said, "I enjoyed it, but what was that trumpet player supposed to be doing?"

"Oh, that was great!" I said. "You didn't like it?"

He thought for a minute and said, "It's like this. While I appreciate the skill it takes to make those sounds, I would prefer not to have to hear them. I understand why you were impressed with it, but it was offensive to my ears."

That's about the way I feel about synchronized swimming. I appreciate the skill required of those ladies, but the sillier looking aspects of it can be somewhat offensive to the eyes.

lizzie
July 25th, 2003, 01:09 PM
I've always said that the most fit athletes were synchro swimmers - they are underwater doing difficult maneuvers for far longer than most swimmers can. (Most of us still breath out of our turns because we lack the capacity to swim without oxygen). They also have amazing strength - they are able to propel either their entire torso out of the water or their entire lower half. Most swimmers have difficulty treading water with their arms above the surface.

BUT - it is really silly to debate this. We don't have to belittle other sports to make us look or feel better. Most people who do not swim think that it is pretty silly swimming up and down over a black line for hours a week and then racing just to beat a personal best- especially those swimmers who are not and will never be Olympic swimmers. They view us doing this for recreation - not as athletes. We need to work to change this view of our sport rather than spending energy degrading other aquatic sports.

aquageek
July 25th, 2003, 01:32 PM
Syncro swimmers are the ones that didn't make the swimming or diving teams. Polo players are the best swimmers who also like to beat people up while swimming.

Swimmers don't like divers due to the weird small towels they use. Swimmers don't like polo players but respect them out of fear they will whizz one of those balls as us while swimming laps. Polo players know this fear factor and date the syncro swimmers. I don't know if the women polo players date the male synchro swimmers but I doubt it strongly.

So, in summary, this is all pointless rambling because hockey players are the most fit athletes because they do syncro swimming on a frozen pool.

Here's the real question. Why do the best swimmers tend to wear the body suits (i.e. Thorpe) but the best divers wear the smallest, most undersized Speedos they can find?

jerrycat
July 25th, 2003, 01:41 PM
I think it's just awesome to be involved in things period. those guys flying through the air on dirt bikes seem crazy to me--but you know what? they're doing something athletic, and sticking to it. I can appreciate that. Same with us, same with syncho swimmers. In this day and age, where 60% of the population is seriously overweight--anybody doing activity gets kudos in my book.

All I know is that if I tried to suspend upsidedown in the water while doing swirling leg kicks, I would choke and sink to the bottom of the pool. Those that can do it--horay for you! Just don't get upset if I laugh at the activity and gasp in amazement at the same time.

And, if you're flying through the air on a dirt bike while doing a handstand on the handle bars--yes, I would think that you've got to be in good shape to do that--plus crazy in the brain.

It's all good :cool:

I think it's fun we can talk about our opinions.

nyswim
July 25th, 2003, 02:20 PM
dirt bike riders are just like equestrians-along for the ride while something else does the work.

syncro is to swimming like sumo is to wrestling. sure it's a sport but what is the point.

aquageek you kill me. i was laughing out loud at your post!

Laura
July 25th, 2003, 02:36 PM
The 2004 Synchro Olympic Team has already been selected and they do their swim training with us at 6 AM at the International Swim Center in Santa Clara. After the masters workout they do pilates, weights, dance, and then about 6 more hours in the pool. They leave the pool around 7 PM. They are incredible athletes and I have the upmost respect for them---and they are FAST! I remember a comment PH Mullin (author of 'Gold in the Water') made one day at workout. 'Jeeze, first the tri's are beating me, now the synchro's.'