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okoban
February 9th, 2010, 03:49 PM
I want to write an article about the hypothetical grades in swimming.
There will be 6 grades: white-yellow-green-blue-red-black (like in karate:))
Would you help me to describe each grade?


For example, if a person knowing nothing about swimming started a course to learn it, he/she has white belt. When this person is able to do what, he/she will be yellow belt? Same goes for other belts.

learn to breath into the water
balanced body position in the water
able to adjust the pace to swim 15 minutes non-stop
training with pace clock
etc.
Waiting for your interesting comments.

SLOmmafan
February 9th, 2010, 06:16 PM
Well, USA swimming has their B, BB, A, AA, etc. It is all based on times, versus skills (though one assumes you must have the skill to swim the faster time).

A "belt" system could focus more on abilities then times, with those abilities being demonstated by certain accomplishments. For instance, you must be able to legally race a 50 of all four strokes to move up to a certain belt.

Perhaps moving to a "black belt" would require a person to swim a legal "brute squad" trio - 200 fly, 400 IM, and 1500/1650 free!

TexasAggies
February 10th, 2010, 01:27 PM
Hey, this sounds like fun! I know this is a masters forum, but that would be a great way to structure a learn-to-swim or precompetitive program.

Are you considering purely subjective advancements, like "balanced body position" or "efficient breathing" or more objective like "complete a 25 butterfly"? Or some combination of both for each level?

I would think that to advance to a yellow belt, it would be completing a 25 yard swim with some semblance of a freestyle motion, and floating on your stomach and back for 10+ seconds. The comfort to float face up and face down is a huge thing for most people, especially adults not accustomed to the water, to get over. Once adults have mastered the floating and the 25 yard swim (even if it's not perfect) their improvement really begins to accelerate rapidly, and that's why I think it would make a great first advancement.

Karen Duggan
February 10th, 2010, 01:45 PM
I didn't learn to swim until I was almost 10 (Red Cross Program) and then I went on to the swim team.

I do remember my mom taking my brother and I to "swim school" when I was really little. They had ribbons that said things like "10 yard kick and return to wall".

On my first swim team (I've only been on 2, due to a move, plus masters), I remember being really motivated to try to get the "Swimmer of the Week" patch for my jacket. Then they had AAA patches if you qualified for Far Westerns, etc. They also used to have a strip that would say:
10-un: (and then there was room for up to 5 stars)- The white stars were for A times, and the gold stars were for AA or better, and then I guess we got the AAA patch (that I mentioned above) after that.

In Masters I haven't been too big on the whole patch thing.

TexasAggies
February 10th, 2010, 02:16 PM
In Masters I haven't been too big on the whole patch thing.

Pssh, that's because adult swimmers are all into "intrinsic value" stuff. Pssh, who swims to feel warm and fuzzy? I swim for the hardware, baby!

The high school whose pool I coach club at uses an interesting system for their highschool swimmers. They have to achieve something before they get something. So, for example they have to do 10x100's on the 1:45 before they get their locker. They have to attend 90% of the practices for the first month before they get their team shirt. Etc, etc. Would be hard to equate to masters, but it seems like a great idea for the high school kids.

okoban
February 10th, 2010, 02:17 PM
Hi again; thanks for your valuable feedback.
30 years ago I attended a swim school too Karen. At that time, there were 4 categories: corals, dolphins, whales, swimmers :):)
In fact, I am thinking about this article for a couple of weeks time. I want to write something special.
I want to find some universal criteria that would fit to all ages (for masters only).
Criteria to determine the belt colors must not be only numerical, but on the other hand, if the criteria would be objective, we need some metrics.
I think we can start (white belt) from the scratch, a person can not float on the water without any assistance, starting a course is white belt.

TexasAggies recommendation seems logical: completing a 25 yard swim with some semblance of a freestyle motion, and floating on your stomach and back for 10+ seconds
SLOmmafan's recommendation can also fit to a certain belt: you must be able to legally race a 50 of all four strokes to move up to a certain belt.

Waiting for some more feedback :blush:

TexasAggies
February 10th, 2010, 03:00 PM
In Masters I haven't been too big on the whole patch thing. Pssh, that's because adult swimmers are all into "intrinsic value" stuff. Pssh, who swims to feel warm and fuzzy? I swim for the hardware, baby!

The high school whose pool I coach club at uses an interesting system for their highschool swimmers. They have to achieve something before they get something. So, for example they have to do 10x100's on the 1:45 before they get their locker. They have to attend 90% of the practices for the first month before they get their team shirt. Etc, etc. Would be hard to equate to masters, but it seems like a great idea for the high school kids.

Karen Duggan
February 10th, 2010, 03:12 PM
I don't know. I see a lot of older (60-plus) men and women who sport their USMS patches proudly.
:2cents:

Allen Stark
February 10th, 2010, 05:42 PM
Hey, this sounds like fun! I know this is a masters forum, but that would be a great way to structure a learn-to-swim or precompetitive program.

Are you considering purely subjective advancements, like "balanced body position" or "efficient breathing" or more objective like "complete a 25 butterfly"? Or some combination of both for each level?

I would think that to advance to a yellow belt, it would be completing a 25 yard swim with some semblance of a freestyle motion, and floating on your stomach and back for 10+ seconds. The comfort to float face up and face down is a huge thing for most people, especially adults not accustomed to the water, to get over. Once adults have mastered the floating and the 25 yard swim (even if it's not perfect) their improvement really begins to accelerate rapidly, and that's why I think it would make a great first advancement.
NO,not the floating.The only way I passed WSI in college was to wear the baggiest pants I could find and jump in just right so they filled with air.Now I am barely heavier than water,in HS and college I sank like a rock(as did most of the guys on the swim team.)

Couroboros
February 15th, 2010, 02:02 AM
ahhh, the belt system.

*recalls fond memories*

I used to do Karate from when I was a wee lad until I was about 13 or so. Never did become a black belt, for a number of reasons, but mainly for repeating disciplinary problems in and out of the dojo for which my shihan kept bumping me back down to white belt. I think the farthest I got was a green belt with a purple stripe? Or a purple with a green? Eh, those two colors anyway. Wouldn't have made black belt anyway since my shihan had some special rule that no one under 16 would get one.

And I actually recommend that rule for swimming. No one under 16 gets a black belt. Or a black speedo, more appropriately.

And keep the ranking system to the colors, too. Other dojos in my area used to give their students all sorts of badges and patches to put on their uniforms (actual word for them was pronounced "gees" with a hard g), until they became positively neurotic in their need for reward and validation. We always kicked their asses at tournaments, us in our solemnly blank white gees. Simplicity without clutter is the way more befitting of the Martial Arts.

Oh, and red should be above black.

edit: and obviously, moving ahead in the colors should be based primarily on two factors:

1.) times
2.) the coach's own input, perhaps more important than getting faster times, b/c this is the person that knows just what is the right challenge for his or her swimmer(s)

and no matter how fast a little pop tart gets, if he or she is not 16, no black!

ande
February 15th, 2010, 11:27 AM
don't some belt systems work up to Black belts then go up from there to a white belt for the highest level masters. plus when you swim often your belt will fade like a bleached worn out swim suit

you might want to follow swim faster faster Tip 13 Unconscious Mastery


Swim Faster Faster: Tip 13 Unconscious Mastery (http://www.usms.org/forums/showpost.php?p=34549&postcount=83)

The path to mastering swimming skills

1. Unconscious Incompetence
2. Conscious Incompetence
3. Conscious Competence
4. Unconscious Competence
5. Unconscious Mastery


1. Unconscious Incompetence
When we begin swimming, we're unskilled and we don't know what we need to do to become skilled. We're unaware that we're unskilled.

2. Conscious Incompetence
Next we're still unskilled, but at least now we're aware that we are and making efforts to improve.

3. Conscious Competence
We're improving our skills and we do them correctly when we concentrate on it.

4. Unconscious Competence
We've practiced our correct skills so much the've become a habit and we can do it with out thinking about it.

5. Unconscious Mastery
The athlete's skills are developed to the highest level, perfection.
He swims with grace speed and power without even thinking about it.

I encourage you to strive towards Unconscious Mastery of your swimming skills, and as you get closer, you will swim faster faster.

Ande



I want to write an article about the hypothetical grades in swimming.
There will be 6 grades: white-yellow-green-blue-red-black (like in karate:))
Would you help me to describe each grade?


For example, if a person knowing nothing about swimming started a course to learn it, he/she has white belt. When this person is able to do what, he/she will be yellow belt? Same goes for other belts.

learn to breath into the water
balanced body position in the water
able to adjust the pace to swim 15 minutes non-stop
training with pace clock
etc.
Waiting for your interesting comments.

LindsayNB
February 15th, 2010, 12:07 PM
The Red Cross used to have a color system back when I learned to swim, now they've got a numeric system. Although it has a lot of water safety mixed in I'm sure a lot of thought and experience went into it and you might find their progression useful for the early colors in your progression:

http://www.redcross.ca/article.asp?id=32242&tid=001

Have you decided on the top end of your scale? I.e. is a black belt an Olympic swimmer or just reasonably competent?

I like Ande's scale, I think I have achieved something approaching conscious competence in freestyle but am stuck at conscious incompetence with butterfly!

okoban
February 15th, 2010, 03:31 PM
Couroboros, I think I will need to add some metrics in it to make it rationalistic. Time and/or distance could be in. Thanks for your comments.
Ande, I will certainly embed your input in my article.They are great.
Lindsay, the link you posted is really interesting.There are certainly some very good descriptions I will use.
Thank you all, any more comments are more than welcome, it will be a great article:bliss:

orca1946
February 15th, 2010, 04:21 PM
I'll be on the black / A team please !