View Poll Results: Abide by FINA suit rules or Anything Goes for Masters?

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  • USMS should only allow FINA-legal suits

    55 76.39%
  • USMS should allow B70s and other suits FINA deems illegal

    17 23.61%
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Thread: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

  1. #1
    Very Active Member jim thornton's Avatar
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    FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Craig Lord's rather inflammatory article http://www.swimnews.com/News/view/6918 on the possibility that USMS will depart from FINA vis a vis allowed swim suits raises a fundamental issue:

    If masters swimming allows a more lenient policy regarding suit technology than FINA swimming, will this help or hurt our status in the swimming world?

    I love the high tech suits, and I think FINA has been boneheaded in many ways, but I personally think that the creation of a two-tier system--regular swimming and masters "handicapped" swimming--would be bad for our sport and only marginalize us in the world of athletics.

    If the choice comes down to two options--abide by FINA's suit rulings OR permit suits like the B70 for masters (if it is outlawed by FINA for "real" swimmers), which side would you support?

  2. #2
    Tough like cottage cheese
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    I voted for FINA rules but with the caveat that FINA creates a logical, consistent and comphensive testing and ratification process. Throwing darts at a dartboard does not count.

  3. #3
    CreamPuff
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    I see your points Jim. However, Masters already does not have drug testing. Aren't we "handicapped" anyway? As mentioned in previous discussions, I don't think it would be practical from an efficiency and $$$ perspective to have random drug tests performed all over the country.

    Along those lines, I don't feel that it's practical for me as an individual to be forced to buy a speedo suit (like the LZR or Pro) that costs $250 to $550 for a suit that will last around 5 swims just to be competitive. With the B70, it was more economical to pay $400 for a suit that would last 25 to 30 swims.

    Based on my times, I perform the same in a B70, Pro, or even FSII. How is it that Speedos are legal and B70s are now banned? How inconvenient for me to have to buy much more expensive product with a significantly shorter shelf life. I have trouble supporting Fina's ruling and buying speedo products at this point.
    Last edited by CreamPuff; June 9th, 2009 at 12:23 PM.

  4. #4
    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    In my opinion USMS must absolutely NOT diverge from FINA on this issue.

    Or, since FINA doesn't seem to know where they stand, let me revise this to say "not diverge from FINAs rules for non-masters swimming."
    Last edited by knelson; June 9th, 2009 at 12:48 PM.

  5. #5
    Stop silly posts
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Accept FINA's decision.

  6. #6
    Very Active Member Dolphin 2's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    As Iíve said many times before, the whole tech suit issue may be summed up like this:

    http://kcfac.kilgore.cc.tx.us/mobley...of%20worms.jpg

    Dolphin 2

  7. #7
    sǝssɐןb ɹǝʇʇǝq ʇǝb That Guy's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by knelson View Post
    In my opinion USMS must absolutely NOT diverge from FINA on this issue.
    Agreed.

  8. #8
    Wannabe Middle D. Swimmer qbrain's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    How many FINA unapproved suits do you think will be manufactured once FINA gets around to finalizing their list?
    Last edited by qbrain; June 9th, 2009 at 12:54 PM. Reason: reworded to be, well, english.

  9. #9
    Very Active Member ourswimmer's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by qbrain View Post
    How many FINA unapproved suits do you think will be manufactured once FINA gets around to finalizing their list?
    Very few. The marketing will change too. Just as thongs for men are marketed only to European beach-goers, and wetsuts to triathletes, there could be suits that have some utility in settings other than FINA-sanctioned competition and so stay on the market for those uses. But for a suit like, say, the Jaked 01, which would seem to have no real use outside top-level swimming competition, the potential market for it might end up being so small that they stop making it anyway.

    The legal issues here relating to anti-trust and unfair competition laws on a national and international scale could be fascinating.

  10. #10
    Very Active Member jim clemmons's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by CreamPuff View Post
    Along those lines, I don't feel that it's practical for me as an individual to be forced to buy a speedo suit (like the LZR or Pro) that costs $250 to $550 for a suit that will last around 5 swims just to be competitive. With the B70, it was more economical to pay $400 for a suit that would last 25 to 30 swims.

    Based on my times, I perform the same in a B70, Pro, or even FSII. How is it that Speedos are legal and B70s are now banned? How inconvenient for me to have to buy much more expensive product with a significantly shorter shelf life. I have trouble supporting Fina's ruling and buying speedo products at this point.
    I'm with Pufferuni on these points, however, I feel that the "25 to 30 swims" is understated. I have over 75 swims in mine, (equates to less than 4 dollars per swim) and it is still in primo condition. Not a hole or a marginal seam anywhere to be found. People should all swim in their suit of choice (or suit du jour if you have more than one choice available).
    Jim

  11. #11
    Very Active Member jim thornton's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    So for the pro-B70 contingent, assuming the LSR is legal and equally fast, it all comes down to cost, right?

    The B70 lets you do identical times over a much longer period of time.

    But won't B70 go back to the drawing board and come up with something that is both durable and LSR-like in speed and legality?

    And won't FINA then have to approve it, or risk lawsuits for unfair application of standards?

    I say there can only be one standard, otherwise the sport will bifurcate into the "real" and the "cheap old people need an advantage" categories, which will only cause enmity all around.

  12. #12
    sprint diva The Fortress's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton View Post
    So for the pro-B70 contingent, assuming the LSR is legal and equally fast, it all comes down to cost, right?

    The B70 lets you do identical times over a much longer period of time.

    But won't B70 go back to the drawing board and come up with something that is both durable and LSR-like in speed and legality?

    And won't FINA then have to approve it, or risk lawsuits for unfair application of standards?

    I say there can only be one standard, otherwise the sport will bifurcate into the "real" and the "cheap old people need an advantage" categories, which will only cause enmity all around.
    B70 is apparently already suing FINA, Jim.

    Ian's solution from the other thread is the best. Leave the B70 on the FINA list -- it's already been around for a year. Freeze the list at the already approved suits + B70 and take some time to develop rational tests with a scientific basis -- none of this "may trap air" nonsense. If they're going to take a suit off the list in the future pursuant to new standards, given some notice. If this scenario was followed, as some of us were discussing, this could induce competition from manufacturers, prices of the suits would drop, and durability would increase.

    Oh, I don't really agree that the B70 and the LZR are identical. I think, just MHO, that the LZR is faster for many. The Arena X-Glide and Jaked are even faster as they seem to be combo B70+LZR suits.

  13. #13
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    I don't think there is any question that USMS will follow FINA's rulings - once the list is finalized. My understanding is that USMS did not want to ban suits that are still being tested, so made the decision to maintain the status quo for now.
    Let's hope FINA issues the final ruling on suits on the 19th so we'll all know what we have to do to be legal.
    There is an interesting article on SWIMMING WORLD's website about all the unapproved suits at Japan's national championships.

  14. #14
    Very Active Member Michelina's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by jim thornton View Post
    Craig Lord's rather inflammatory article http://www.swimnews.com/News/view/6918 on the possibility that USMS will depart from FINA vis a vis allowed swim suits raises a fundamental issue:

    If masters swimming allows a more lenient policy regarding suit technology than FINA swimming, will this help or hurt our status in the swimming world?

    I love the high tech suits, and I think FINA has been boneheaded in many ways, but I personally think that the creation of a two-tier system--regular swimming and masters "handicapped" swimming--would be bad for our sport and only marginalize us in the world of athletics.

    If the choice comes down to two options--abide by FINA's suit rulings OR permit suits like the B70 for masters (if it is outlawed by FINA for "real" swimmers), which side would you support?
    Is there a reason why there can't just be one rule on the suits, then we don't have to worry about swimming in a USA meet or a USMS meet... better yet, then you wont miss out on Dara swimming in a USMS meet as she is an "elite" swimmer.
    "The water is your friend... you don't have to fight with water, just share the same spirit as the water, and it will help you move". Alexandr Popov

  15. #15
    CreamPuff
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by jim clemmons View Post
    I'm with Pufferuni on these points, however, I feel that the "25 to 30 swims" is understated. I have over 75 swims in mine, (equates to less than 4 dollars per swim) and it is still in primo condition. Not a hole or a marginal seam anywhere to be found. People should all swim in their suit of choice (or suit du jour if you have more than one choice available).
    Jim, thanks for clarifying on the shelf life of the B70. You are absolutely correct. I got 30 swims out of my B70 and it was only slightly stretched out. I did not have any holes or rips. I just decided to buy another one b/c of the slightly stretched out condition. I'm sure I could have gotten more swims out of it. 75 is fantastic!

  16. #16
    Here to keep it real JimRude's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    If anyone needed additional insight into why FINA and its bobo's have made a mess of the tech suit issue, check out this interview with John Leonard, desperately trying to "clarify" the methodology and science behind their recent decisions:

    http://www.floswimming.org/videos/sp...a-suit-fiasco-

    This is an embarrassment, and IMHO shows how a few vocal "experts" can skew an entire discussion and the resulting regulations.
    This bush league psyche-out stuff. Laughable, man - ha ha!

  17. #17
    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    I just watched the Leonard interview and overall I think he did a good job explaining FINAs position and I do agree with a lot of what he said. Still, there are some inconsistencies. The most glaring was that permeability wasn't addressed in phase I because they didn't want to hurt the suit manufacturers, but then he defends the air trapping argument by saying that FINA isn't in the business of helping or hurting the suit makers. If this isn't clearly biased toward Speedo, I don't know what is.

    Probably the most consequential thing he said was that FINA will very likely outlaw permeable materials altogether as of Jan 1, 2010. I wouldn't be too anxious to buy a LZR right now! Although I guess since they wear out after one meet it might not matter.

  18. #18
    Mswimming
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by knelson View Post
    Probably the most consequential thing he said was that FINA will very likely outlaw permeable materials altogether as of Jan 1, 2010. I wouldn't be too anxious to buy a LZR right now! Although I guess since they wear out after one meet it might not matter.
    Seems to me the biggest reason to buy a B70 or similar suit is that they last longer. If they switch back to textile suits, will someone be able to develop a suit that lasts longer than a few meets?

  19. #19
    Very Active Member Redbird Alum's Avatar
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Here's a question... does USMS follow FINA rules/guidelines on everything else? Why just discuss the suit craze if we want to appear to be on the same plane with regard to rules and regs?

    IMHO: Stick with the FINA. Separate but equal never works.


  20. #20
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    Re: FINA suit rules or anything goes?

    Quote Originally Posted by knelson View Post
    Probably the most consequential thing he said was that FINA will very likely outlaw permeable materials altogether as of Jan 1, 2010. I wouldn't be too anxious to buy a LZR right now! Although I guess since they wear out after one meet it might not matter.
    Kirk:

    outlaw permeable or non-permeable?
    Mel Dyck
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