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Thread: Water Temp v wetsuit

  1. #41
    Very Active Member E=H2O's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by chaos View Post
    I . . . and beer company sponsorships.
    Heck in the 80's there was the Bud Light Open Water Series in Southern California. Every weekend through the summer there was a race from Santa Barbara to San Clemente. And by the way, beer is still e recovery drink of choice for triathlons in Oregon, and sometimes even step in as one of the sponsors.
    "If you didn't swallow water in your last open water race, you weren't racing."

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  2. #42
    Very Active Member Chicken of the Sea's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisM View Post

    I am sure in OW swimmers' eyes that makes us triathletes weaker, wimpier, not willing to work hard enough, blah blah blah. Whatever. And the analogy to motorized bikes at an IM is a non sequitur. Motors are illegal. Wetsuits aren't (at those races). I wouldn't think that's a difficult concept to grasp.
    Blah blah is correct. I'm sure wetsuits are very useful and I wore one myself in an IM rather than let inferior swimmers beat me. All I'm saying is that they allow swimmers to "swim" in conditions they are not trained for. A shortcut, much like putting a motor on a bike. Not difficult to comprehend.
    It was quite capable in the water, perhaps a little on the slow side, but it wasn't impressed by my appearance.

  3. #43
    sǝssɐןb ɹǝʇʇǝq ʇǝb That Guy's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Once upon a time...
    • I hate everything.
    • I hate everything more!
    • I hate everything infinity.
    • I hate everything infinity plus one!
    • I beer.
    • I beer too!
    And they all lived happily ever after.

  4. #44
    Moderator Rob Copeland's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisM View Post
    I don't care that a RD sets rules to increase participation. At the end of the day, the more people that participate in my sport means that more events will be put on, which means that I get to race more. Races that don't get support die. In my naive and ideal world, people will not enter races for which they are not prepared.
    Excellent point. Assuming an objective is to get more people participating in the sport or as the USMS mission states “To promote health, wellness, fitness and competition for adults through swimming” then let’s do what we can to get more people in the water.

    Quote Originally Posted by geog View Post
    the bicycle analogy is encumber by the fact that a bike is required
    for cycling, whereas a wetsuit is not required for swimming.
    I agree the bicycle analogy falls short, so let’s go with the shoe analogy.

    In most tri’s shoes are not required for the run. However shoes (like wetsuits) do provide safety and competitive advantage to those who wear them. And with the exception of the Barefoot Running Society, I doubt there are many folks who grouse about them shoed runners.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chicken of the Sea View Post
    All I'm saying is that they allow swimmers to "swim" in conditions they are not trained for.
    This is a conversation we have been having for a long time. The fundamental question behind the statement is, is this a good or bad thing? Is it a bad thing if I can get people to come swim in the lake at 55F, in a wetsuit, by telling them that if I can do it without a wetsuit you can do it with one? It gets swimmers in the water and lets me train; win/win! Also, if adding a wetsuit division to an open water race makes it economical viable for the race director is this a bad thing?

    On the other hand I completely support events that choose to maintain elite standards. Part of the challenge of swims such as Lac Memphramagog, the English Channel, the Irish Channel, Manhattan Island, Catalina Channel is cold water preparation. In fact, I’d be disappointed if the CSA started giving recognition to people swimming the English Channel in a wetsuit.

  5. #45
    Active Member geog's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    In most tri’s shoes are not required for the run. However shoes (like wetsuits) do provide safety and competitive advantage to those who wear them. And with the exception of the Barefoot Running Society, I doubt there are many folks who grouse about them shoed runners.
    +1 @ Barebutt Swimming Society

    shoes are more analogous to goggles than to wetsuits since
    both shoes and goggles 1) are worn to a prevent physical harm
    that cannot be mitigated by training and 2) are worn even though
    they carry competitive disadvantages, such as time lost during
    T1 and T2 to put on shoes, and a loss (?) of stream line in the
    case of goggles. goggles also correct vision.

    the weak link might be the non-textile swim cap, which is selected
    and donned for heat retention and speed. there are other
    inconsistencies. some mechanical alterations are ok, such as
    shaving, while others are not, such as skin grafts to web toes
    or fingers or bone lengthening or shortening.

    maybe the division between amateur and professional athletes
    is a good analogy. personally, i do not have much invested in
    the putative issue, it's just fun to mull over controversies.
    swimith

  6. #46
    Very Active Member E=H2O's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob Copeland View Post
    On the other hand I completely support events that choose to maintain elite standards.
    As an american, I am sick and tired of the "elites" telling me what I can and cannot do. [SARC INT]
    Last edited by E=H2O; April 4th, 2012 at 01:52 PM.
    "If you didn't swallow water in your last open water race, you weren't racing."

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  7. #47
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by Chicken of the Sea View Post
    Blah blah is correct. I'm sure wetsuits are very useful and I wore one myself in an IM rather than let inferior swimmers beat me. All I'm saying is that they allow swimmers to "swim" in conditions they are not trained for. A shortcut, much like putting a motor on a bike. Not difficult to comprehend.
    LOL. I rest my case. Use the tools available to you. Even if they are anathema
    Last edited by ChrisM; April 4th, 2012 at 01:54 PM.

  8. #48
    Very Active Member E=H2O's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by Chicken of the Sea View Post
    All I'm saying is that they allow swimmers to "swim" in conditions they are not trained for.
    Let's not start down the road of requiring a qualifying swim in similar conditions to make sure they've trained properly (although it is the only way to really know). While fear keeps many out of OW races, there are always a few swimmers who are not ready for the conditions of the race, surf or weather with or without a wetsuit. I think people use them to overcome the cold (skinny triathletes), or in many cases, just the fear of the cold. I think the real danger is a swimmer panicing while swimming in close quarters in a group - particularly at the start and turn buoys.

    I think everyone can be taught to float on their back with or without a wetsuit - maybe that should be checked before each race. Imagine seeing 100 people floating on their backs before the start of a 1 mile OW swim. It might draw more spectators than the race itself. (Maybe we should do a "flash mob" float in the La Jolla Cove on a hot summer weekend.)
    "If you didn't swallow water in your last open water race, you weren't racing."

    www.bobswims.com/

  9. #49
    Very Active Member chaos's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by E=H2O View Post
    (Maybe we should do a "flash mob" float in the La Jolla Cove on a hot summer weekend.)
    NEVER turn your back on a garabaldi!

  10. #50
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Looks like a crutch... walks like a crutch... smells like a cr[]tch....
    fwiw, feeding can also be couched as a crutch. it has been
    demonstrated to be unnecessary even in long (21 mile) swims:

    [1] "... did not touch food or drink throughout the long
    swim, but had a light breakfast of canteloupe, cereal,
    toast and coffee one hour before starting."


    [2] "... ruddy of cheek, bright of eye and full of life ...
    gave not the least sign of the great ordeal she had
    gone through. She would not even rest on the trip
    up the bay and spent most of the time chatting and
    enjoying another meal of cold food."

    it is not even necessary in order break records:

    [3] "... broken the record for the swim ... by seven
    minutes and 30 seconds ... in far harsher conditions"


    sources:
    [1], [2]: http://www.nycswim.org/Article/ArticleTemplate.aspx?Article_ID=728
    [3]: p137 in http://www.amazon.com/dp/0786440287
    swimith

  11. #51
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    shoes are more analogous to goggles than to wetsuits since
    both shoes and goggles 1) are worn to a prevent physical harm
    that cannot be mitigated by training and 2) are worn even though
    they carry competitive disadvantages, such as time lost during
    T1 and T2 to put on shoes, and a loss (?) of stream line in the
    case of goggles. goggles also correct vision.


    I have stopped wearing goggles in the salt water if my swim is 2 miles or less. I find I can sight and navigate better. I tend to swim in clean waters though. One less thing to worry about. My main peeve with the wetsuits is taking them off.
    DrMikey

  12. #52
    Active Member geog's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    I have stopped wearing goggles in the salt water if my swim is 2 miles or less. I find I can sight and navigate better. I tend to swim in clean waters though. One less thing to worry about. My main peeve with the wetsuits is taking them off.
    sounds like you've acclimated your eyes to the salt.
    is that for events or for saltwater training swims too?
    and are your eyes irritated/red afterwards?
    Last edited by geog; April 4th, 2012 at 06:10 PM.
    swimith

  13. #53
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by geog View Post
    fwiw, feeding can also be couched as a crutch.
    It could, but it would be sort of ridiculous. Reminds me of an argument someone made - I forget where - that the escort boat is an artificial aid in marathon swimming, and that true marathon swimmers should navigate themselves.

    An interesting concept... but I seem to recall, the only guy who ever tried that in the English Channel washed ashore in Belgium a few days later.

    Beware of the false equivalence.

    I guess it depends how you define the sport - how you conceive of the meaningful challenges.

    In triathlon, withstanding cold water is not considered a meaningful criterion of excellence - so wetsuits are allowed. (Kinda laughable that they drew the line with the De Soto suits, though. If 3mm is fair, what's "unfair" about 5mm?)

    In marathon swimming, cold-water tolerance is - and always has been - part of the game. A fundamental part. Being able to swim without eating is not a fundamental part of the game. Being able to navigate by the sun, moon, and wave direction is not a fundamental part of the game. Ergo, wetsuits aren't equivalent to feeding and escort boats.

    I'm fairly certain if Trudy Ederle (the subject of geog's articles) were alive today, she'd tell us her decision to not eat was a personal preference, and she certainly wouldn't expect future competitors in the swim-later-to-be-known-as the "Ederle Swim" to also refrain from eating. On the other hand, if you asked her thoughts on the idea of people in wetsuits breaking her record, she'd say, "F*ck those guys." Or something to that effect.

    Open water swimming (as distinguished from marathon swimming) is a bit of a gray area, because OWS events are often organized by the same people who organize triathlons. In such events, triathlon rules tend to prevail. Which sucks, but I guess it's better than having no event.

    Bottom line: If you allow people the use of performance-enhancing devices, they will be used. In deciding which devices to allow, and which to ban, it helps to consult the history and spirit of the sport. Does the device conflict with this history and spirit in a fundamental way?

  14. #54
    Active Member geog's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    evmo, just to cut to the chase, or possibly cut to the chase, does your argument boil down to tradition (which i would *not* consider to be an invalid argument)?
    swimith

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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    I dislike the word because it can connote backwardness, narrow-mindedness, and intolerance... but yes, that's at least part of it.

    I am not a traditionalist in most aspects of my life, but in sports I think it often makes sense.

    Should we allow aluminum bats in major league baseball?

    Should we lower the rim to 8 feet in basketball?

    I would certainly benefit from a paddles-and-buoy event in pool swimming, but I'd never seriously argue for the establishment of one.

    If "tradition" is good enough for Kevin Murphy and Nick Adams (CS&PF), Mike Read and Julie Bradshaw (CSA), Forrest Nelson and Carol Sing (CCSF), Morty Berger (MIMS & Ederle), Phil Rush (Cook Strait), etc. etc. -- and all those who came before them - then it's good enough for me.
    Last edited by evmo; April 4th, 2012 at 07:13 PM.

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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by evmo View Post
    I dislike the word because it can connote backwardness, narrow-mindedness, and intolerance... but yes, that's at least part of it.

    I am not a traditionalist in most aspects of my life, but in sports I think it often makes sense.

    Should we allow aluminum bats in major league baseball?

    Should we lower the rim to 8 feet in basketball?

    I would certainly benefit from a paddles-and-buoy event in pool swimming, but I'd never seriously argue for the establishment of one.

    If "tradition" is good enough for Kevin Murphy and Nick Adams (CS&PF), Mike Read and Julie Bradshaw (CSA), Forrest Nelson and Carol Sing (CCSF), Morty Berger (MIMS & Ederle), Phil Rush (Cook Strait), etc. etc. -- and all those who came before them - then it's good enough for me.
    But no one is arguing to change anything. What's the fear about (lowering the rim, adding paddles... those things aren't happening)? I get tradition. I get that OW swimmers are proud of their non wetsuit alcatraz swims, and I agree that it's more difficult, takes more preparation, more willingness to be uncomfortable... No one is taking that away from you.

    Every open water swim I do that allows wetsuits either (1) renders the wearer ineligible for an award or (2) has separate divisions. Some open water swims - Alcatraz - I wear a wetsuit (along with the huge majority). Some open water swims - everything in so cal between July and September - I don't. Those that don't want to wear wetsuits, don't wear wetsuits. I find it's quite a big ocean out there and there's plenty of room for everyone.

    I guess I just am not sure why people who only do OW swimming care what people who do tris -- different sport, different rules, different governing bodies -- wear in the water (although I think it's ironic that chicken admits to wearing a wetsuit in a triathlon while railing against their use simply because he didn't want to get beat out of the water, that's why 99.99% of triathletes wear them). Unless, of course, it's merely to say that OW swimmers are "better" in whatever sense of the word. Which is cool, it's human nature to do that after all. In the cycling world, roadies bag on mountain bikers bag on fixie riders bag on roadies bag on.... and on and on. Bt it's all just riding a bike after all. It's all rather silly in the end.

    Guess people just like to pump up "their" crowd and excoriate "the other" crowd.

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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisM View Post
    But no one is arguing to change anything.
    ...
    Every open water swim I do that allows wetsuits either (1) renders the wearer ineligible for an award or (2) has separate divisions.
    I'm not talking about short-distance OW races with separate categories. I'm talking about marathon swimming (in particular, solo marathon swimming). Your confusion of the two seems to indicate you have no idea what you're talking about with regard to the latter.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisM View Post
    I guess I just am not sure why people who only do OW swimming care what people who do tris wear in the water
    I don't.

  18. #58
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by evmo View Post
    I'm not talking about short-distance OW races with separate categories. I'm talking about marathon swimming (in particular, solo marathon swimming). Your confusion of the two seems to indicate you have no idea what you're talking about with regard to the latter.
    Wow.

    Yes, clearly I don't have a clue what I am talking about and you are much wiser than me.

    And proved my point better than I could have argued it.

    Thanks for the enlightening discussion

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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisM View Post
    Yes, clearly I don't have a clue what I am talking about and you are much wiser than me.
    Glad we cleared that up. Cheers.

  20. #60
    Very Active Member E=H2O's Avatar
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    Re: Water Temp v wetsuit

    Quote Originally Posted by evmo View Post
    It could,
    Bottom line: If you allow people the use of performance-enhancing devices, they will be used. In deciding which devices to allow, and which to ban, it helps to consult the history and spirit of the sport. Does the device conflict with this history and spirit in a fundamental way?
    On this basis neoprene caps should be allowed. I'm sure Ederle and others would have used them if they were available, and would find it comical that they are banned by all channel associations.

    As a side note: I did a bit of research in this area and the conclusion drawn by scientific studies is that it helps retain heat upon first immersion before the body shuts off blood flow to your skin. This is of course a critical time with regards to cold shock. On this basis I think it should be considered a safety device. Otherwise, you lose the same amount of heat per square inch as any other part of the body (although I think there may be one exception). There is one other time it helps, and that is when you first get out of the water when warm blood returns to the scalp. Again acting as a safety device. This contradicted everything I had learned in mountaineering as well. For illustrative purposes, uncover 60% of your body, but make sure your head and neck are covered. Now go out into a blizzard and tell me how that works for you.
    Last edited by E=H2O; April 4th, 2012 at 08:59 PM.
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