It's a good idea to begin at the bottom in everything except in learning to swim. ~Author Unknown
Swimming Words and Terms
| ATTACHED — status of an athlete member who represents a member club in competition after having
met the requirements of Article 203.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS – unless otherwise noted, shall mean the USA Swimming Board of Directors.
BODY — the torso, including shoulders and hips.
BONUS – (C FINAL) – the third fastest heat of swimmers competing in Finals.
CHAMPIONSHIP – (A Final) – the fastest heat of swimmers competing in Finals.
CLUB — an organization which has been accepted for membership in USA Swimming.
CONFORMING TIME — time achieved in a course that corresponds to the meet competition course.
CONSOLATION — (B Final) – the second fastest heat of swimmers competing in Finals.
COURSE — designated distance over which the competition is conducted.
LONG COURSE — 50 meters.
SHORT COURSE — 25 yards or 25 meters.
DRAFTING — swimming behind or next to another open water swimmer or support craft for the purpose of taking advantage of the reduced water resistance created by the former’s wake.
DUAL COMPETITION — competition between two teams.
END OF COURSE — designated wall for racing turns and finishes.
FINALS — a session of a meet in which the concluding heats of an event are contested which may include championship, consolation, or bonus finals.
FINISH — the instant that a swimmer touches the wall at the end of the prescribed distance.
FINISH POINT – the physical location where an open water race terminates.
FORWARD START — an entry made while facing the course.
FOUL — an instance of obstruction, interference, collision, or equipment malfunction which prevents the successful completion of a race.
HEADQUARTERS — USA Swimming’s office in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
HEATS — a division of an event in which there are too many swimmers to compete at one time. (See Preliminary Heats and Timed Final Heats)
HORIZONTAL — parallel to the surface of the water.
INITIAL DISTANCE — that first portion of a race for which an official time may be recorded but which is not in itself a completed event.
LANE LINE — continuous floating markers attached to a line stretched from the starting end to the turning end of the course for the purpose of separating each lane.
LENGTH — extent of the course from end to end.
MANUAL START — the start of any timing device by an individual in response to the same starting signal given to the swimmer(s).
MIXED CLASSIFICATION — meet in which events of Age Group and Junior, Senior, or any other classification are offered.
ON THE BACK — position of the body when the shoulders are at or past vertical towards the back.
ON THE BREAST — position of the body when the shoulders are at or past vertical towards the breast.
OPEN COMPETITION — competition which any qualified club, organization or individual may enter.
PACING — an attempt by a person not participating in an open water race to enter the water with the intent of providing moral support or otherwise assisting a swimmer in setting the tempo of the race.
PRACTICE — the instruction of swimming techniques, skills, knowledge, conditioning, aptitude and motivation.
PROGRAM — the order of events, including starting times and intermissions in a meet or portion thereof (See Session), sequentially listed by class of competition, sex, age group, distance, and stroke as set forth in the meet announcement.
RELAY — a race in which each team member swims a specified portion of the course.
RELAY LEG — the part of a relay event that is swum by a single team member.
SCISSOR KICK — use of the top of the instep of one foot and the bottom of the other foot in the propulsive part of the kick.
SCRATCH (from an event) — withdraw an entry from competition.
SEED — to distribute the swimmers among the required number of heats and/or lanes, according to their submitted or preliminary times.
DECK-SEED — swimmers are required to check in for their events on the day of the meet. After scratches are determined, events are seeded.
PRE-SEED — all entrants are seeded prior to the day of competition.
SESSION — any portion of a meet distinctly separated from other portions by locale, time, or type of competition, i.e., preliminaries and finals; morning and evening; Senior and Age Group, etc.
SPORTS ORGANIZATION — a corporation, club, federation, union, association, or other group organized in the United States which sponsors or conducts any athletic competition.
SUSPENSION — deprivation of all rights of membership in USA Swimming.
TIMED FINAL HEATS OR TIMED FINALS — competition in which only heats are swum and final placings are determined by the times achieved in the heats.
TIME STANDARD — the time a swimmer must have previously achieved in order to compete in that event at a designated competition.
TOUCH — contact with the end of the course.
TURN — a point where the swimmers reverse or change direction.
USA SWIMMING — USA Swimming, Inc., a Colorado corporation.
VENUE — the area located on the sides and ends of the pool, spectator area, team areas within the pool facility (e.g., portion of the building designated for teams and swimmers, or fenced area around an outdoor pool), locker rooms, and such other areas as may be specifically designated by the host club or organization, meet director, or referee. In open water competition, the geographical area and environs where the meet is conducted.
VERTICAL — perpendicular to the water surface.
WALL — vertical portion of the pool, contiguous surfaces of the deck and overflow gutter, the front portion of the starting block or platform, or the touchpad at the end of the course.
WARNING SIGNAL — a bell, whistle, air horn, or other appropriate audible device.
WAVE — at an open water event, a second or subsequent start used if the start area cannot accommodate all contestants at the same time.
WEBSITE — the official site maintained by USA Swimming on the internet (usaswimming.org).
Copyright 2011 Gabrielle Risica. Last modified June 7, 2011 12:52 PM