Sat, 14 May 2016
What is Synchronised Swimming?
Synchronised swimming developed from water ballet. The best way to
describe it is dancing in the water. Most figures (moves) are completed
upside down. Only women compete in the sport. It is performed in solos,
duets (pairs), trios (threes) or in a team.
Synchronised Swimming History
Originally known as water ballet, synchronised swimming began in Canada in
the 1920s. It spread to the United States in the early '30s. A display of it
at the 1934 Chicago World's Fair was loved by the spectators.
By 1968 most states of Australia had people practising synchronised swimming. Recently Australia competed in the 2000 Sydney Olympics, the Commonwealth Games and the World Championships in Barcelona. At the Commonwealth Games we won two bronze medals.
Female Olympic Events
AUSTRALIAN COMMONWEALTH GAMES MEDAL TALLY BETWEEN 1930-2002
Current and Recent Australian Synchronised Swimmers
A synchronised swimmer needs to have
The amount of training depends upon the age and level of the athlete. At a young age, synchronised swimmers train about 3 days a week for 2-3 hours a day. Elite athletes train up to 10 hours a day six days a week. The sport demands time therefore athletes must train their own bodies, as well as master a synchronized routine. This takes repetition to the highest degree. It took 9 months for our team to create and perfect our 2 Olympic routines in 1996. These days teams to train for a year or two together to prepare for the Olympics.
Twice a week the swimmers perform push-ups, squats and jumping exercises to build power for the water. The team also did dance twice a week to work on body movement, facial expressions, flexibility and gymnastics for flexibility. The swimmers worked with a mime once a week to help with their acting skills
Synchronised swimmers on weight loss diets are particularly at risk. When in heavy training iron levels should be checked regularly. Iron-rich foods such as lean red meat and breakfast cereals fortified with iron should be included regularly in the diet. Iron-rich plant foods such as wholegrain cereals, spinach and legumes should be combined with animal iron sources (e.g. wholegrain pasta with bolognese sauce) and vitamin C sources (e.g. glass of orange juice consumed with breakfast cereal) to improve iron absorption. A sports dietitian provides specific dietary help.
Synchronised Swimmers often worry about getting sick during periods of heavy
training. To keep the swimmer from catching coughs and colds many
nutritional supplements and strategies have been suggested. Currently the
most important strategy emerging from
Synchronised Swimmers who undertake a long taper may need to reduce total energy intake to match their reduced workload; otherwise unwanted gains in body fat will occur. Between events and between heats and semi-finals/finals fluid levels and carbohydrate stores need to be replenished. When there is only a short interval between routines drink a carbohydrate-containing fluid such as sports drink, fruit juice or soft drink. Snacks such as yoghurt, fruit, cereal bars or sandwiches are suitable for longer gaps between routines, or for recovery at the end of a session. Most swimmers eat a high-carbohydrate lunch and have a nap between day heats and evening final sessions. On waking, a carbohydrate-rich snack is eaten before returning to the pool.
Find out more about starting synchronised swimming in:
References & Sources