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Anorak | The naked swimsuit solution

The naked swimsuit solution

by | 24th, February 2009

THE sport of swimming is facing a high-tech crisis. In 2008, a staggering 108 world records were broken in the pool, 79 of them by swimmers wearing a cutting-edge Speedo LZR Racer swimsuit.

FINA, swimming’s governing body, met 16 manufacturers, including Speedo, at the weekend and will make some changes to swimsuits’ advantageous design next month.

Duncan Goodhew, one of Britain’s most successful swimmers from the good old days (not to mention one of our most beloved slapheads), has called for high-tech suits to be banned completely.

“It is quite clear that when swimmers cover themselves in material they believe it will make them swim faster – they believe it’s a swimming aid. That breaks FINA’s rules already,” Goodhew said this week.

He has a point but it’s very difficult to put the genie back in the bottle. Speedo is a company first and they sell their ultra-modern suits on the back of the considerable success of the likes of bong-toting Olympian Michael Phelps. And there’s little doubt that Speedo is lobbying FINA hard to maintain the status quo.

Of course, there is a simple solution to the question of performance-enhancing suits, although it’s not one that Speedo is going to like: swim naked, as nature intended.

Not only would that get rid of any argument about the benefit of modern swimsuits – although you’d have to reset all world records – but it would surely give the sport’s TV ratings a massive boost in the arm.

We’d watch it, anyway.



Posted: 24th, February 2009 | In: Sports Comments (10) | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink