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Thursday, August 3, 2017

Join Endless Pools at the USMS Summer Nationals

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The 2017 U.S. Masters Swimming Summer Nationals just kicked off. This year, attendees can take free test swims in the Elite Endless Pool® on the pool deck!

The Elite Endless Pool features our smoothest, most versatile swim current – it maxes out at a pace equivalent to :51/100 yards! With over 50 speed settings, swimmers can also take it down to a gentler pace for warm-ups or cool-downs.

The Elite Endless Pool on the deck of the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis
You can try this Elite Endless Pool starting Friday this week! The U.S. Masters Swimming Summer Nationals are taking place through this Sunday, August 6, at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis. To reserve a time for a test swim, please call Endless Pools at 877-900-7820.

The top-of-the-line Endless Pool, the Elite is the model found on university pool decks around the country and at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado. It's the swim-in-place pool of choice for great swimmers and swimmers who aspire to greatness!

If you're not attending, you can catch all the action via live streams on the U.S. Masters Swimming website. Endless Pools is a proud sponsor of U.S. Masters Swimming.

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Thursday, July 27, 2017

The Week in Swimming

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Paralympic triathlete and Endless Pool owner Joe Townsend
Is Katie Ledecky getting faster at an age when previous distance swimmers have slowed down? (Washington Post)

Italian swimmer Federica Pellegrini became the first swimmer, male or female, to medal in one race for seven consecutive World Championships. (Swim Swam) Her gold in the 200 freestyle left Ledecky with a disappointing (for her) silver. (Swimming World)

He missed the chance to compete in Rio, but 32-year-old swimmer Matt Grevers is in the midst of his comeback. Plus, a profile of Stanford Cardinals swim coach Greg Meehan, who has the daunting task of coaching Katie Ledecky. (New York Times)

Grevers joined Simone Manuel, Caeleb Dressel and Lilly King to break the world record – twice! – in the mixed 4x100 medley, a new Olympic event for Tokyo 2020. (Reuters)

World-record breaststroker Adam Peaty discusses how he got serious about swimming and how he stays grounded. (CNN) With his performance in Budapest, he has eclipsed David Wilkie as Britain's most decorated swimmer. (The Week)

Another sports writer contemplates who might be the new face of men's swimming in the U.S. (USA Today)

Philadelphians, here are eight natural swimming spots within two hours of the city. (Philly.com)

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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

A Paralympian's Top 3 Benefits of Endless Pools Training

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Paralympic triathlete and Endless Pool owner Joe Townsend
Since Joe Townsend lost both his legs in Afghanistan, he's been on the move more than ever. The Royal Marine Commando-turned-paratriathlete has competed at the IRONMAN World Championships in Hawaii, in ITU events from Geneva to Yokohama, and at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games.

After his fateful accident in 2008, he turned to the triathlon to regain his feeling of control over his body and to raise money for Help for Heroes, a charity supporting wounded UK veterans.

He's seemingly embraced every challenge to come his way; fortunately, his triathlon training got less challenging last year. Reports Joe, "I'm really fortunate to have an Endless Pool® right in my house."

Becoming a Paratriathlete

"After my injury, I was asked to do an IRONMAN to raise money for charity." At the time, Joe was "not at all" a competitive swimmer; "I could pass a basic swim test, but I needed extra lessons." He almost opted for the bike/run duathlon option. "I eventually decided, 'Why not try to learn to swim so I can call myself an Ironman.'"

"I've been swimming six days a week ever since." That hasn't always been so easy. At the nearby public pool, where he had to share lanes with less focused swimmers, "serious training wasn't possible."

"When I swim in a traditional pool," the double amputee notes, "I can't kick off the wall." That means additional effort to get back up to speed, so "I can't get in my race pace."

As a result, "I was really struggling with my swimming time," Joe laments. He recalls thinking to himself, "It would be awesome to swim whenever I wanted without any interruption."
Bringing Training Home
Joe now swims in a Performance Endless Pool, courtesy of our award-winning dealer, Home Counties Pools & Hot Tubs. A step up from our Original Endless Pool, the Performance swim current adjusts from a gentle warm up to its demanding top pace of 1:11/100m.

"The Endless Pool is an absolutely fantastic piece of equipment. It's more open-water specific," he observes. On a more personal note, "I wanted to optimize my training environment at home so I can be close to my family."

Of course, Joe found other benefits of his Endless Pools training…

#1: Stroke Analysis
"First, for swim stroke analysis and working on technique, the Endless Pool is just brilliant," Joe finds. "It helped to improve my swim times dramatically."

Joe uses Endless Pools' two stainless-steel underwater mirrors. The Swim Mirror, which is at the front and angled upwards, lets swimmers monitor their hand entry, pull through, and shoulder rolls. The Floor Mirror lies flat to reflect a swimmer's body position.
#2: Video Feedback
"Second, I can video myself and look back" to review swim technique and body position.

In-place swimming makes it easy to record a full swim with a stationary camera, either underwater or just above. Joe can then assess the real-time adjustments that he made using the mirrors.

#3: Immediate Pace Signals

Friday, July 21, 2017

The Week in Swimming

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2x Olympic medalist and Golden Bears swimmer Kathleen Baker
At the FINA World Championships in Budapest, Katie Ledecky and Adam Peaty may have locks on their signature events, but several races remain wide open. (Swim Swam)

Just before Ryan Lochte's return to competitive swimming (Swimming World), a Brazilian court threw out all charges against him (NPR).

A deaf swimmer is spearheading a movement to start all swimming races with lights instead of sound. (USA Today, with video)

Two recent swimming memoirs have inspired one reviewer to ask if swimming has special appeal for women. (Economist)

Runners, check out these 4 ways that cross-training by swimming can help your runs. (Runner's World)

In Italy, free swimming lessons aim to heal and inspire refugees traumatized by crossing the Mediterranean. (Washington Post)

A Twin Cities bartender is readying a first-of-its-kind swimming tour of all 22 Apostle Islands in Lake Superior (Pioneer Press) while an 87-year-old judge aims to be the oldest person to swim from Alcatraz to San Francisco (Action News, with video).

Check out these images of Philadelphia's long-abandoned indoor swimming pool (Curbed), the 15 most spectacular pools in the world (CNN) and the most architecturally grand pools in Paris (The Spaces).

Could safe swimming in the Seine – past the Eiffle Tower and Notre Dame Cathedral – give Paris the edge over Los Angeles to host the 2024 Olympics? (Reuters)


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Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Downstairs & Above-ground: Planning a Basement Pool

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Professor of Jazz Studies and Endless Pool owner Bert in between swims with his two cats
Bert wanted to swim all year round, whenever the mood struck. That's why he installed his Endless Pool® in his previously unfinished basement.

The convenience, privacy, and 24/7 access suit him just fine: something of a Renaissance man, he's active in sports and the arts … and he finds that his Original Endless Pool helps him with both!

Why Not Outdoors?

With a warm climate like South Carolina's, why not install an outdoor pool? "Then I have to worry about debris falling in the pool," notes Bert. "I live in the woods.

"And I can swim 365 indoors," he adds. "It rarely gets cold, but it did snow this winter, and I went swimming!"

Summers aren't always ideal either: "It gets unbearably hot outside" where the mercury can hit 100° F or higher.

The unfinished basement that would soon house an Endless Pools swimming machine
This unfinished basement would soon have tile, rubberized flooring, a moisture-resistant ceiling, and an Endless Pools swimming machine (see below). All components of the modular Endless Pool fit easily through standard doorways and down stairs.

Why the Basement?
Like many unfinished basements, Bert's had "a slab already laid down." That's a smart cost-saving measure; as with garage pools, using a pre-existing concrete floor saves money on site preparation. "It made sense," he says plainly.

He used an approximately 16' x 20' space for his standard model, which has only a 9' x 15' footprint. With the Endless Pool, you only need to access one side of the cabinet, so Bert could save space with a corner installation. He had no need to access the backside.

Plus, "it seemed to make the most sense so there's less siding." Purchasing and installing skirting on just two of the four sides is another smart cost-saving measure!

Bert swimming in the Endless Pools swimming machine in his finished basement
Bert's walkout basement provided the ideal site to swim for health, fun, recovery from baseball pitching, and as a meditative break when composing music. His Endless Pool retreat is always comfortable and accessible, through South Carolina's heat waves to its rare snowfalls.

Finishing the Unfinished Basement
Starting with exposed studs and cement walls, Bert chose tile in clean, neutral tones and "rubber flooring like you find at a gym."

Friday, July 14, 2017

The Week in Swimming

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Cliff diver Orlando Duque competing in the Red Bull Cliff Diving World Series
Olympic gold-medalist Anthony Ervin headlined the Maccabiah Games, an international Jewish/Israeli multi-sport event. (Jerusalem Post)

Hungarian gold-medal swimmer Katinka Hosszú discusses her pre-race mental preparation. (CNN, with video)

Inspired by Highlights magazine, USA Swimming released their first-ever Safe Sport Activity Book for kids.

Don't miss this fascinating podcast on swimming pool design, its impact on skateboarding culture, and the curious history of the kidney-shaped pool. (99% Invisible)

Poor swimming skills are one of the five most common weaknesses among Ironman triathletes. (220 Triathlon)

Ultra-marathon swimmer Jaimie Monahan completed her swim from Vermont to Quebec. (Swimming World)

Try these tips to keep your dog swimming safely. (SA Express-News)

"You’ll never regret a swim," says Ruth Fitzmaurice, author of a bestselling memoir about family, health, and swimming in the Irish Sea. (Guardian)

Get inspired by Susan Marens, a 75-year-old open water swimmer who travels internationally to compete. (Virginian-Pilot)

New Yorkers, your kids can take free Learn-to-Swim classes at your state parks.

A Wisconsin heat wave inspired this flashback to when swimming was illegal for fear of "indecent exposure." (WPR)

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