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Monday, May 13, 2013

Explaining The International Marathon Swimming Hall Of Fame

There are nearly 250 swimmers, coaches, pilots, organizations and groups inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame (IMSHOF).

The inductees fall into different categories with different criteria for selection and eligibility considerations.

The nominees under consideration in all categories should be international in their support and/or conduct of the Sport of Marathon Swimming and should be recognized as world leaders and champions in the sport. They should be the elite and the world’s finest in their field as a swimmer or as an administrator. Those who are considered should be head and shoulders above the other excellent swimmers and administrators in the field.

1. Honour Swimmers

There are two types of swimmers who are considered: Racers and Solo Swimmers. These athletes have excelled over the marathon swimming distances that have been redefined over the decades. Initially, the marathon swimming distance was ten miles. Then it was defined as 25 km. Due to the addition of the 10 km event at the Olympics, the distance of a marathon swim for the IMSHOF selection purposes is 10 km.

1A. Racers

Racers are those swimmers who regularity participate in world-class marathon swimming competitions. These competitions include the Olympic Games, FINA World Championships, FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix, and FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup events. Consideration is given to those swimmers winning or finishing among the top 3 finishers. Swimmers are usually not considered until they have retired for five years from their last active participation in international events. The exception to this rule is for active swimmers who compete at the international level for a minimum of 10 years, but who have not yet retired. The racer typically participates in many events over the years and is considered on the basis of more than a single or record-setting performance. Participation in and performance on relays is also a consideration.

1B. Solo Swimmers

Solo Swimmers are those swimmers who swim for the sole purpose of crossing an open body of water. They swim for time or merely to finish. They may swim a single non-stop event or a series of swims on successive days (stage swim). Their swims are over 10 km in length, and like the racer, their efforts should be over a period years and not in only one body of water unless the swimmer is claiming several swims in the same body of water. One-time record setting efforts are normally not considered. Participation in and performance on relays is also considered.

2. Pioneer Swimmers

These are the swimmers in the past eras who established their legacy over 50 years ago. They are held to the same basic qualifying standards as more contemporary swimmers. However, some latitude is given relative to the number of events in which they participated and in some cases the distance of the events.

3. Administrators (Coaches, Escort Pilots, Officials, Organizers, and Support Personnel)

These are dedicated personnel who assist in various functions to develop the sport of marathon swimming. There are no well-definied rules or guidelines as to what makes a world-class and elite administrator other than the volume of work performed, the effectiveness of their actions, their longevity during the work, and perhaps augmented by being at the right place at the right time. The person who is considered is compared to others in their field relative to their individual contributions.

Any nominee who has been selected as a Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award recipient is automatically selected as an IMSHOF Honoree.

The IMSHOF Honouree Certificates in this classification are indicated in the applicable area (e.g., Honour Coach, Honour Official, Honour Organizer, Honour Pilot).

4. Honouree Clubs, Organizations, and Race Organizing Committees

This classification includes Clubs, Organizations and Race Organizing Committees that perform in an outstanding manner over a period of years. The IMSHOF wants to recognize their contributions as being truly outstanding. The only criteria is that the contributions are made over a long period of time and that the events are at least 10 kilometers in length. The 10 km requirement can be waived if the selection committee deems it appropriate.

B. IMSHOF Certificate of Merit

In 1994, the Selection Committee of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame decided to create the Certificate of Merit in order to recognize and honor swimmers and major contributors to Open Water/Marathon Swimming that do not qualify as IMSHOF Honorees.

A swimmer must be retired from active participation before being considered for inclusion in the IMSHOF so they may have to wait for years before they can be recognized. The Committee felt that a Certificate of Merit would serve an instrument to recognize the swimmer before they are technically eligible as an IMSHOF Honoree.

The Committee may also consider presenting the award for a major solo effort. The exception to this award is when a swim is governed by another sanctioning body (e.g., the English Channel or Manhattan Island Marathon Swim). In these cases, it is the sanctioning body's responsibility to honor the swims under their control. However, the Committee will consider issuing a Certificate of Merit if that governing body so requests. In most cases, the IMSHOF Recording a Swim may be a better solution for this recognition.

A Certificate of Merit may be awarded to any individual or group making a major contribution to the sport. The group can be defined as FINA, National Federations, International Race Management, and event specific Marathon Swim Organizations (e.g., Channel Swimming Association). Additionally, a Certificate of Merit will be presented for the first-time swimmer or administrator is named as a Finalist on the ballot as a ISHOF Honoree. Candidates in other categories who supported or contributed to Marathon Swimming from other disciplines are also considered (e.g., Thomas Hoad of Australia served as the Director of the FINA World Championships and made a major contribution to the first FINA Open Water 25K World Championships and Jane Katz was on the committee that ran the first few Manhattan Island Marathon Swims).

The Certificate of Merit may also be presented to swimmers who are removed from the Nomination file as a result of not being selected as an honouree during the previous 10-year period. But there is no specific criterion used in the selection process and each case is considered on an individual basis. Only one certificate is issued to an individual or group.

C. Irving Davids-Captain Roger W. Wheeler Memorial Award

The Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award was established in 1970 by the New England Marathon Swimming Association (NEMSA) and to honor and recognize the contribution of individuals and groups making major contributions to Marathon Swimming and serve as a perpetual memorial to the two namesakes of the award.

The Davids-Wheeeler Award is an award of the International Swimming Hall of Fame, but it is administered by the IMSHOF. It is given annually to the person or group making major ongoing contributions to the sport of Marathon Swimming. Although the award is presented annually, it is in actuality an award for a lifetime of service. There is no specific critera for selection. Selection is based on comparisons with other candidates and the past winners.

D. Record A Swim Program

This classification is currently under revision.

E. Certificate of Appreciation and Recognition

A certificate will be available upon request to recognize any swimmer or administrator not technically qualifying for the IMSHOF Certificate of Merit. The concept for this Certificate was deemed appropriate when the Committee receives a request to determine if the IMSHOF could provide something to recognize and show IMSHOF appreciation for their efforts and accomplishments. These certificates are customized to meet the needs while maintaining the standards of the IMSHOF.

The International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame is entirely supported by the generous financial contributions of its donors and supporters. Over the decades, these donors have helped keep alive the memories and legacies of the previous generations of outstanding swimmers and contributors to the sport. For more information, visit here.

The 2013 International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame induction ceremonies will be held in Cork, Ireland between October 11th-13th. For more information on these ceremonies, visit here.

Copyright © 2013 by Open Water Swimming

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The Staff of the World Open Water Swimming Association

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference

Learn more...
Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE

The Global Open Water Swimming Conference is a conference on the sport of open water swimming, marathon swimming and swimming during triathlons and multi-sport endurance events.

The conference which has been attended by enthusiasts and luminaries from 6 continents, is devoted to providing information about the latest trends, race tactics, training techniques, equipment, psychological preparation, race organization and safety practices used in the sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons.

The conference's mission is to provide opportunities to listen and meet many of the world's most foremost experts in open water swimming, and to meet and discuss the sport among swimmers, coaches, administrators, event organizers, sponsors, vendors, officials, escort pilots, and volunteers from kayakers to safety personnel.

Dozens of presentations at the 2014 Conference at the Mount Stuart House cover numerous aspects of the vast and growing world of open water swimming where attendees can learn and share the latest trends, race tactics, training modalities, swimming techniques, equipment, race organization, logistics, operations, and safety practices for open water swimming as a solo swimmer, competitive athlete, fitness swimmer, masters swimmer, triathlete, multi-sport athlete, administrator, race promoter, sponsor or referee.

The conference was first held in Long Beach, California as part of the 2010 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships. It has since been held on the Queen Mary in California, at Columbia University and the United Nations in New York City, and in Cork, Ireland. This year in September, it comes to another iconic location, the Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute in Scotland.

"The Global Open Water Swimming Conference was started due to the desire and need for athletes, coaches, referees, administrators, race directors, promoters and sponsors from around the world to share, collect and learn information about the growing sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons," said founder Steven Munatones. "Other swimming conferences usually offering nothing on open water swimming or perhaps a speech or two, but we thought open water swimming deserves its own global conference. It is great that the community shares its information via the online social network, but there is nothing like meeting other open water swimming enthusiasts face-to-face and talking about the sport from morning to night."

Speakers at the conference include English Channel swimmers, ice swimmers, record holders, renowned coaches, world champions, professional marathon swimmers, renowned race directors, officials and administrators from the Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

"Because the audience is passionate and educated about the sport and its finest practitioners, the Global Open Water Swimming Conference is also the location of the induction ceremonies for the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and the annual WOWSA Awards that recognize the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, and the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Special Lifetime Achievement Awards are also occasionally presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport over their career."

The 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Programme

Wednesday, September 17th
Leave Glasgow to commence 2-day tour of Scotland [closest international airport is Glasgow]

Thursday, September 18th
Stay Mainland, North of Scotland

Friday, September 19th
14:00 - Swim Loch Lomond
17:00 - Head to Isle of Bute
19:30 - Scottish Banquet
21:30 - Dinner Dance

Saturday, September 20th
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
12:20 - Lunch and WOWSA Awards
13:40 – Speeches
15:40 - Round Table
19:00 - International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony

Sunday, September 21st
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
14:30 - Swim in St Ninian's Bay on the Isle of Bute

The luminaries of the open water swimming world who will be honored in Scotland will include:

* Sandra Bucha (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Jon Erikson (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Claudio Plit (Argentina), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Judith van Berkel-de Njis (Netherlands), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* David Yudovin (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Mercedes Gleitze (Great Britain), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* George Young (Canada), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Dale Petranech (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Contributor
* Melissa Cunningham (Australia), 2013 Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award winner
* Vojislav Mijić (Serbia), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* James Anderson (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Dr. Jane Katz (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Indonesian Swimming Federation, , International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Organisation
* Elizabeth Fry (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Pádraig Mallon (Ireland), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year
* Olga Kozydub (Russia), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year
* Bering Strait Swim (international team), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year
* International Ice Swimming Association (Ram Barkai, founder, South Africa), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year

For additional articles on the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference, visit:

* Olga Kozydub To Be Honored In Scotland
* Pádraig Mallon To Be Honored In Mount Stuart Castle
* Mount Stuart House, Splendid Setting For Swimming
* Colleen Blair To Kick-off Global Open Water Swimming Conference
* The Man Who Swims Better Than He Walks
* Joining In The Sea Goddess At The Hall Of Fame
* Mercedes Gleitze To Be Honored In Scotland
* The Incredible Career Of Merceded Gleitze
* Jon Erikson To Be Honoured In Florida
* The Incredible Career Of Mercedes Gleitze
* St Ninian's Bay To Host International Swim Conference

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac



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