DNOWS Header

Image Map

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Historical Revolution: The Feminine Code Of Achievement

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

What would have happened to Larisa Ilchenko, Keri-Anne Payne, Haley Anderson, Éva Risztov, Martina Grimaldi, and Angela Maurer if Shelley Taylor-Smith had not come around in 1991?

In the era of Gertrude Ederle or Greta Andersen or Judith van Berkel de Nijs, Sandra Bucha and Shelley Taylor-Smith, women had to compete directly against men at the professional marathon swimming events. There was only one heat, one division, one awards podium.

Women were given a bit of extra cash - sometimes - if they were the first women, but it was expected that women prior to the 1990's competed against men head-to-head. There was not a distinct women's division and men's division; there were just races from point-to-point or from shore-to-shore. Mano-a-mano. Men versus women in one inter-gender competition.

If the one-division competitions were still held today, would Olympic and world champions like Larisa Ilchenko, Keri-Anne Payne, Haley Anderson, Éva Risztov, Martina Grimaldi or Angela Maurer have become so widely known or respected? Would they have realistically stood a chance competing against the likes of the top men like Ous Mellouli, Thomas Lurz, Richard Weinberger, Maarten van der Weijden or David Davies at any distance?

How times have changed. Radically and rightly so.

One of the speakers at the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference will be Shelley Taylor-Smith who helped bring along this radical change to the marathon swimming world. The renowned Australian swimmer will present, "The Feminine Code of Achievement - How a Lady from Down Under Revolutionised Professional Marathon Swimming Globally for Men and Women."

"Shelley will offer a fascinating, historical perspective of the late 20th century marathon swimming world, a time that may be incomprehensible to contemporary swimmers" explains Steven Munatones. "With all the changes in the sport over the last 20 years - from GPS to incorporation of the 10K marathon swim in the Olympic Games - one of the most profound and long-lasting changes to the sport were brought about when Shelley was competing head-to-head with the top men of her era. She will explain those times when women finally were rightfully recognized and rewarded for their athletic talents while competing amongst themselves and not directly against the men."

For more information on the Global Open Water Swimming Conference on the Isle of Bute in Scotland, visit Vigour Events.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

A Thank You Gift from WOWSA

WOWSA is celebrating the
1-Year Anniversary of the monthly Open Water Swimming Magazine
by giving you a free copy of the anniversary issue.

Open Water Swimming Magazine Anniversary Issue
File Size: 13MB


Download the file to your computer, and then right-click to extract the magazine which is inside the zip folder. The magazine is in PDF format.

CLICK HERE to download your free copy now.

Open Water Swimming Magazine

Open Water Swimming Magazine

The Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.

WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...

The Other Shore

The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.

2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac

An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

An almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.

This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.

But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.

In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...

Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:

The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.


Open Water Swimming Event Sanctioning

World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation

Open Water Race Calendar

Coaches Education Program