Swimming pictogram ©ATHOC Swimming

05/23/13

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Swimming                                                                  Swimming Documents

Swimming began as a rehabilitation and leisure activity, but soon developed into one of the most popular and highly competitive sports for athletes with a disability. In Swimming competitions participants are men and women with: a physical disability or vision impairment.

Anne-Cecile Lequien of France in action during the women’s 200 metres freestyle S4 final during the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games in Sydney. © Jamie Squire / AllsportAthletes with vision impairment, depending on the degree of vision loss, are classified into the following categories: S11-SB11-SM11, S12-SB12-SM12 and S13-SB13-SM13.

For swimmers with a physical disability, classification is relatively more complex. Depending on the type of disability, one first examines the degree of muscle strength, movement coordination or the scope of movement, and then the functional ability and movement limitations in the water are assessed in the various swimming styles. After the above assessment, athletes are classified into:

bullet 10 classes, S1 - S10, for freestyle, backstroke, and butterfly
bullet 8 classes for breaststroke, SB2-SB9
bullet 8 classes for the individual medley, SM3-SM10

The greater the functional potential of a swimmer, the higher the category in which he or she will be classified. A swimmer can be classified into one class for one swimming style and a different category for another. Eg., S5 in freestyle, SB4 or SB3 in breaststroke and SM5 or SM4 in the individual medley. Through this system of classification, athletes with a different type of disability can be classified into the same category as long as they have a similar or almost similar functional ability.

 

 

 

  

 
  Tri-State Regional Swimming Documents  

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