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Angled Wedge-Shaped Footrest For Starting Blocks

About 18 months ago FINA approved starting blocks with an angled wedge-shaped footrest on the back edge.  The idea is that athletes will have the advantage of producing more force from the blocks and therefore faster starts/races.  In addition to the wedge some manufacturers are able to provide side handles on the blocks that athletes can use to generate speed.  Such handles were part of the custom blocks at IUPUI that were installed 30 years ago and have been allowed for many years.  The measure of the amount of advantage of the adjustable footrest is not conclusive but testing indicates that the handles offer significant advantage.  USA Swimming and recently the NCAA voted to allow the wedge style blocks but NFSHSA has not yet approved them.  KDI Paragon, SR Smith and Spectrum, have wedge-style blocks with side handles. Omega has wedge-style blocks.   Anti and Kiefer only offer side handles only.  Older blocks by KDI Paragon and Spectrum can be retrofitted to have a wedge and handles.

There are negative aspects to the wedge.  Different athletes will want different locations so wedges must be easily movable.  Some athletes do not like the wedge and choose not to use it.  Some athletes may not be used to the manufacturer’s method of adjustment.  Delays in meets may be common.  The wedge also may need to be safely removable during relay starts.  Then, where does it go?  Who replaces it?  With rear step starting blocks stepping over the wedge can be a safety concern.  With side step starting blocks stepping over the handles may be a problem.

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Birmingham CrossPlex To Host NCAA Division II Swimming Championships

The NCAA has announced that they will be hosting the Men’s & Women’s NCAA Division II Championships at the Brimingham CrossPlex.  The Birmingham CrossPlex is a world-class facility designed for three primary sports: indoor track and field, volleyball, and competitive swimming and diving. Located just two miles from theBirmingham-SouthernCollegecampus, the Birmingham CrossPlex is proud to […]

What Is A Bulkhead?

 A bulkhead is a structure that can separate a pool into different sections.  Typically these structures are moveable in the United States to allow the pool to be adjusted to accommodate different field of play (Yards and Meters).  For example, in a 50 meter pool with 2 movable bulkheads there can be as many as […]

Wish List For Chamionship Facilities

When developing a new aquatic facility that is intended to be a venue facility for sport, there are a significant number of priorities to be managed.  Most facilities will not be selected in the bidding process to host a major championship event.  When prioritizing capital dollars for the final solution, decisions will be required to […]

Kentucky Pool Regulations

The Kentucky Department for Public Health is currently working to revise the swimming pool and bathing facility regulation, 902 KAR 10:120. The current regulation has not been updated in many years and is under consideration for revision.  The Division of Public Health Protection and Safety have met several times and drafted proposed changes.  At this […]