The Nature of Swimming

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Competitive swimming is a sport full of juxtaposing ideologies and personal struggle with little camaraderie. The divergent sport is always evolving and pitting individuals alone against one another in a foreign environment. Likewise corporate employees day in and day out work alone building their nest egg until the day they can succeed and come out on top or retire. Competitive swimming symbolizes the struggle for many of the Americans ideologies within the framework of corporate America.

In inequalities in the realm of competitive swimming mirror those of corporate America. Swimming like an overwhelming amount of corporations is dominated by wealthy white people. In the 2006, the last year the NCAA published data, whites were nearly 70 times more likely to be in division I swim teams than African-Americans. Even worse, a recent study confirmed that, “Fatal unintentional drowning rates for 5-14 year old African Americans were 3.2 times higher than that for whites.” The swimming disparity is not just one of race but economic class as the percentage of blacks in the is significantly lower than their overall percentage in the population. Swimming is much more expensive than basketball, football and track and thus facilities are frequently only available to the wealthy. Just as people are scared away from swimming they are scared away from corporate America supposing that they do not have enough training, their family did not have money and thus do not even attempt to succeed. Swimming although it may seem relatively natural requires lots of training and resources to master that complicated strokes. As the coach said, “there are no natural swimmers”. Parents often have their children training to become professional swimmers often ...

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...Wayne Humphrey, vice president of government relations for Central Florida YMCA said, "When you look into their eyes, you can see they believe they have a future. Their aspirations and their hope is grounded in their experience as swimmers, as people and as future leaders." Breaking barriers in swimming and incorporation incites images of freedom and hope that Americans desire. Despite the reality fettered by inequalities in access and arbitrary rules as long as Americans desire to succeed and value individuality competitive swimming and corporations will continue to grow.

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