~History of Swimming~

The earliest records of swimming date back to prehistoric times
with 7,000 year old Stone Age paintings depicting swimming.
However, competitive swimming has a much younger history .

http://www.flickr.com/photos/pagedooley/2305010616/

Competitive Swimming Timeline

  • Competitive swimming in Europe started around 1800,
    mostly using breaststroke.

  • Swimming was part of the first modern Olympic games
    in 1896 in Athens.

  • In 1902 Richard Cavill introduced the front crawl to
    the Western world.

  • In 1908, the world swimming association, Fédération
    Internationale de Natation (FINA), was formed.

  • Women were first allowed to swim in the Olympic Games
    in 1912 in Stockholm, competing in freestyle races.

  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/leonneal/2405807723/
  • Butterfly was developed in the 1930s and was at first a
    variant of breaststroke, until it was accepted as a separate
    style in 1952.

  • In 1943 the US ordered the reduction of fabric in swimsuits
    by 10% due to wartime shortages, resulting in the first
    two-piece swimsuits.

  • In 1998 Benoît Lecomte swam across the Atlantic Ocean, a total
    of 5,600 kilometres in 72 days, swimming 6 to 8 hours daily.
    Two sailors accompanied him on a sailboat.