Change to the Minimum Age for Open Water Swimming

Please read change to ASA Law regarding minimum age for competition, effective 1 May 2009 available for download here.

There is now an additional band for those swimmers aged 11 in the year. Unfortunately the announcement is too late for this year’s Weymouth swim as the closing date is 8 June 2009 but it will be in next year’s ASA South West Region conditions.

Organisers are being asked to implement the change as soon as possible.

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  1. Updated from ASA news: Young swimmers are now being given the opportunity to test their open water swimming skills thanks to a rule change by the ASA. Previously, the minimum age for competitors was 11 years (so long as the swimmer was due to turn 12 years old by 31st December the year of the competition).

    However, this rule change means that some 10 year olds can now compete in events up to and including 1,000 metres (so long as the swimmer is due to turn 11 years old by 31st December the year of the competition).

    The Chairman of the Open Water Working Group, John Hidle, said of the rule change:

    “I am pleased to say that, following a lengthy medical study, the Board have adopted the new age band (subject to the maximum distance proviso). Together with the provision for Temporary Membership of the ASA, which will allow athletes to try the sport, the two changes are expected to pave the way for significantly increased participation.”

    The age band will not necessarily be added to every event, but some clubs and regions are already making plans to allow younger swimmers to take part.

    Hidle went on to say: “The medical study will continue to monitor the effect of the minimum age change in those events which do incorporate it. Decisions on the day of the event will always err on the side of caution. Swimmers, and especially younger swimmers and the potentially inexperienced, will only be allowed to take part if the Safety Officer considers this to be prudent.”

    In order to compete in any discipline at the level of competition indicated, a swimmer must be of the minimum age shown. The age specified in each case shall be the age of the swimmer at midnight on 31st December in the year of competition, except where the section states otherwise.

    Change to the Minimum Age for Open Water Swimming in the Rules of the Amateur Swimming Association (“ASA”)
    Please be advised that ASA Regulation 410.4 regarding the minimum age for Open Water Swimming has been amended to now read:
    410.4 Open Water
    410.4.1 Events up to and including 1,000 m 11 years
    410.4.2 Events up to and including 2,000 m 12 years
    410.4.3 Events up to and including 10,000 m 13 years
    410.4.4 Events over 10,000 m 16 years
    This change has been approved by ASA Board and is effective as from 1 May 2009.

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