Banning swimwear is a logically flawed position

Recent advancements in swimwear has made the swimming body ban them due to a slew of new records broken, oh and whingeing from past record holders. But the fundamentals behind this idea are flawed, and I’m here to explain why.

Other sports have advancements the whole time

Consider what would occur if sport racing decided that new record-holding cars were to be banned as they didn’t constitute a fairness in comparison to past cars. It would be an unthinkible, economically retarded decision. Consider Michael Schumacher in ten years time warbling on about “These new Hyundai F1 cars clearly overstep the line when it comes to adjudicating fairness in comparison to old records. Their new tetradredodisestablishhydrobombfilm™ tyre extensions are something that the F1 racers of the noughties never had access to”, he’ d get thrown off his soap box faster than you can say Heideggerian nostalgia.

By logic of removing new swimwear because its so streamlined and ‘buoyant’, the advances in footwear for atheletes should be removed, so we should summarily strip Usain Bolt’s new record for wearing modern footwear, as we should any sportsman that’s used advanced javelins, or whatever. No one can legitimately expect the advances of technology not to do this, and swimwear should not suffer due to old record’s desire to be maintained. Out of question what on earth are the going to do with the new, swimwear ‘enhanced’ records set recently now that it has all been banned? Do they strike them from the record books, or do they keep them and make them summarily unfair?

Why textiles?

As I was listening on a triple j report, the dropping back of swimwear takes it to circa 1996 and will use textile-based and regulation sizing. But why exactly it is taken back to this level isn’t clear. If advances are to be taken back, shouldn’t we really level the playing field? I’m sure there are some 1910 Olympic records where they used boardshorts, or further still to Ancient Greece, wherein ancient records could be gleaned showing that the 50m breaststroke record was gained back then wearing loincloths interspersed with arrow heads, stabbing the swimmer’s every stroke. There is no particular reason, beyond as I said previously, the whingeing of recent record holder losers, that all advancements should be removed. Hell, make it naked then no one can complain, and probably increase the draw in ratings about tenfold.

But wait? What about other sports? Steroids?

This is not to say that all sports should embrace new advancements, but it should be the nature of the sport and the availiability of the advancement to determine. Team related sports where opponents are actively involved should not have an advancement unless it contributes to the game not the player. For example, when the aluminium cricket bats were introduced and quickly revoked in cricket, this was a good idea. The delineation isn’t hard here- opponent based sports aren’t looking neccessarily to set new records as the nature of their opponents is something that is constantly fluctuating. You may say that “Australia’s ’85 rugby squad was the best” but that’s conjecture, or only based upon the differences between that team and the surrounding opposition. If everyone in a swimming race has access to the same, advanced swimwear, then the winner is obviously the best swimmer, the nature of the advancement shouldn’t be a big issue here, and world records, while taken naturally with a pinch of salt, should not determine what advancements should or should not be allowed especially considering there’s no real way one can reasonably delineate where to stop them. This is similarly why Oscar Pitoris, the double amputee ‘blade runner’ should not be allowed in normal olympics- not everyone else on the track has the same access.

It’s fairly obvious steroids would be brought up here, as in “if you disagree with stopping advancements, why not allow steroids?” A couple of reasons. To start with, steroids are incredibly dangerous products to anyone who takes them. Secondly, there is a fair delineation here- anything that artificically actively alters hormones should be banned. That’s a line which is readily definable and subsequently applicable.

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~ by freeze43 on July 29, 2009.

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