Which costume

With tonight’s Essex County 800 meter race approaching, I am pondering which costume to take. Madison owns a variety of costumes, all of varying quality and fit.

The more expensive costumes are the tightest fit and take the longest to get on. At the Christmas at Dagenham qualifying meet, there was little time between the warm-up and the heats and changing from a warm-up costume to a quality racing costume would take at least half hour, just for the costume.

When I watch Olympics, world championships, nationals, I always see the swimmers wait in the marching in area for quite a while prior to their races and so they seem to have plenty of time to prepare the outfits.

Racing costumes, which are water repellant, often last for only 12 races before they lose their top qualities. But it is only possible to put them on if there is plenty of time between warm-up and marching in.

Of course on County meets, the amount of swimmers is enormous, so as much swimmers as possible get the change to improve. Many events are tightly packed inside the scheduled pool time.

Perhaps we have to commit a sin and wear the competition costume at warm-up because there may not be enough time to change between warm-up and the marching in for the first event. Or we put on a less expensive costume, which may slow the time. Another solution is to put on the racing costume for warm-up but wear a cheaper costume on top. the cheaper costume protects the expensive one and can easily be taken off for the races, when there is not enough time after warm up to change.

Be aware it is against ASA and FINA rules to wear more than one costume at a licensed competition.

With growing kids the costumes do not last forever, they wear out because of the child’s growth or they wear out because of wear and tear. Either way a racing costume often increases the swimmer’s confidence and races seem faster.

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