Swimming is one of the most popular forms of aerobic exercise, and it is an excellent activity for anyone who wishes to get fit and stay fit. You do NOT have to compete: less than one-third of US Masters Swimmers identify themselves as "competitors."
Read on to learn more about Masters swimming and Minnetonka Masters.
Masters swimming is an organized program of swimming for adults. Members may participate in a variety of ways, ranging from lap swimming for exercise, to training for competition in triathlons or swim meets.
Anyone 18 or older can join Masters swimming. United States Masters Swimming, Inc. (USMS) has more than 50,000 members, ranging from 18 years to more than 100! To compete, you must be registered with USMS. However, you do not need to compete to swim with Minnetonka Masters.
What is Minnetonka Masters versus Minnesota Masters versus USMS?
Minnetonka Masters, located in Minnetonka, is dedicated to providing options for a wide range of adult swimmers.
First and foremost is the opportunity to swim—whether for health, fitness, or training for competition—and the chance to meet people with similar interests.
Secondly, as our programs grow, we are committed to providing opportunities for competition. Minnetonka Masters hosted its first meet in 2011, and hopes to build on that event, continuing to provide a relaxed but professional atmosphere for competition. So, even if you have no interest in being a competitor, there is opportunity to build camaraderie by helping run swim meets and cheering on teammates.
Should you choose to compete, you must be a member of USMS, which provides the administrative structure for Masters swimming. As a competitor, you can register with USMS as part of the Minnetonka Masters, or as part of Minnesota Masters.
Minnesota Local Masters Swimming Committee (MN LMSC) governs Masters swimming in Minnesota and western Wisconsin. The primary goal of MN LMSC is to promote Masters swimming through meets (pool and open water), fitness and social events, and committee and community. MN LMSC is one of 52 LMSCs in the U.S. that carry out USMS’s mission. Minnetonka Masters is one of 24 clubs registered in MN LMSC.
The primary benefit of registering with Minnesota Masters (rather than Minnetonka Masters) is to swim on relays at meets. Minnetonka Masters may not have enough swimmers competing in a specific event or age group to form a relay; swimmers who train with different clubs can swim on the same relay if they are registered as a Minnesota Masters swimmer.
Is there any other benefit to joining USMS?
In addition to being able to compete, benefits of membership in USMS include:
Bi-monthly member publication SWIMMER magazine
Monthly member e-newsletter
Receive the monthly coaches e-newsletter
Create your own blog on the usms.org website
Share your photo album with the swimming community on the usms.org website
Create a personal usms.org email forwarding address to identify yourself as a member of our aquatic community and protect your own personal email address from spam
Track your fitness activities via our personal online fitness logs
Rent instructional videos from the U.S. Masters Swimming video library
Click HERE to see a more detailed list of benefits.