Event Dates: Saturday July 28 – Saturday August 4
Medal Events: 34
Geeks on Sports previewer Tim Blacksmith here today to tell you all about Swimming, you think they’re swimming fast because they want to win…really it’s because there’s invisible piranhas in the water!
You may think I’m kidding about the piranhas, but why do you think Michael Phelps started smoking weed? Piranhas! But on a serious note: swimming is one of the most popular sports at the Olympics.
First off, there’s tons of events in both men’s and women’s categories. From short sprint-races like the 50M (one length of the pool) to the epic marathon-esque 10km race; imagine swimming for 10km (which is 6.2 miles to us silly Americans, or 32,808 feet) non-stop attempting to win a race! Most people don’t even run 10km that often. There’s a reason all those charity 10km “races” are run/walk optional.
There’s also the added intrigue of this being a mixture of individual and team competition, similar to gymnastics. Teammates will often race against one another in one event and then, an hour later, be working in tandem to win a medal as a team.
Possibly the biggest intrigue of these games for Swimming is the aforementioned Michael Phelps and his quest to obtain even more gold medals. In the 2008 Beijing games Phelps took home a whopping eight medals, a record. He could match that again this year.
Swimming is an easy sport to watch and enjoy. There’s always stiff competition, with run-away victories (if you’ll pardon me the expression) a rarity. Not only because it’s the Olympics and competition is stiff, but because these are incredible athletes struggling with every ounce of energy they can muster to keep moving their arms and legs to propel themselves forward. Most events consist of heats, like Track & Field race events (which don’t start will august 3rd) where the winners will move on to the championship swim.
With 34 medal events spread across a variety of race types and styles including both individual and medley events there’s something for everyone here. I highly recommend checking it out!
To see where to watch this or your other favorite sports, check out NBC’s coverage in your local area.
I hope you have enjoyed this preview of the 2012 London Olympics Swimming event. Continue to check 8DaysAGeek for more previews of Olympic events.
This is Geeks on Sports previewer Tim Blacksmith signing off.