Saturday, July 16, 2011

Relative Interest in Swimming by State [Chart]

ratio of high school swimming partitipants to state population map

This visualization was really fun to make! I started with NFHS data for 2009-2010 state high school swimming and diving participants (for some reason, Idaho, Tennessee and South Dakota were missing data). Next, I divided number of high school swimming participants by 2010 Census state population data and multiplied by 1000.

The result is a heat map of what I’m calling “relative interest in swimming” as represented by the number of high school swimming participants per 1000 state residents. So for every 1000 residents, this number represents how many high school swimmers you would find. It’s a little clumsy, but should give you some idea in the level of interest the states have in high school swimming.

I was actually surprised to see some of the states with smaller populations (such as Wyoming) actually have a disproportional participation in swimming – so with fewer high school students overall, they had the highest relative interest in swimming.

The top 5 states with the most high school swimmers relative to state population were: Minnesota (1.65), Wyoming (1.65), Deleware (1.62), Pennsylvania (1.55) and Connecticut (1.35).

Even though the number of high school swimmers in California (48,483) and Texas (14,286) are impressive stats, these states end up 8th and 41st in respective interest level because of their large state populations.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Change in Average High School Swim Team Roster Size 1970-2010 [Graph]

I found a data set on the National Federation of State High Schools Associations website that listed number of schools with swimming and diving programs, and the total number of participants for boys and girls. To determine average roster size, I simply divided the total number of participants by the number of schools offering programs.

average high school swim team size graph

The resulting graph shows a cross-over point where a number of factors caused girls’ team size to increase while boys’ team size decreased. It’s difficult to determine what factors (budget, interest, accessibility, etc.) contribute to changes in team size, but I’m guessing Title IX (1972) had a lot to do with it.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Student Swimmer Sucked Through Fractured Underwater Viewing Window

student swimmer underwater viewing window

My friend Mitch just Facebooked me this piece of news! A story from Channel 3000 reports that a 17-year-old Wisconsin student and physical education teacher were injured when an underwater viewing window shattered while students were in the pool.

According to the story, the gushing water pulled the student through the fractured window and into a mechanical room. Read the full story on

This is shocking news! What a frightening scenario, I can’t imagine what it must have been like.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Alec Baldwin As The “Angry Swim Coach” On Saturday Night Live

Alec Baldwin captures the essence of an angry swim coach in this SNL spoof of an awards banquet.

“I’ll try to keep my remarks brief – considering I’m suppose to say nice things, that shouldn’t be a problem…”

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

In Brief…

kast-a-way swimwear in brief

> Snow could have lasting effect on swimmers Reach For The Wall
> Friday Food Fact: Travel Meet Eating Tips Garrett Weber-Gale
> The Truth Behind Lochte

Monday, January 25, 2010

Frank Busch To Speak At Ursuline Academy Hall Of Fame Induction

frank busch

I got an email from Sue with some information of local interest. She took the time to write a little bit about the induction of the Ursuline Academy 1991 State Championship swim team into their Sports Hall of Fame, along with some background on the nationally and internationally renowned coach, Frank Busch, who will be speaking at the event.

Rather than re-wording her synopsis, I’ll post what she wrote:

On Saturday, April 17th, Ursuline Academy in Blue Ash will induct their 1991 state championship swim team into their Sports Hall of Fame. What may be of interest to your readers is that the featured speaker will be Frank Busch.

Frank is in his 21st year at The University of Arizona and has a long history with Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky Swimming. Many, many people in the local swimming community know and love Frank. Busch began a four year career with the Northern KY Piranhas (1974-1978), followed by a year with the senior program of the Cincinnati Marlins. He began his long service in the coaching ranks at the University of Cincinnati (1980-1989), where both teams broke into the Division I Top 20.

In 2008, Frank became only the second coach in NCAA swimming history to coach both the men’ and women’s teams to national championship titles in the same season.

Coach Busch has been named NCAA Coach of the Year six times and is an 11-time Pac-Ten Coach of the Year. In 1998, Busch was named Coach of the Year by both USA Swimming and the United States Olympic Committee. He has been selected by United States Swimming to serve on numerous coaching staffs, including the 2004 and 2008 Olympics.

Admission includes cocktails and heavy appetizers. For tickets and sponsorship information your readers can contact Sue Mackey, Ursuline Sports Hall of Fame Chair at 513-583-5614 or 884-4266.

Thanks for the info, Sue! If anyone else has some relevant swimming news, announcements, or press releases they would like to promote, email me at (Hint: If you write something in press release format, I can just copy and paste it).

Also, feel free to share links on the Kast-A-Way Swimwear page on Facebook.

Monday, January 25, 2010

In Brief…

kast-a-way swimwear in brief

> WeAreHandsome take swimsuit graphics to the next level SCAQ Blog
> NeroTX Approved by NCAA SwimTechGeek
> Revival of the Husky Invitational The Screaming Viking!
> Fueled by fat: Fat burning 101 The Science Of Sport
> The Marge Simpson of my team The Screaming Viking!
> High School Senior describes what it is like to swim with Michael Phelps! SCAQ Blog
> FINA Bureau Votes to Keep Swimming World Records Swimming World Magazine
> What Made the Hi-Tech Suits Effective? Swimming Science
> Embed Instagram into Blogger

Monday, December 28, 2009

Gold Medalist Dan Ketchum Coaching High School In Cincinnati

dan ketchum

Local swimming hero, Dan Ketchum, has returned to the swimming scene in a coaching role at Loveland High School. As a former state champion, NCAA champion, and Olympic gold medalist, Ketchum brings the personal experience of an elite level swimmer to his new coaching job.

From an article on found via @GoSwim, Ketchum says that he has learned how to get swimmers to operate as a team rather than a group of individuals. And although Loveland is not known as a swimming powerhouse, Ketchum plans on making some changes (source).

Monday, November 23, 2009

Whitney Myers Sets American Record In 200 IM At World Cup

whitney myers is a local!

My Google Reader gave me some great news this morning with results coming from the FINA World Cup meet in Singapore. Whitney Myers (hometown: Oxford, OH) set a new American Record in the 200 IM in a time of 2:06.20 (source). Myers has been a local celebrity in the Cincinnati swimming community for some time, but this latest achievement will not go unnoticed.

Whitney has been on the USA Swimming national team for years, has previously taken gold in the 200 IM at the 2006 Pan Pacific Games, and was named NCAA Woman of the Year in 2007 (source). In college, she swam for the University of Arizona. Since graduating, she’s still out west swimming for Tucson Ford Dealer Aquatics.

For you locals, you should already know that Whitney’s hometown of Oxford, OH is also the home of my alma mater, Miami University. In high school, Whitney swam for girls D1 powerhouse Ursuline Academy, where she led the Lions to 3 State Championships and made All American honors all 4 years.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Chocolate Milk Named Official Beverage Of Ohio High School Sports



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