Featured events

7-9 September 2012
Brussels Games

Brussels Gay Sports will offer a weekend of fun and fairplay in the capital of Europe, with volleyball, swimming, badminton, and tennis, as well as fitness and hiking.

Learn more HERE.
26-28 October 2012
Bern, Switzerland

The success of the first edition of the QueergamesBern proved the need for an LGBT multisport event in Switzerland. This year will be even bigger, with badminton, bowling, running, walking, floorball.

Learn more HERE.
17-20 January 2013
Sin City Shootout
Las Vegas
The 7th Sin City Shootout will feature softball, ice hockey, tennis, wrestling, basketball, dodgeball, bodybuilding and basketball.

Learn more HERE.

13-16 June 2013
IGLFA Euro Cup
After this year's edition in Budapest at the EuroGames, the IGLFA Euro Cup heads to Dublin for 2013, hosted by the Dublin Devils and the Dublin Phoenix Tigers.

Learn more HERE.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Why won't you be seeing any male synchronized swimmers in London this summer?

As we reported HERE, French daily paper Métro devoted a long article on the refusal of FINA to accept male swimmers in international synchronized swimming competitions. Here is a summary of the article which focuses on Paris Aquatique, a member club of FGG member organizations FSGL and IGLA: 

There is only one male synchronized swimming team in France, that of Paris Aquatique. They can compete in French national competitions, but are barred from international events, including the Olympics.

Christian Bordeleau (FGG sports coordinator for synchronized swimming) protests: Why is it considered a women's sport? Because it's artistic. You have to be a bit open minded to understand that an artistic sport can be practiced by men.

The best male French swimmers are ranked 11th nationally in duet. American swimmer Kenyon Smith and German swimmer Niklas Stoepel do have an international level.

The national technical advisor for the sport claims that the issue is one of a lack of sufficient participants: it's not possible to have international competitions until the sport is practiced by men in more countries.

Male swimmers admit that there are too few men to compete in a men's division, and are pushing for mixed-gender competitions, like those that take place nationally. FINA remains closed to the idea, which the Paris Aquatique trainer claims is pure discrimination.

While FINA rules speak of “swimmers”, without a reference to gender, forms and competitions remain closed to men.

With regard to the artistic nature of the sport, the men point out that while they may be less “graceful” than women, they offer other qualities, including strength. Some coaches appreciate the originality male swimmers can offer. They note that mixed-gender events take place in sports like figure skating, tennis, shooting, equestrian, etc.

1 comment:

Shamey Cramer said...

It was noted at the Women in Sport conference tonight that Synchro Swimming will be the ONLY sport that does not have gender parity at the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games. Very sad statement, indeed -even women Olympians and administrators are confounded by FINA's old-world stubbornness.