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Old 09-13-2011
KatieK KatieK is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Scottsdale, AZ, USA
Posts: 295

The US Masters Postal Swims are another really good way to get a sense of how your speed stacks up against other swimmers and to track your progress from one year to the next.

A Postal Swim is basically a virtual swim meet. You do the swim by yourself or with friends, and log your results online. It's based on the honor system.

You have to get someone to count your laps and time your 100-yard or 100-meter splits. The data you get from this is extremely helpful.

There are 5 of these per year.
  • 1-Hour Postal Swim in January: Swim as far as you can in an hour in any 25-yard, 25-meter, 50-meter or 50-yard pool.
  • 5K/10K May 15th-September 15th: Swim either 5K or 10K in a 50-meter pool. Or do both on separate days.
  • 3,000/6,000 Yards September 15th-November 15th: Swim 3,000 or 6,000 yards in either a 25-yard or 25-meter pool. Or do both on separate days

You have to be a USMS member to participate ($45/year, lots of benefits), and the Postal Swims are something like $11.00.

This is a fun, low-pressure way to get started in competition and get some useful data about your speed. There are about 3,000 participants in most of these.

Join USMS here:
The left side-bar at has info about all of the remaining Postal Swims for 2011.
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