Yesterday, Swimswam published a far-reaching and extensive interview that I spoke about a couple weeks ago. I appreciate that Swimswam published all of my answers in full, and asked some very good questions throughout.
I hope that Swimswam continues to cover this issue, and I will continue to push them to do so. They are by far the most read website in Swimming, and to the extent that they publish stories and voices they will help a lot to change things for the better.
I've received mostly positive response for the post. Two criticisms left by anonymous commenters were entirely expected. I publish responses here only to help others deal with similar criticisms.
The first challenged me on the ground that I haven't coached any American National Team members. This criticism highlights two things: one is that somehow being in geographic proximity to fast swimmers makes your opinions more valuable. Lol.
The second is something we should think about: the most powerful coaches won't come anywhere near talking about this (although credit to Matt Kredich for doing so).
Finally, a frequent criticism that I don't participate in USA Swimming governance was repeated. I do have plans to attend my LSC meeting this May (in NJ). I will pursue governance options to the extent that it helps me to effect change on the issues I care about. I have seen how silencing participating in USA Swimming governance tends to be (can you hear their crickets right now) so, it doesn't seem like I would be long for that world anyway.
Kaylen Ralph has written an excellent piece for Glamour.com about the dearth of women at the Elite level of coaching. I gave a brief interview for the article, which I think ended up being really well done and sourced.
Ralph spoke to Susan Teeter, Nancy Hogshead Makar, Kathleen Klein Prindle and more for the piece. Noticeably absent was USA Swimming, except for citing some statistics about how many women there are on their coaching membership rolls.
USA Swimming should be embarrassed at how they had weeks to effectively participate in this piece and couldn't. Millions of dollars are being spent on staff salaries over there, and they seem incapable of basic organizational tasks. The longer they make basic responses, the farther and farther they fall behind. The "ignore everything" tactic will not work this time.
Later today I'll have a podcast with Matt Finnigan, aka the Race Swami. Check back for that later!