Get your news fix on happenings outside the pool with the latest ‘Beyond the Lane Lines.’ With each edition, we collect personal stories, little known facts and general items of interest from around the world. Read on and learn something new this week.
#1 Katsuhiro Matsumoto Back to Training
23-year-old Katsuhiro Matsumoto is back in the water as of mid-April, picking up his in-pool training where he left off prior to the height of the coronavirus pandemic.
Matsumoto, who took the silver medal in the men’s 200m freestyle at last year’s World Championships, is a member of Central Sports in Tokyo, Japan. Other members of the group under the tutelage of head coach Yoji Suzuki include Miho Teramura, Yui Yamane, and Kohinata Kazuki.
Due to coronavirus measures at the facility, Suzuki says his squad is now only training once per day, as opposed to their usual twice-a-day routine, swimming about 4,000 meters at a time. Also, to reduce the risk of coronavirus, the squad is practicing in 3 separate groups, with 5 to 8 people at a time. (Hochi News)
#2 Use Your (Pool) Noodle
As more public places such as stores and restaurants are slowly reopening around the world with the flattening of the coronavirus curve, consumers are taking precautions to keep healthy when heading back to their favorite hangouts. Measures taken span from the fairly typical face covering to the creative end of the safety spectrum, which, in this case, involves using pool noodles as a way to promote social distancing.
As captured by European podcaster Katy Lee’s Instagram account, patrons of an outdoor cafe in Germany have donned straw hats with two swimming noodles attached to the top. With the noodles flared out to the sides, the contraptions serve to physically enforce the suggested ‘six feet away’ social distancing rule.
Oh my god, this is amazing. A German cafe is making people wear swimming pool noodles as hats to enforce social distancing.
— Katy Lee (@kjalee) May 14, 2020
#3 New Pool Planned for Somerset School
Mendip School near Shepton Mallet in Somerset, England has revealed intentions to build a new indoor swimming facility. The estimated £1.5m pool would be available to school students, with the idea that the general public would also be able to access the new pool at certain times.
Per Somerset Live, public interest is been taken into account, with the conditions placed on the project’s approval stipulating that there be some way of making the pool publicly available when not in school use.
Funded by an application by the Bath and Mendip Partnership Trust, the pool would help fill the need of ensuring students are taught ‘an essential skill associated with health and wellbeing, increasing access to swimming for all.’ (Somerset Live)
#4 Hans Spijkerman of the Netherlands Dies at 72
Former Dutch national recorded holder, 72-year-old Hans Spijkerman, died in Zwolle, the Netherlands after a long-time illness.
Spijkerman became the Dutch national champion in the men’s 200m breaststroke in 1965 at just the age of 17. During the period of 1965-1968 Spijkerman went on to set numerous national records across the 100m and 200m short course breaststroke events, becoming the first Dutchman to dip under 1:10m in the 100m race at the 1968 Polish Open Championships.
After his active career, Spijkerman remained affiliated with the Zwolle club, serving as chairman for many years.
He was quoted as saying, “What my parents have always told us is that if you do something, you have to go for it. If you were in a sport, you had to go to the training, even if you were not in the mood to do it. After all, the trainer was there especially for you.” (De Stentor)