Upon recommendation by its Technical Swimming Committee, the Ligue Européene de Natation (LEN) has approved new age groups proposed for the European Swimming Championships. We reported back in 2014 that the change was to take place 2016 and, as such, the new age ranges became effective January 1st of this year.
The 2016 LEN European Swimming Championships, which take place in London May 16-22nd, will thus serve as the first instance of the new minimum age for participation of 14 years for women and 15 years for men, as of December 31 of the year of competition.
For the European Junior Swimming Championships, women can compete within the age range of 14-17 years by the 31st December in the year of competition, and men 15-18 years by the same timeframe. The age range used to be 17-18 years old for boys and 15-16 years old for girls. The age groups have been changed accordingly within the LEN rankings, per the announcement to the announcement.
Also of major significance within the LEN announcement released today is that the concept of European Junior Records has now been established. European Junior Records will use the same rules as are in place for the European Records. The LEN’s General Event Rules E.6.1.1 contains the new verbiage:
E 6.1.1 Age groups for European Junior Records are: Men 15 – 18 years of age and Women 14 – 17 years of age by 31 December in the year of competition. European Junior Records to be recognised from 1 January 2016.
As was the case when World Junior Records were introduced, the LEN has established a list of ‘records’ or time standards that will serve as the baseline for the establishment of the actual European Junior Records. Both short course meters and long course meters times are provided in the document below and swimmers must surpass the marks at a sanctioned meet in order to become the newly-minted European Junior Record Holder.