Swimming news courtesy of Cameron Pfahler.
Swimming and Water Sport is one of the highest growing Sport area around the World. More activities will take place in a water. As we know water covers most of the earth and it’s most undiscovered nature. As mystery water is there is also undiscovered profession called Mermaid. We have seen movies about them, yogurt commercials and kids shows but we haven’t seen a Professional Mermaid yet who is still going hard in professional athletic field and trying to qualify to Rio 2016 Olympics like Estonian swimmer Merle Liivand.
Merle Liivand is more than just your normal competitive-breaststroke-
A couple of years ago, Liivand moved to South Florida from Estonia to pursue her competitive swimming career. “My first taste of Florida was during a visit with the Estonian Team,” Liivand says. “We trained in Plantation. I truly felt that I would like to return to Florida to train and live.” Now, it has been almost 5 years since she decided to move here to train. This created a tough schedule of traveling between Estonia and Florida. Not long ago, she considered quitting swimming. In a recent interview, she revealed the battle she had with a neck injury that almost ended her athletic career, a competitive career that has been the source of much of her happiness.
Entrepeneur and CEO in Swimming
Merle recognized she was still passionate about swimming after living life with consistant pain. Therefore, she decided to give back more than ever. Only two years ago, she opened her own company, called Swimera, back home in Estonia. “Swimera’s mission is to help every person of every age and every size to find the best tools and equipment for their favorite water sport! We truly believe we have the highest quality products for water sports and swimming fans. We are gladly here to help this community to grow. We work closely with the worldwide brands whose reputations stand out among their categories, especially in haircare, skincare, mermaid style fin swimming, open water equipment, pool equipment and nutrition.”
While she has her hands full building a retail business, Liivand also recognized that there is more to swimming than just competitions. “I found myself quickly immersed in Triathlon contests that Open Water competitions became part of my athletic life slowly. I have had great races like the Miami Men’s Triathlon where I picked up silver and bronze medals. Last year, I also won the SWIM MIAMI mile overall.” On her 25th birthday she did 10km Swim Miami race and collected money for saving lives foundation H2O- open water swimming was growing into her.
Motivated by her success in swimming competitions, she has made it her life mission to give back to her sport and its fans. She is now an ambassador for companies like FINIS, SBR Sports, Dermasport and Base Performance.
She also became an ambassador for the company World of Swimming, where she learned a new swimming technique inspired by mermaids. The training of this swimming style very closely resembles the butterfly kick techniques. She enjoyed this training so much that she dedicated herself to volunteer programs as part of her overall training work. “Basically it’s focused on FIN swimming and since I am a big believer in the power of the butterfly kick, I know that body position provides an excellent swimming foundation for aquatic skills.” One way she embraces becoming better in the water is by having fun.
“I love Mermaid lifestyle because it gives me opportunity to embrace to be different. We all are with different shape and size and we should not be measured by an athletic skill only! There are so many people who are scared of water and will never enjoy water because of the fear. It takes often my heart and emotionally I cry when I hear stories of drowning and people telling that they are scared to go closer to the water! By Mermaid Magical class many people have found themselves loving the feeling in the water. What else we can do to make water a safer and enjoyable place to be!?”
Liivand managed the many work streams involved with competitions and a retail business, as additional news landed on her plate.
2016 Olympic Year will be a good historical Swimming Year to Estonia
Merle Liivand is going to make an history for Estonia this weekend in Setubal. She will represent Estonia at the Olympic 10 km Marathon Swim Qualification race in Portugal. At this significant international competition, only 14 swimmers will qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. She is working hard to earn a place among the few Olympic spots available to compete.
“I feel honored to be invited to compete for an Olympic opportunity. This once-in-a-lifetime chance to make the 2016 Olympics really motivates me to keep up my intense swim training as much as possible. If it were not for my training in Florida, I don’t think I would have ever discovered open water swimming and be this close to realizing an Olympic Dream! She will represent over many years Estonia in International level and She will be together with younger swimmer Meribel Saar.”
“Estonia is a Nordic country where it is hard to train and be an open water Swimmer due to cold weather conditions. It’s new step on a female athlete side to compete in distance- marathon swimming. As being a once Baltic State champion in Breaststroke I hope that with my actions I get more swimmers from these regions to start considering Open Water swims! Why not to raise awareness and get more people to continue swimming in every age! Like I say – there is nothing better than having fun on a hard race!”