Written and courtesy of Elizabeth Wickham
There’s a debate with swimmers, parents and fans on whether Ryan Lochte should be allowed to swim at the 2017 U.S. Masters Swimming Spring National Championship, April 27 – 30 in Riverside, CA. The reason for the debate goes back to sanctions against him from the 2016 Rio Olympics. This would be Lochte’s return to swimming although he’s still ineligible to compete at 2017 U.S. Nationals.
When you bring up Ryan Lochte’s name you hear a lot of opinions. Do you think it’s okay for U.S. Masters to allow Ryan Lochte to swim at their Spring Nationals short course meet? Or, should they follow USA Swimming’s spirit of the sanction and ban him?
I’ll be swimming at this meet with swimmers ages 18 through 95—and I’ve swam for less than two years in my life. I’m nervous and excited to be at a meet with Ryan Lochte. I think it’s great publicity to have someone of his caliber at a Masters meet—along with fellow Olympian Nathan Adrian. I’m looking forward to bragging to my kids—who are swimmers—that I swam at a meet with Ryan Lochte.
Because Lochte is not eligible to swim in the U.S. Nationals, he cannot qualify for the World Championships later this year. Should he be allowed to compete at all? What does Lochte have to gain by swimming at a U.S. Masters meet? What would he lose by not competing?
I conducted an informal survey with swimmers and swim parents. It was close to 90 percent that he should be allowed to swim, but there were strong feelings on both sides of the issue.
What is your opinion on Lochte swimming at the U.S. Masters meet? Should Lochte swim or not swim?
Elizabeth Wickham volunteered for 14 years on her kids’ club team as board member, fundraiser, newsletter editor and “Mrs. meet manager.” She’s a writer with a bachelor of arts degree in editorial journalism from the University of Washington with a long career in public relations, marketing and advertising. Her stories have appeared in newspapers and magazines including the Los Angeles Times, Orange County Parenting and Ladybug. You can read more parenting tips on her blog: http://bleuwater.me/.