CHS Sports Science Swimming Overview

By: Lucas Driesenga

The Winter sports season, known to high school kids as the host for the most intense cardio sessions in high school.  The end of Thanksgiving break welcomes basketball, swimming and wrestling.  Swimming and Wrestling have a reputation for being some of the most physically challenging sports.  Extensive work outs, relentless training and some of the loudest hard nosed coaches on the high school’s athletic staff. Hamilton High School’s Swimming program is one of the most respected programs in the West Michigan Area.  Thanks to Coach Eric Talsma, The Boys and Girls Swim teams have seen the State Finals multiple times, but what goes into such success? What goes into the exhausting sport of Swimming? Well, there are several scientific aspects that go into what the teams do.

Swimmers must face with the struggle the lighter gravity of water while swimming. To achieve efficient movement through something as dense a water environment is one of the biggest challenges that swimmers face. The density of water is approximately 1,000 times greater than air. The goal of a perfectly performed swimming technique is to minimize the effects of physical forces on their bodies. If done right, the athlete is guaranteed to see excellent results. Swimmers must find ways of how to improve their position or arrow streamline and simultaneously reduce the area occupied by their body as it moves through the water. The streamline is one of the bread and butter ways to be much faster off of walls. By reducing the area around a submerged body, the resistance is reduced, which causes less disturbance in the surrounding water — very similar to the friction out of the water. This is why the position of the swimmer’s body is so important, and especially how they move their arms, and place the fingers in their hands.

Newton’s Second Law States: The acceleration of an object as produced by a net force is directly proportional to the magnitude of the net force, in the same direction as the net force, and inversely proportional to the mass of the object.  Newton’s Second Law of motion explains why some people can swim at faster speeds than others. The swimmer with the ability to exert more force compared to their body mass will accelerate and stay at a faster speed throughout a race. The acceleration in this situation was greater for the person who produced the greater force because the masses were the same. For example, if two swimmers with the same mass raced, the competitor with the greater force exerted on the water will win. A greater force produced by a person with a smaller mass will have the largest acceleration.

Girls swim and dive has recently finished their season with one podium appearance.

 The boys swim team has just started their winter season and Coach Talsma hopes for a good season, with lots of improvement.  They will compete in a quad on Saturday the 3rd.