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Unintentionally Hilarious Quote of the Day

January 26, 2010

In a recent paper examining the rate of improvement in top performances by track and field athletes and swimmers, Berthelot et al. write:

“The recent progression period in swimming results owes much to the introduction of swimsuits. This new technology, allowed by FINA in 1999, enhances hydrodynamic penetration and largely reduces drag forces.”

The authors conclude that the progression of human performances in these sports may soon reach its limit. Interesting, but what’s more disconcerting to me is that, according to the authors, I spent the majority of my swimming career swimming naked—and I didn’t even know it.

The paper is available here.

Berthelot G, Tafflet M, El Helou N, Len S, Escolano S, et al. (2010) Athlete Atypicity on the Edge of Human Achievement: Performances Stagnate after the Last Peak, in 1988. PLoS ONE 5(1): e8800. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0008800

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