Coronavirus Updates For the Synchro Community

The coronavirus COVID-19 has shaken the entire athletics community all over the world, and across virtually every sport. With so many cancellations, postponements and alterations to the training conditions of teams across the world, I wanted to create a single place to look for updates.

May 28, 2020 –

  • The Federal Medical and Biological Agency of Russia (FMBA), responsible for the medical support of the Russian national teams, has developed recommendations for preventing the spread of COVID-19 during training and camps at federal bases. It stated that it is now required “to exclude employees over 65 years old from any stages of the domestic and training process.” This includes Tatiana Pokrovskaya (synchro), as well as Irina Viner-Usmanova (RG), Andrei Rodionenko (AG) and Sergey Chepik (SW).

May 26, 2020 –

  • We all that one coming, but the FINA Junior World Championships have been officially postponed. There were originally scheduled for August 24 – 30 in Quebec City, Canada.

May 21, 2020 –

  • Some swimmers in Italy, like Giorgio Minisini and Lucrezia Ruggiero, have been able to return to the pool as well. Portugal and Hungary are also back to training.

May 19, 2020 –

  • Many more nations have now returned to the pool: Greece (full team), Spain (only those from Barcelona and around), France (only those from Paris and around), Slovakia, San Marino, Croatia, and New Zealand!

May 15, 2020 – 

  • The COMEN Cup has been cancelled.
  • Senior athletes from Switzerland and the Netherlands are back in the pool!

May 13, 2020 – 

  • The Asian Swimming Championships, due to take place in the Philippines between November 7 and 17, have been pushed to 2021.

May 8, 2020 – 

  • Australia has resumed training at the Western Australian Institute of Sport!

May 5, 2020 – 

  • The Olympic Games Qualification Tournament has been rescheduled to March 4 – 7, 2021. It had originally been pushed to June 2020, before the official postponement of the Olympic Games.
  • The European Championships have been rescheduled to May 10 – 23, 2021. The event was first scheduled for May 11 – 24, 2020, but had been postponed a first time to August 2020.

May 4, 2020 – 

  • The next FINA World Championships originally set for the summer of 2021 have been pushed to May 2022. They had to be rescheduled following the postponement of the Olympics to summer 2021.

May 1, 2020 – 

  • LEN has cancelled the Junior European Championships, scheduled for June 24 to 28 in Malta.

April 30, 2020 – 

  • Israel has returned to the pool at the Wingate Institute!
  • The Alexandri sisters from Austria have also returned to training.

April 18, 2020 – 

  • The Cancun Open has been postponed, and may be rescheduled in August or September.
  • The French Swimming Federation has cancelled all of its national championships across all aquatic sports and all age groups until the end of the June. These include the senior and 13-15 nationals as well as the previously postponed junior nationals.

April 6, 2020 – 

  • FINA has cancelled the remainder of the world series circuit.

April 2, 2020 – 

  • The UANA Pan American Championships scheduled for August 31 – September 6 in Aruba has been postponed.
  • A gymnastics athlete at the Novogorsk training base in Russia has tested positive to COVID-19, along with head coach Andrei Rodonienko. All swimmers on the artistic swimming team have tested negative, but all have been sent home from the base.

March 31, 2020 – 

  • USA Artistic Swimming has cancelled its world series event, originally scheduled for June 12 – 14 in Rochester, Mich.
  • The Spanish federation has suspended its entire sporting calendar, so the Spanish Open (May 29 – 31) in Madrid is currently “on hold” (but let’s be real, it’s probably not happening, on those dates at the very least).

March 30, 2020 – 

  • The IOC has announced that the rescheduled Olympics will started on July 23, 2021 in Tokyo, and will run until August 8, 2021.
  • The training center at Round Lake near Moscow has been closed. The Russian artistic swimming team has moved to another training center still in the vicinity of Moscow in Novogorsk.

March 27, 2020 – 

  • The Canadian National Championships, scheduled for May 4 – 9 in Quebec City, have been cancelled.

March 24, 2020 – 

  • The Olympic Games have officially been postponed, and they “must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021.”

March 23, 2020 – 

  • Canada and Australia will not send athletes to the Olympic Games in Tokyo if they are held on schedule because of the risks associated with the virus. Both countries’ Olympic committees are calling for the Games to be postponed until 2021.
  • The Russian Nationals, originally scheduled from April 13 – 17 in Kazan, have been postponed to a later date. The federation was originally going to hold the event behind closed doors, but the Minister of Sports recommended on March 21 that all sporting events in our country be suspended, rescheduled or canceled.

March 22, 2020 – 

  • Following an emergency Executive Board meeting, the IOC has released a statement saying it gives itself four weeks to make a decision regarding the Olympics, and is contemplating different options including postponement. It emphasized the complexity of the scenario-planning it’s undertaking, but also specified that cancellation was not on the table.

March 20, 2020 – 

  • The European Championships have been postponed to tentatively August 17 – 30 in Budapest.

March 19, 2020 – 

  • The Olympic Games Qualification Tournament has been postponed to June.
  • I literally have no idea who is still training at this point except Russia.

March 18, 2020 – 

  • USA Artistic Swimming has suspended the training of its senior national team for at least three weeks.
  • Canada‘s senior team is in self-isolation.
  • All pools are closed in Germany. The duet of Marlene Bojer and Daniela Reinhardt join the list of athletes training at home for the time being.
  • The Swiss federation has cancelled every competition until May 3. It includes the Swiss Nationals (Apr 4 – 5) and the Swiss Youth International Competition (May 1 – 3).
  • The Swiss duet of Vivienne Koch and Noemi Peschl is also now in quarantine.
  • Pools are closed in Chile, where all national team athletes also face quarantine.

March 17, 2020 – 

  • The Swim England Artistic Swimming Nationals (Apr 18 – 19) have been cancelled.

March 16, 2020 – 

  • USA Artistic Swimming has suspended the training of its junior national team for at least two weeks.
  • All swimming pools in Hungary have been closed, thus affecting the senior national team.
  • All sports venues in Serbia are closed. Serbia’s senior duet of Jelena Kontic and Nevena Dimitrijevic are not longer able to train for the time being.
  • All sports venues in Slovakia are closed, and the nation is under quarantine until at least the end of the month. All national team athletes have been impacted, and have to workout at home.
  • All pools are closed in Portugal. The nation’s senior duet of Maria Goncalves and Cheila Vieira is no longer able to train for the time being.
  • Peru‘s national team will also miss two weeks of training due to quarantine.

March 15, 2020 – 

  • The Dutch Olympic Committee*Dutch Sports Federation (NOC*NSF) has decided to suspend all elite athletics programs. Bregje and Noortje de Brouwer now join the long list of artistic swimmers who can’t train for the foreseeable future.

March 14, 2020 – 

  • Spain has closed its CAR (Centre d’Alt Rendiment) national training center in Barcelona, where the Spanish national team trains at.
  • Australia has cancelled its Australian Open and Age Group National Championships (Apr 2 – 6).
  • On a lighter note, the best quarantine workout of the day goes to Linda Cerruti, who is using Nutella jars as weights.

March 13, 2020 –

MEET UPDATES:

  • FINA has “postponed to a further date” the Artistic Swimming World Series in Egypt (Mar 27 – 29), Hungary (Apr 9 – 11), and Russia (Apr 17 – 19).
  • In the same press release, FINA states that the Olympic Qualification Tournament in Tokyo is still on. The international federation does not anticipate any changes regarding this event as of March 12. It is now up to the IOC and the Tokyo Organizing Committee to decide what the next step and precautions should be regarding this meet.
  • The National Junior Championship of Serbia and the Memorial Tournament Maja Kos (Mar 14 – 15) have been postponed.
  • The ORKA Cup in Hungary (Mar 20 – 22) has been postponed to a further date. The Hungarian federation has also postponed all of its nationals that were scheduled throughout the month of April.
  • The U.S. Collegiate Nationals (Mar 26 – 29) are cancelled, and the U.S. Nationals are postponed to a further date.
  • The Spanish winter junior and senior national championships (Mar 27 – 29) have been cancelled.
  • The Finnish Open Youth Championships (Mar 27 – 29) have been cancelled.
  • The French junior nationals (Mar 31 – Apr 5) have been postponed until the fall.
  • The South American Championships (Apr 2 – 5) have been postponed to a later date by the Argentinian government.
  • The Greek Swimming Federation has cancelled the Artistic Swimming World Series leg (Apr 3 – 5) in Alexandroupoli.

TRAINING UPDATES:

  • The Italians have been stuck in their homes since the country went on full lockdown on March 9. The national team athletes have taken to sharing some of their daily home workouts on their social media accounts, including doing squats while carrying another person, jump roping with a dog, or doing biceps pulls with a luggage.
  • France is closing its INSEP (Institut national du sport, de l’expertise et de la performance) national training center in Paris on Monday, March 16 for at least two weeks. It is where the French senior national team trains year-round. All clubs have also been advised to suspend training and local competitions.
  • The Greek Swimming Federation has also ordered the end of all training activities of its national teams.
  • The Bay Area pools near San Francisco have been closed, thus affecting the U.S. senior and junior national teams.
  • After being stuck in limbo in Latvia and Lithuania, the Israel national team is heading home where it will have to face mandatory at-home quarantine for the next 15 days due to its travels in France.
  • Austria has closed all of its pools, effectively affecting all national team athletes. The federation is also encouraging all clubs to suspend training.

This article will continue to be updated as more information becomes available.

Article by Christina Marmet

Cover photo: Adam Pretty/Getty Images Europe

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