July 15, 2014
Top 50 Swim Cities
MADISON, Wis. -- When you're able to call a place like Madison home, swimming and diving at the University of Wisconsin is special. The rest of the country is beginning to take notice. In a nationwide survey conducted by USA Swimming and Speedo, the city of Madison was ranked No. 7 in the nation among best swim cities.
The study also highlighted that Madison ranks second of all cities on the index for USA Swimming members.
Last fall, four Badgers (Nick Caldwell, Drew teDuits, Ivy Martin and Michael Weiss) were named to the 2013-14 U.S. National Swimming Team roster. Wisconsin's four student-athletes tied for second most U.S. National Team members of any combined program in the country.
According to the USA Swimming survey released Monday, the city of Madison was also found to be among the best in the country for its number of facilities within city limits.
Perhaps highlighting the continued growth of swimming and diving in Madison is the announced new $26 million competition pool, included as part of the University of Wisconsin recreational sports renovations to the Southeast Recreational Facility (SERF) near the Kohl Center on the UW campus. Construction is planned to begin in 2017, with the 50-meter pool ready for swimming meets in 2019.
The USA Swimming swim cities ranking index was developed through a comparison of each city's swim-related attributes relative to the overall U.S. population.
According to USA Swimming, key elements that factored into the study were number of current USA swimming members, number of masters swimmers and number of USA swimming clubs. Also considered by the study was the number of qualifying swimmers for high level competitions like the Speedo Champions Series, Speedo Junior Nationals, Phillips 66 National Swimming Championships, Olympic Trials and the Olympic Games, as well as Sports & Fitness Industry Association (SFIA) participation data, including the numbers of competitive and fitness swimmers, and the number of swim facilities open to the public in each city.
The study was commissioned by USA Swimming and Speedo in partnership with SRi and Sports Marketing Surveys, the official research provider to the Sports & Fitness Industry Association.