Aug 31 2009

This is the question everyone is asking...

Here is a story on the issue from

Here is an answer from the WIAA

Suits, Suits, Suits...

Two weeks ago I emailed Tom Shafranski at the WIAA to give the coaches/parents some guidance as to the new suit rule... specifically what suits are now legal. Below is the response I received...

Thanks for the note and question regarding what suits are legal and which are not.    The NFHS is indicating they will not be providing a list of legal or illegal suits this year.  See the question and response below that has been posted in the WIAA School Center under Swimming and Diving:

Will there be a list of approved suits?

NFHS--No, there is no plan this year to have a list of approved suits. The limits in style/shape, the elimination of
zippers and/or fastening systems, the requirement of a textile suit of a woven or knit material and the require-
ment of the suit being permeable to water and air should take care of having the swimmers in legal suits.

With this NFHS response in mind, below you will find some additional information that I have organized based upon recent interpretations from the NFHS:

  1. Only one swim suit shall be permitted to be worn in competition.  Two suits should be relatively easy to identify.

  2. A suit that does not meet the size/style restriction for girls and for boys should also be easy to identify.

  3. Any zipper on a suit is a good indication of a violation.

  4. The construction must meet all of the requirements in the rule-textile, permeable, no zippers (fastening system), size, and can't aid in buoyancy.  If the suit does not meet all requirements of the rule, the suit will not be considered legal.

  5. If parts of the the suit are permeable and other parts are not, the suit is not a legal suit.

  6. "Textile" is defined as a material consisting of natural and/or synthetic, individual non-consolidated yarns used to constitute a fabric by knitting, weaving or braiding.  Lycra, Spandex, Polyridge, Speedline, Streamline and PBT (texturized polyester) are considered textile materials. Coaches can check the clothing tabs found on the inside of the suit or with the manufacturers for the material/fabric their suits are made of.

  7. Any suit that has coating on it (i.e., plastic, rubber, foreign substance) that can be clearly seen may not be used for competition.

I'll be including this information in the next WIAA Bulletin edition and adding it to the WIAA Bulletin in a few weeks.  Just want to wait a short while for any additional issues that might develop.