Jamaica will be among an international lineup of participants in the first-ever UANA Virtual Artistic Swimming Competition. The inaugural event takes place on June 20, 2020. The competition will be held via ZOOM due to the COVID-19 pandemic and routines will take place completely on land.
The event is designed to keep swimmers’ skills sharp since events around the globe have been delayed and/or canceled – and pools closed – due to the pandemic. Each athlete will compete from their home. Competitors will be evaluated by FINA/UANA officials and overseen by evaluators Gabriela Viglino and Diane van der Pol.
Athletes that win the UANA competition will advance to the World Wide Virtual Artistic Swimming Competition that will take place on Sunday, Aug. 1, 2020. The date was chosen as it would have been the night before the beginning of the Tokyo 2020 Artistic Swimming event.
The Team Jamaica athletes that will be competing are:
- 12 and Under – Joydayne Whyte in Burpees and Cailyn Morgan for Y Position
- 13-15 Years – Sarah Anderson for Burpees and Y Position
- Junior – Regan Griffiths in Burpees and Nyouka Baugh for Y Position
- Senior – Ajoni Llewelyn for Burpees and Y Position
The response to the land-based training and virtual competition has been met with enthusiasm around the world. Nineteen federations have registered to compete in the challenge. Artistic swimming is relatively new as an Olympic discipline and recognizes it as the highly athletic endeavor that it is.
Artistic swimming has roots that began in water acrobatics. It was sometimes referred to as water ballet, featured in films, and was popularized in the U.S. It combines strength, endurance, and gymnastics with grace, creativity, and the art of dance into a whole that’s breathtaking to watch. Artistic swimming was added to the Olympics in 1984.