Thursday, 28 May 2015


Swimmers sometimes enquire about the relationship between Aquatics and NZMS. 

Aquatics NZ Inc. is FINA's agent in NZ. It is like a clearing house for communications which FINA has with Swimming, Diving, Water Polo, Synchro and Masters Swimming. Because the Masters Swimming movement comes under the umbrella of FINA, NZMS has to belong to Aquatics. Aquatics was set up in 2006 after 

its predecessor body was found to be an unsatisfactory vehicle for representing the interests of all of
the disciplines in NZ. So, Aquatics has a Board made up of representatives from Swimming, Diving, Water Polo, Synchro and Masters Swimming. Aquatics transact most of its business by email. If, for example, Swimming NZ wishes to have officials appointed by FINA to officiate at major international events those applications come through Aquatics for endorsement. Likewise, Aquatics nominates members for roles on the Oceania Swimming Federation, which is the geographical area to which NZ belongs. Two representatives from Oceania are on the FINA Bureau. The FINA Bureau is the main management committee of FINA. One important function of Aquatics is to present nominations from NZ for FINA committees. FINA runs its business through a large number of committees for the various disciplines and every four years nominations are made for membership of the committees. But whilst Aquatics tends to support any nomination which has been made by its member disciplines, within each of those disciplines there is sometimes considerable debate and discussion about what name or names will go forward for membership of the committee. 

Although NZMS does not have a great deal in common with Diving, Synchro and Water Polo, it does have a connection with Swimming NZ and some of our members belong to Swimming NZ and vice versa. Many Swimming NZ officials assist us at our Masters meets and there has generally been a very good relationship between Swimming NZ and Masters. 

Elections are held within Aquatics every two years for the appointment of a new Chairman. Each discipline has one vote around the board table. Delegates can be appointed to attend meetings but generally the only meeting in person is the Annual General Meeting held in October each year. NZMS pays an annual levy of $200.00 - $300.00 to Aquatics but for the last two years this has been suspended because Aquatics spends very little money and has had sufficient funds in its bank account to cover all needs. 

Within Masters Swimming NZ we tend not to see the wider ramifications of being part of FINA but it is a large organisation. Run by the FINA Bureau, it comprises a President, Honorary Secretary, Honorary Treasurer, Vice-Presidents and FINA Bureau members. Technical committees cover Swimming, Diving, Water Polo, Synchro, Open Water Swimming, High Diving, Masters, Sports Medicine, Athletes, Coaches, Media, Facilities, National Federation Relations, Legal, Swimmer Approval, Doping Control Review Board, Doping Panel, Disciplinary Panel and Ethics Panel. FINA has some 202 member countries. It is effectively the undisputed controlling organisation for the competitive sports under its umbrella which now include High Diving, and it has grown and developed over time. NZMS both must and should belong and we derive significant benefits from our connections through FINA. 

Roger Eagles

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