Where are the fastest master butterfly swimmers competing in the FINA World Masters Championships from?


  • Katja Weiss Institute of Primary Care, University of Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1247-6754
  • Aldo Seffrin Postgraduate Program in Translation Medicine, Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8229-8565
  • Marilia Santos Andrade Department of Physiology, Federal University of São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil https://orcid.org/0000-0002-7004-4565
  • Wais Ahmad Sanatorium Kilchberg, Kilchberg, Switzerland https://orcid.org/0009-0008-8167-9372
  • Pedro Forte CI-ISCE, Higher Institute of Educational Sciences of the Douro, Penafiel, Portugal; Department of Sports Sciences, Instituto Politécnico de Bragança, Bragança, Portugal; Research Center in Sports, Health and Human Development, Covilhã, Portugal https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0184-6780
  • Sascha Moreitz Radiology and Neuroradiology, Institute of Radiology, Spital Zollikerberg, Zurich, Switzerland https://orcid.org/0009-0007-3793-8472
  • Arkadiusz Stanula Institute of Sport Sciences, Department of Swimming and Water Rescue, Academy of Physical Education in Katowice, Katowice, Poland https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1759-6456
  • Ivan Cuk Faculty of Sport and Physical Education, University of Belgrade, Belgrade, Serbia https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7819-4384
  • Pantelis T. Nikolaidis School of Health and Caring Sciences, University of West Attica, Athens, Greece https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8030-7122
  • Beat Knechtle Medbase St. Gallen am Vadianplatz, Vadianstrasse 26, 9001 St. Gallen, Switzerland. Tel. +41 (0) 71 226 93 00, FAX +41 (0) 71 226 93 01, E-mail: beat.knechtle@hispeed.ch https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2412-9103




swimming, performance, nationality, origin, records


While the butterfly stroke has received considerable attention in sports science, the origin of the fastest master butterfly swimmers remains unknown. The present study investigated which geographical locations produce the top-performing master butterfly swimmers within their age groups and gender. A total of 26,512 master butterfly swimmers (11,288 women and 15,224 men) competed in 50 m, 100 m and 200 m races in World Masters Championships held between 1986 and 2019. From each swimmer, the year of competition, first name, last name, age group and distance were recorded. Descriptive data were presented using mean, standard deviation, maximum and minimum values, and/or confidence intervals. The top 10 race times for master butterfly swimming and gender were identified for descriptive purposes. Nationalities were then grouped into six categories: the top five nationalities with the most appearances in the top 10 fastest times in butterfly swimming by distance each year and one group consisting of all other nationalities. In the event of a tie, the nationality with the most participants overall was selected. Generalized linear models (GLMs) with a gamma probability distribution and log link function were used to assess the effect of age groups and gender on swimming time. In summary, Germany had the fastest women butterfly master swimmers across all distances, while the USA had the fastest men butterfly master swimmers for all distances. Men covered all distances faster than women and younger swimmers were quicker than older swimmers. The results of this study can be utilized to determine the countries that produce the most successful master butterfly swimmers, providing a foundation for further research to explore the factors that lead to their success.



How to Cite

Weiss, K., Seffrin, A., Andrade, M. S., Ahmad, W., Forte, P., Moreitz, S., Stanula, A., Cuk, I., Nikolaidis, P. T., & Knechtle, B. (2023). Where are the fastest master butterfly swimmers competing in the FINA World Masters Championships from?. EXCLI Journal, 22, 604–619. https://doi.org/10.17179/excli2023-6199



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