Swimming at the World Aquatics Championships

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Michael Phelps—pictured here (right) at the 2005 World Championships– is currently the holder of 22 World Championship gold medals – more than any other athlete.

The aquatics discipline of swimming has been the core component of every edition of the FINA World Aquatics Championships since its introduction in 1973. In 1991, open water swimming events were introduced to the program of the World Championships.

Championships[edit]

Year Date Edition Location Events (men/women/mixed) Winner of the medal table Second in the medal table Third in the medal table
Long course Open water
1973 August 31 – September 9 I Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Belgrade, Yugoslavia 15 / 14 / 0 0 / 0 / 0  East Germany  United States  Australia
1975 July 19 – 27 II Colombia Cali, Colombia 15 / 14 / 0 0 / 0 / 0  United States  East Germany  Hungary
1978 August 20 – 28 III West Germany West Berlin, West Germany 15 / 14 / 0 0 / 0 / 0  United States  Soviet Union  Australia
1982 July 29 – August 8 IV Ecuador Guayaquil, Ecuador 15 / 14 / 0 0 / 0 / 0  East Germany  United States  Soviet Union
1986 August 13 – 23 V Spain Madrid, Spain 16 / 16 / 0 0 / 0 / 0  East Germany  United States  West Germany
1991 January 3 – 13 VI Australia Perth, Australia 16 / 16 / 0 1 / 1 / 0  United States  Hungary  Germany
1994 September 1 – 11 VII Italy Rome, Italy 16 / 16 / 0 1 / 1 / 0  China  Australia  United States
1998 January 8 – 17 VIII Australia Perth, Australia 16 / 16 / 0 2 / 2 / 2  United States  Australia  China
2001 July 16 – 29 IX Japan Fukuoka, Japan 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 0  Australia  United States  Italy
2003 July 12 – 27 X Spain Barcelona, Spain 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 0  United States  Australia  Russia
2005 July 16 – 31 XI Canada Montreal, Canada 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 0  United States  Australia  Germany
2007 March 18 – April 1 XII Australia Melbourne, Australia 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 0  United States  Australia  Russia
2009 July 17 – August 2 XIII Italy Rome, Italy 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 0  United States  Germany  Australia
2011 July 16 – 31 XIV China Shanghai, China 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 1  United States  China  Brazil
2013 July 19 – August 4 XV Spain Barcelona, Spain 20 / 20 / 0 3 / 3 / 1  United States  China  France
2015 July 24 – August 9 XVI Russia Kazan, Russia 20 / 20 / 2 3 / 3 / 1  United States  Australia  China

Future championships[edit]

Year Date Edition Location
2017 June 30 – July 16 XVII Hungary Budapest, Hungary[1]
2019 TBA XVIII South Korea Gwangju, South Korea[2][3][4]
2021 TBA XIX TBA

Events[edit]

The number of events competed for at each edition of the championships has grown steadily through the years. In 1973, 29 events were swum: 15 events for men and 14 events for women. In 2015, the combined number of events for men and women including long course and open water events was 49, a drastic increase compared to the first edition. Historically, 50 different events were competed in 16 editions of the championships.

Long course[edit]

Long course events have been competed since the inaugural edition of the championships in 1973. The youngest male swimmer to participate in the World Swimming Championships was Ahnt Khaung Htut[5] from Myanmar, who was 12 years old in 2015. He took part at the 100m backstroke and 100m breaststroke events. The youngest female swimmer to participate in the World Swimming Championships was 10-year-old Alzain Tareq[6] from Bahrain in 2015. She participated at the 50m butterfly and 50m freestyle events.

Men's events[edit]

Edition 1973 1975 1978 1982 1986 1991 1994 1998 2001 2003 2005 2007 2009 2011 2013 2015
Freestyle 50 m X X X X X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
400 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
800 m X X X X X X X X
1500 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Backstroke 50 m X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Breaststroke 50 m X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Butterfly 50 m X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Individual
medley
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
400 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Relays 4×100 m freestyle X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
4×200 m freestyle X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
4×100 m medley X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Number of events 15 15 15 15 16 16 16 16 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20

Women's events[edit]

Edition 1973 1975 1978 1982 1986 1991 1994 1998 2001 2003 2005 2007 2009 2011 2013 2015
Freestyle 50 m X X X X X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
400 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
800 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
1500 m X X X X X X X X
Backstroke 50 m X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Breaststroke 50 m X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Butterfly 50 m X X X X X X X X
100 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Individual
medley
200 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
400 m X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Relays 4×100 m freestyle X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
4×200 m freestyle X X X X X X X X X X X X
4×100 m medley X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X
Number of events 14 14 14 14 16 16 16 16 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20

Mixed events[edit]

Edition 2015
Relays 4×100 m freestyle X
4×100 m medley X
Number of events 2

Open water[edit]

Open water swimming events have been competed since the sixth edition of the championships in 1991. From 2000 to 2010, FINA organized in even years specific championships for open water swimming events, the FINA World Open Water Swimming Championships.

Events[edit]

Edition 1991 1994 1998 2001 2003 2005 2007 2009 2011 2013 2015
Men 5 km X X X X X X X X X
10 km X X X X X X X X
25 km X X X X X X X X X X X
Women 5 km X X X X X X X X X
10 km X X X X X X X X
25 km X X X X X X X X X X X
Mixed 5 km X X X X
25 km X
Number of events 2 2 6 6 6 6 6 6 7 7 7

Medalists[edit]

A select number of athletes have won medals at both long course and open water events, including Oussama Mellouli from Tunisia, Hayley Lewis from Australia and Sharon van Rouwendaal from the Netherlands. For a full list of medalists covering all editions of the championships see List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in swimming (men) and List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in swimming (women). For a complete list of medal winners in open water swimming see List of World Aquatics Championships medalists in open water swimming.

World records[edit]

The World Championships have often been the occasion at which elite swimmers reach the peak of their season, and hence numerous world records are often broken.

Edition Men Women Mixed Total
1973 7 10 Not held 17
1975 1 4 Not held 5
1978 4 10 Not held 14
1982 4 3 Not held 7
1986 6 Not held 6
1991 7 Not held 7
1994 3 7 Not held 10
1998 Not held 0
2001 8 Not held 8
2003 12 2 Not held 14
2005 5 4 Not held 9
2007 7 8 Not held 15
2009 17 26 Not held 43
2011 2 Not held 2
2013 6 Not held 6
2015 2 6 4 12

Participation[edit]

Edition Athletes Nations
1973 686 47
1975 682 39
1978 828 49
1982 848 52
1986 1119 34
1991 1142 60
1994 1400 102
1998 1371 121
2001 1498 134
2003 2015 157
2005 1784 144
2007 2158 167

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]