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Swimming
at the Games of the XXXII Olympiad
Swimming, Tokyo 2020.svg
Swimming (Marathon), Tokyo 2020.svg
Pictograms for Swimming (left) and Marathon Swimming (right)
VenueTokyo Aquatics Centre (pool)
Odaiba Marine Park (open water)
Dates24 July – 1 August 2021
4–5 August 2021 (Marathon)
No. of events37
Competitors1000
← 2016
2024 →

The swimming competitions at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo were due to take place from 25 July to 6 August 2020 at the Olympic Aquatics Centre. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the games were postponed to 2021. However, their official name remained 2020 Summer Olympics with swimming events set for 24 July–1 August 2021 and marathon swimming set for 4–5 August 2021.[1]

Swimming featured a record total of 37 events (18 for each gender and 1 mixed), with the addition of the men's 800 m freestyle, women's 1500 m freestyle, and the mixed 4 × 100 m medley relay.

Events

Swimming at the 2020 Olympics featured a total of 37 events (18 each for men and women and 1 mixed event), including two 10 km open-water marathons. This was a slight increase from the 34 events contested in the previous Olympic Games. The following events were contested (all pool events are long course, and distances are in meters unless stated):

Schedule

Unlike the previous Olympics, swimming program schedule occurred in two segments. For the pool events, prelims were held in the evening, with semifinals and final in the following morning session, spanning a day between semifinals and finals in those events with semifinals. The shift of the normal morning prelims and evening finals (to evening prelims and morning finals) occurred for these Games due to the prior request made by US broadcaster NBC (due to the substantial fees NBC has paid for rights to the Olympics, the IOC has allowed NBC to have influence on event scheduling to maximize U.S. television ratings when possible; NBC agreed to a $7.75 billion contract extension on May 7, 2014, to air the Olympics through the 2032 games,[2] is also one of the major sources of revenue for the IOC),[3] so that the finals from the event could be shown live in the United States.[4][5]

Legend
H Heats ½ Semifinals F Final

M = Morning session, starting at 10:30 local time (01:30 UTC).
E = Evening session, starting at 19:00 local time (10:00 UTC).

Men[4][6][7][8]
Date → Jul 24 Jul 25 Jul 26 Jul 27 Jul 28 Jul 29 Jul 30 Jul 31 Aug 1 Aug 5
Event ↓ M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E
50 m freestyle H ½ F
100 m freestyle H ½ F
200 m freestyle H ½ F
400 m freestyle H F
800 m freestyle H F
1500 m freestyle H F
100 m backstroke H ½ F
200 m backstroke H ½ F
100 m breaststroke H ½ F
200 m breaststroke H ½ F
100 m butterfly H ½ F
200 m butterfly H ½ F
200 m individual medley H ½ F
400 m individual medley H F
4 × 100 m freestyle relay H F
4 × 200 m freestyle relay H F
4 × 100 m medley relay H F
10 km open water F
Women[4][6][7][8]
Date → Jul 24 Jul 25 Jul 26 Jul 27 Jul 28 Jul 29 Jul 30 Jul 31 Aug 1 Aug 4
Event ↓ M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E
50 m freestyle H ½ F
100 m freestyle H ½ F
200 m freestyle H ½ F
400 m freestyle H F
800 m freestyle H F
1500 m freestyle H F
100 m backstroke H ½ F
200 m backstroke H ½ F
100 m breaststroke H ½ F
200 m breaststroke H ½ F
100 m butterfly H ½ F
200 m butterfly H ½ F
200 m individual medley H ½ F
400 m individual medley H F
4 × 100 m freestyle relay H F
4 × 200 m freestyle relay H F
4 × 100 m medley relay H F
10 km open water F
Mixed[4][6][7]
Date → Jul 24 Jul 25 Jul 26 Jul 27 Jul 28 Jul 29 Jul 30 Jul 31 Aug 1 Aug 4
Event ↓ M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E M E
4 × 100 m medley relay H F

Qualification

Main article: Swimming at the 2020 Summer Olympics – Qualification

Swimming – individual events

FINA establishes qualifying times for individual events. The time standards consisted of two types: an "Olympic Qualifying Time" (OQT) and an "Olympic Selection time" (OST). Each country was able to enter up to two swimmers per event, provided both swimmers met the (faster) qualifying time. A country was able to enter one swimmer per event that met the invitation standard. Any swimmer who met the "qualifying" time was entered in the event for the Games; a swimmer meeting the "invitation" standard was eligible for entry, and their entry was allotted/filled in by ranking. If a country has no swimmers who meet either of the qualifying standards, it may have entered one male and one female. A country that did not receive an allocation spot but had at least one swimmer who met a qualifying standard might have entered the swimmer with the highest ranking.[9]

Swimming – relay events

Each relay event features 16 teams, composed of:[9]

Open-water swimming

The men's and women's 10 km races featured 25 swimmers:[9]

Participating nations

As the host nation, Japan receives guaranteed quota place in case it would not qualify any qualification places.

Medal summary

Medal table

  *   Host nation (Japan)

RankNOCGoldSilverBronzeTotal
1 United States1110930
2 Australia93921
3 Great Britain4318
4 China3216
5 ROC2215
6 Japan*2103
7 Canada1326
8 Hungary1203
9 South Africa1102
10 Brazil1023
 Germany1023
12 Tunisia1001
13 Netherlands0303
14 Italy0257
15 Hong Kong0202
16 Ukraine0112
17 France0101
 Sweden0101
19 Switzerland0022
20 Denmark0011
 Finland0011
Totals (21 NOCs)373737111

Men's events

Games Gold Silver Bronze
50 m freestyle
details
Caeleb Dressel
 United States
21.07 OR Florent Manaudou
 France
21.55 Bruno Fratus
 Brazil
21.57
100 m freestyle
details
Caeleb Dressel
 United States
47.02 OR Kyle Chalmers
 Australia
47.08 Kliment Kolesnikov
 ROC
47.44
200 m freestyle
details
Thomas Dean
 Great Britain
1:44.22 NR Duncan Scott
 Great Britain
1:44.26 Fernando Scheffer
 Brazil
1:44.66 SA
400 m freestyle
details
Ahmed Hafnaoui
 Tunisia
3:43.36 Jack McLoughlin
 Australia
3:43.52 Kieran Smith
 United States
3:43.94
800 m freestyle
details
Robert Finke
 United States
7:41.87 NR Gregorio Paltrinieri
 Italy
7:42.11 Mykhailo Romanchuk
 Ukraine
7:42.33
1500 m freestyle
details
Robert Finke
 United States
14:39.65 Mykhailo Romanchuk
 Ukraine
14:40.66 Florian Wellbrock
 Germany
14:40.91
100 m backstroke
details
Evgeny Rylov
 ROC
51.98 ER Kliment Kolesnikov
 ROC
52.00 Ryan Murphy
 United States
52.19
200 m backstroke
details
Evgeny Rylov
 ROC
1:53.27 OR Ryan Murphy
 United States
1:54.15 Luke Greenbank
 Great Britain
1:54.72
100 m breaststroke
details
Adam Peaty
 Great Britain
57.37 Arno Kamminga
 Netherlands
58.00 Nicolò Martinenghi
 Italy
58.33
200 m breaststroke
details
Zac Stubblety-Cook
 Australia
2:06.38 OR Arno Kamminga
 Netherlands
2:07.01 Matti Mattsson
 Finland
2:07.13
100 m butterfly
details
Caeleb Dressel
 United States
49.45 WR Kristóf Milák
 Hungary
49.68 ER Noè Ponti
 Switzerland
50.74 NR
200 m butterfly
details
Kristóf Milák
 Hungary
1:51.25 OR Tomoru Honda
 Japan
1:53.73 Federico Burdisso
 Italy
1:54.45
200 m individual medley
details
Wang Shun
 China
1:55.00 AS Duncan Scott
 Great Britain
1:55.28 NR Jérémy Desplanches
 Switzerland
1:56.17 NR
400 m individual medley
details
Chase Kalisz
 United States
4:09.42 Jay Litherland
 United States
4:10.28 Brendon Smith
 Australia
4:10.38
4 × 100 m freestyle relay
details
 United States
Caeleb Dressel (47.26)
Blake Pieroni (47.58)
Bowe Becker (47.44)
Zach Apple (46.69)
Brooks Curry[a]
3:08.97  Italy
Alessandro Miressi (47.72)
Thomas Ceccon (47.45)
Lorenzo Zazzeri (47.31)
Manuel Frigo (47.63)
Santo Condorelli[a]
3:10.11  Australia
Matthew Temple (48.07)
Zac Incerti (47.55)
Alexander Graham (48.16)
Kyle Chalmers (46.44)
Cameron McEvoy[a]
3:10.22
4 × 200 m freestyle relay
details
 Great Britain
Thomas Dean (1:45.72)
James Guy (1:44.40)
Matthew Richards (1:45.01)
Duncan Scott (1:43.45)
Calum Jarvis[a]
6:58.58 ER  ROC
Martin Malyutin (1:45.69)
Ivan Girev (1:45.63)
Evgeny Rylov (1:45.26)
Mikhail Dovgalyuk (1:45.23)
Aleksandr Krasnykh[a]
Mikhail Vekovishchev[a]
7:01.81  Australia
Alexander Graham (1:46.00)
Kyle Chalmers (1:45.35)
Zac Incerti (1:45.75)
Thomas Neill (1:44.74)
Mack Horton[a]
Elijah Winnington[a]
7:01.84
4 × 100 m medley relay
details
 United States
Ryan Murphy (52.31)
Michael Andrew (58.49)
Caeleb Dressel (49.03)
Zach Apple (46.95)
Hunter Armstrong[a]
Andrew Wilson[a]
Tom Shields[a]
Blake Pieroni[a]
3:26.78 WR  Great Britain
Luke Greenbank (53.63)
Adam Peaty (56.53)
James Guy (50.27)
Duncan Scott (47.08)
James Wilby[a]
3:27.51 ER  Italy
Thomas Ceccon (52.52)
Nicolò Martinenghi (58.11)
Federico Burdisso (51.07)
Alessandro Miressi (47.47)
3:29.17 NR
10 km open water
details
Florian Wellbrock
 Germany
1:48:33.7 Kristóf Rasovszky
 Hungary
1:48:59.0 Gregorio Paltrinieri
 Italy
1:49:01.1

AF African Record | AM Americas Record | SA South American Record | AS Asian Record | ER European Record | OC Oceanian Record | OR Olympic Record | WJR World Junior Record | WR World Record
NR National Record (any World Record is necessarily also an Olympic, area, and national record. Area records (for continental regions) are also national records)

a Swimmers who participated in the heats only and received medals.

Women's events

Games Gold Silver Bronze
50 m freestyle
details
Emma McKeon
 Australia
23.81 OR Sarah Sjöström
 Sweden
24.07 Pernille Blume
 Denmark
24.21
100 m freestyle
details
Emma McKeon
 Australia
51.96 OR, OC Siobhán Haughey
 Hong Kong
52.27 AS Cate Campbell
 Australia
52.52
200 m freestyle
details
Ariarne Titmus
 Australia
1:53.50 OR Siobhán Haughey
 Hong Kong
1:53.92 AS Penny Oleksiak
 Canada
1:54.70
400 m freestyle
details
Ariarne Titmus
 Australia
3:56.69 OC Katie Ledecky
 United States
3:57.36 Li Bingjie
 China
4:01.08 AS
800 m freestyle
details
Katie Ledecky
 United States
8:12.57 Ariarne Titmus
 Australia
8:13.83 OC Simona Quadarella
 Italy
8:18.35
1500 m freestyle
details
Katie Ledecky
 United States
15:37.34 Erica Sullivan
 United States
15:41.41 Sarah Köhler
 Germany
15:42.91
100 m backstroke
details
Kaylee McKeown
 Australia
57.47 OR Kylie Masse
 Canada
57.72 Regan Smith
 United States
58.05
200 m backstroke
details
Kaylee McKeown
 Australia
2:04.68 Kylie Masse
 Canada
2:05.42 NR Emily Seebohm
 Australia
2:06.17
100 m breaststroke
details
Lydia Jacoby
 United States
1:04.95 Tatjana Schoenmaker
 South Africa
1:05.22 Lilly King
 United States
1:05.54
200 m breaststroke
details
Tatjana Schoenmaker
 South Africa
2:18.95 WR Lilly King
 United States
2:19.92 Annie Lazor
 United States
2:20.84
100 m butterfly
details
Maggie Mac Neil
 Canada
55.59 AM Zhang Yufei
 China
55.64 Emma McKeon
 Australia
55.72 OC
200 m butterfly
details
Zhang Yufei
 China
2:03.86 OR Regan Smith
 United States
2:05.30 Hali Flickinger
 United States
2:05.65
200 m individual medley
details
Yui Ohashi
 Japan
2:08.52 Alex Walsh
 United States
2:08.65 Kate Douglass
 United States
2:09.04
400 m individual medley
details
Yui Ohashi
 Japan
4:32.08 Emma Weyant
 United States
4:32.76 Hali Flickinger
 United States
4:34.90
4 × 100 m freestyle relay
details
 Australia
Bronte Campbell (53.01)
Meg Harris (53.09)
Emma McKeon (51.35)
Cate Campbell (52.24)
Mollie O'Callaghan[b]
Madison Wilson[b]
3:29.69 WR  Canada
Kayla Sanchez (53.42)
Maggie Mac Neil (53.47)
Rebecca Smith (53.63)
Penny Oleksiak (52.26)
Taylor Ruck[b]
3:32.78  United States
Erika Brown (54.02)
Abbey Weitzeil (52.68)
Natalie Hinds (53.15)
Simone Manuel (52.96)
Catie DeLoof[b]
Allison Schmitt[b]
Olivia Smoliga[b]
3:32.81
4 × 200 m freestyle relay
details
 China
Yang Junxuan (1:54.37)
Tang Muhan (1:55.00)
Zhang Yufei (1:55.66)
Li Bingjie (1:55.30)
Dong Jie[b]
Zhang Yifan[b]
7:40.33 WR  United States
Allison Schmitt (1:56.34)
Paige Madden (1:55.25)
Katie McLaughlin (1:55.38)
Katie Ledecky (1:53.76)
Brooke Forde[b]
Bella Sims[b]
7:40.73 AM  Australia
Ariarne Titmus (1:54.51)
Emma McKeon (1:55.31)
Madison Wilson (1:55.62)
Leah Neale (1:55.85)
Tamsin Cook[b]
Meg Harris[b]
Mollie O'Callaghan[b]
Brianna Throssell[b]
7:41.29 OC
4 × 100 m medley relay
details
 Australia
Kaylee McKeown (58.01)
Chelsea Hodges (1:05.57)
Emma McKeon (55.91)
Cate Campbell (52.11)
Emily Seebohm[b]
Brianna Throssell[b]
Mollie O'Callaghan[b]
3:51.60 OR, OC  United States
Regan Smith (58.05)
Lydia Jacoby (1:05.03)
Torri Huske (56.16)
Abbey Weitzeil (52.49)
Rhyan White[b]
Lilly King[b]
Claire Curzan[b]
Erika Brown[b]
3:51.73  Canada
Kylie Masse (57.90)
Sydney Pickrem (1:07.17)
Maggie Mac Neil (55.27)
Penny Oleksiak (52.26)
Taylor Ruck[b]
Kayla Sanchez[b]
3:52.60 NR
10 km open water
details
Ana Marcela Cunha
 Brazil
1:59:30.8 Sharon van Rouwendaal
 Netherlands
1:59:31.7 Kareena Lee
 Australia
1:59:32.5

AF African Record | AM Americas Record | SA South American Record | AS Asian Record | ER European Record | OC Oceanian Record | OR Olympic Record | WJR World Junior Record | WR World Record
NR National Record (any World Record is necessarily also an Olympic, area, and national record. Area records (for continental regions) are also national records)

b Swimmers who participated in the heats only and received medals.

Mixed events

Games Gold Silver Bronze
4 × 100 m medley relay
details
 Great Britain
Kathleen Dawson (58.80)
Adam Peaty (56.78)
James Guy (50.00)
Anna Hopkin (52.00)
Freya Anderson[c]
3:37.58 WR  China
Xu Jiayu (52.56)
Yan Zibei (58.11)
Zhang Yufei (55.48)
Yang Junxuan (52.71)
3:38.86  Australia
Kaylee McKeown (58.14)
Zac Stubblety-Cook (58.82)
Matthew Temple (50.26)
Emma McKeon (51.76)
Bronte Campbell[c]
Isaac Cooper[c]
Brianna Throssell[c]
3:38.95

AF African Record | AM Americas Record | SA South American Record | AS Asian Record | ER European Record | OC Oceanian Record | OR Olympic Record | WJR World Junior Record | WR World Record
NR National Record (any World Record is necessarily also an Olympic, area, and national record. Area records (for continental regions) are also national records)

c Swimmers who participated in the heats only and received medals.

Records broken

See also: World and Olympic records set at the 2020 Summer Olympics

Men

Event Round Swimmer Team Time Date Record Day
Men's 800 metre freestyle Heat 4 Mykhailo Romanchuk  Ukraine 7:41.28 27 July OR 4
Men's 200 metre butterfly Final Kristóf Milák  Hungary 1:51.25 28 July OR 5
Men's 200 metre breaststroke Final Zac Stubblety-Cook  Australia 2:06.38 29 July OR 6
Men's 100 metre freestyle Final Caeleb Dressel  United States 47.02 29 July OR 6
Men's 100 metre butterfly Heat 8 Caeleb Dressel  United States 50.39 29 July =OR 6
Men's 100 metre butterfly Semifinal 1 Kristóf Milák  Hungary 50.31 30 July OR 7
Men's 100 metre butterfly Semifinal 2 Caeleb Dressel  United States 49.71 30 July OR 7
Men's 200 metre backstroke Final Evgeny Rylov  ROC 1:53.27 30 July OR 7
Men's 100 metre butterfly Final Caeleb Dressel  United States 49.45 31 July WR 8
Men's 50 metre freestyle Final Caeleb Dressel  United States 21.07 1 August OR 9
Men's 4 × 100 metre medley relay Final  United States 3:26.78 1 August WR 9

Women

Event Round Swimmer Team Time Date Record Day
Women's 100 metre freestyle Final Sarah Sjöström  Sweden 52.62 (r) 25 July OR 2
Women's 4 × 100 metre freestyle relay Final Bronte Campbell (53.01)
Meg Harris (53.09)
Emma McKeon (51.35)
Cate Campbell (52.24)
 Australia 3:29.69 25 July WR[10] 2
Women's 100 metre backstroke Heat 4 Kylie Masse  Canada 58.17 25 July OR 2
Women's 100 metre backstroke Heat 5 Regan Smith  United States 57.96 25 July OR 2
Women's 100 metre backstroke Heat 6 Kaylee McKeown  Australia 57.88 25 July OR 2
Women's 100 metre breaststroke Heat 5 Tatjana Schoenmaker  South Africa 1:04.82 25 July OR[11] 2
Women's 100 metre backstroke Semifinal 1 Regan Smith  United States 57.86 26 July OR 3
Women's 1500 metre freestyle Heat 5 Katie Ledecky  United States 15:35.35 26 July OR 3
Women's 100 metre backstroke Final Kaylee McKeown  Australia 57.47 27 July OR 4
Women's 200 metre freestyle Final Ariarne Titmus  Australia 1:53.50 28 July OR 5
Women's 100 metre freestyle Heat 6 Emma McKeon  Australia 52.13 28 July OR 5
Women's 200 metre breaststroke Heat 4 Tatjana Schoenmaker  South Africa 2:19.16 28 July OR 5
Women's 200 metre butterfly Final Zhang Yufei  China 2:03.86 29 July OR 6
Women's 4 × 200 metre freestyle relay Final
 China 7:40.33 29 July WR 6
Women's 200 metre breaststroke Final Tatjana Schoenmaker  South Africa 2:18.95 30 July WR 7
Women's 100 metre freestyle Final Emma McKeon  Australia 51.96 30 July OR 7
Women's 50 metre freestyle Heat 10 Emma McKeon  Australia 24.02 30 July OR 7
Women's 50 metre freestyle Semifinal 2 Emma McKeon  Australia 24.00 31 July OR 8
Women's 50 metre freestyle Final Emma McKeon  Australia 23.81 1 August OR 9
Women's 4 × 100 metre medley relay Final  Australia 3:51.60 1 August OR 9

Mixed

Event Round Swimmer Team Time Date Record Day
Mixed 4 × 100 metre medley relay Heat 1
 Great Britain 3:38.75 29 July OR 6
Mixed 4 × 100 metre medley relay Final
 Great Britain 3:37.58 31 July WR 8

History of Olympic Swimming

The first Olympic games were held in Athens, Greece in 1896, with competitive swimming being at the center of the competition. Competitive Swimming in the Olympic Games is one of only four sports that have been retained in every Olympic games, dating back to the very first in 1896. Swimming at the 1896 Olympics was an experimental event that include events that are no longer included today. Swimming at the first Olympics was also an all men sport and no women were allowed to swim. Some of these events included:

It was not until the 1912 Stockholm Olympics that women were allowed to compete in competitive swimming at the Olympic games. However they were only allowed to compete in the 100 m Freestyle and 400 m free relay.

By 1924, new swimming events at the Olympics were constantly being added to the Summer Olympic games. Backstroke and breaststroke were becoming common events among competitive men and women swimming. The 1924 Olympic Games consisted of 11 competitive swimming events, 6 for men and 5 for women.

Post World War II

After World War II, Olympic sports saw an increase in innovation and technological advancements. This translated to the swimming world; formation of lane lines, advanced training techniques, increase in indoor swimming pools, hydrodynamic swimsuits, and better drainage systems contributed to many reasons as to why competitive swimming popularity increased, thus creating more events at the Olympic games for both men and women.

The 1956 Olympics was the first Olympic games to included the Butterfly event, both 200 m for men and 100 m for women. The 1956 Summer Olympics included 13 events for swimming, making it a record high at the time.

Today

The 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics included 37 total events, 18 for each gender, and also included a co-ed event. Competitive swimming at the Summer Olympics continued to change at each Summer Olympic games. Technological advances and innovation of indoor swimming pools both helped increase the popularity of the sport as well as the betterment of competitor swimmers.

See also

References

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  2. ^ "Olympics on NBC through 2032". USA Today. Gannett Company. 7 May 2014.
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  11. ^ "Swimming - Women's 100m Breaststroke Heat 5 Results". Tokyo 2020. Archived from the original on 27 July 2021. Retrieved 25 July 2021.

12. “List of Participating Countries in Tokyo OLYMPICS 2020-21.” Tokyo 2020-21 Summer Olympics Participating Countries: 206 NOCs Nations List, www.whereig.com/olympics/summer-olympics-participating-countries.html.

13. Yu, Cindy, and Talya Minsberg. “A Look at All of the World Records That Were Broken at the Tokyo Olympics.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 8 Aug. 2021, www.nytimes.com/2021/08/08/sports/olympics/world-records-tokyo-olympics.html.

14. 2019, Kaylie Williams, 4 February, and Kaylie Williams. “From Past to Present: The Evolution and History of Olympic Swimming.” Swimming World News, 4 Feb. 2019, www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/news/from-past-to-present-the-evolution-and-history-of-olympic-swimming/.

15. “Swimming: Olympic Sport.” Tokyo 2020, olympics.com/tokyo-2020/en/sports/swimming/.

16. Olympic Medal Count.” Tokyo 2020 Olympics (Jul 23-Aug 8, 2021), olympics.com/tokyo-2020/olympic-games/en/results/all-sports/medal-standings.htm.

17.“Swimming at the 1896 Summer Olympics.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 3 Sept. 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swimming_at_the_1896_Summer_Olympics.

18. 2019, Kaylie Williams, 4 February, and Kaylie Williams. “From Past to Present: The Evolution and History of Olympic Swimming.” Swimming World News, 4 Feb. 2019, https://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/news/from-past-to-present-the-evolution-and-history-of-olympic-swimming/.