Barrowman shows masters how to feel like champs

Swimming is not just for children and young adults in the Cayman Islands. Those more mature are well catered for, too.  

The Cayman Islands Amateur Swimming Association Masters Swim Programme at the Lions Aquatic Centre is coached by Mike Barrowman, a former Olympic champion and world record holder who now resides in Grand Cayman. 

Now in its 13th year, the masters programme has coached nearly 4,000 participants.  

Classes are Mondays and Thursdays from 6 to 7pm at the Lions Pool. The cost is $5 per session. 

With an average of four swimmers per lane, there is plenty of space and each week three separate workouts are written for differing tiers of ability. 

With the annual Flowers Sea Swim not so far away in June, these customised workouts allow swimmers who want to tackle the swim, from novice to experienced, the opportunity to get ready. 

The sessions cater to age 18 and older and are popular with people entering sea swims and triathlons. 

“I base the workouts on an extensive knowledge base of swimming science background and develop them to be as efficient as possible – we achieve more in an hour than most do in two,” Barrowman said.  

“We use exercises designed to improve the mechanics of swimming via specific stroke drills. This was my speciality when swimming – we created a new technique, new methods of training efficiency that are still cutting edge to this day.  

“I use these techniques in the CIASA Masters programme and provide swimmers with a uniquely efficient training system.” 

Barrowman, one of the pioneers of the “wave-style” breaststroke technique, was fourth in the 1988 Summer Olympics in the 200 metres breaststroke, won the World Championships in Perth, Australia, in 1991 and returned to the Olympics in Barcelona in 1992, where he won gold in the 200m breaststroke in world record time. 

He works locally at Butterfield Bank and is a part-time master’s swim coach in the Cayman Islands.  


For more information on the CIASA Masters Swim Programme, e-mail Mike Barrowman at [email protected] or just show up and introduce yourself. 

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