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Profiling Andrew McPherson

Youngest to swim age in 100 free

Author Unknown | September 1, 2002

Andrew Moss McPherson was born in Jacksonville, Fla., where he grew up. He said that he learned to swim "about three seconds after my uncle threw me off his shoulders into an oncoming wave in the ocean when I was nine years old. At the time, I though it was the end of my life."

Andy competed in age group and high school swimming and at the University of Florida where he was a collegiate All-American. He was inducted into the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame.

Speaking of his beginning Masters experiences, Andy said "I swam one meet in 1976 when a friend convinced me to swim in a relay. The next time that I competed was in 1982. I had dislocated and broken my hip in a bicycle race accident and for rehabilitation was instructed to walk in a pool in chest deep water. It led to swimming for a year." But it wasn't until 1987 that he started to swim regularly. He currently swims for Davis Aquatic Masters in California, previously with DAM coach Mike Collins and currently with Rick Powers and Stu Kahn.

Andy's past training was three days a week, 1,500 yards a day, but he is presently swimming five days a week, 3,500-5,000 yards a day. He said, "One third of the yards are stroke technique and kicking. I supplement that with weight training, including leg strength. I train all the strokes for muscular balance." His motivation to continue swimming is to remain fit and keep his lungs open. "I have asthma," he explains. His future goals are to keep training and to resume competition.

When asked to highlight his Masters experiences Andy said, "As far as I know I was the youngest person to swim his age in the 100-yard free. I did a 49.93 at age 49 in 1996. This is a dubious distinction for Rich Abrahams, who has clocked a 48.37 in the 100 at age 55." Other highlights he said, were being an assistant coach at DAM and UC Davis, and swimming lifetime bests in the 100 fly, and 200 IM at age 47. Andy has achieved All-American status from 1988-2002 and has received All-Star recognition from 1992-1995. He set a USMS record in 1992 in the 45-49 age group for the 100-SCY freestyle with a time of 48.13.

Andy is an architect, and besides swimming he says, "I like cycling, tending the garden, and scratching the cat."

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