Swimming in Christchurch: how the industry was affected by the earthquakes
Throughout 2010 and 2011, the city of Christchurch, New Zealand, suffered a series of devastating earthquakes that caused serious damage to the city. This study examines the effect these earthquakes have had on the sport of swimming in Christchurch. It specifically focuses on three different aspects of the swimming industry: indoor competitive swimming, open water swimming and learning to swim. It reports on the industry prior to the earthquakes before examining the developments subsequent to the shakes. The effects on both facilities and participation numbers were examined. Results showed that many indoor swimming facilities were lost which had significant flow-on effects. In addition, many beaches were out of bounds and almost half of the schools in Canterbury lost the use of their own swimming pools. In terms of participation numbers, results showed that while there was a decrease in the number of indoor competitive swimmers, Canterbury clubs were still highly competitive and their rankings at events either remained similar or bettered during and after the period of the earthquakes. On the other hand, an increase in the number of participants was seen in swimming lessons as temporary pools were constructed and subsidies were offered to cover transport and lesson costs. Open water swimming, however, seems to have been relatively unaffected by the earthquakes .... [Show full abstract]
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