pacific masters swimming

We offer adults in Northern California and Northwestern Nevada the opportunity to participate in a lifelong fitness and/or competitive swimming program.

Pacific Masters News and Events

The August 3 edition of the Pacific Masters Update contains information about the following:


  • 400 Fastest Pull For Sebastopol 2020 August 1-31
  • 2020 Toyota USMS Virtual Championships August 12-23
  • 2020 USMS 5K/10K ePostal National Championships June 1-September 30
  • Go The Distance On-going
  • Open Water Swim Season


  • USMS Championship Bidding

PACIFIC MASTERS NEWS - details in Update

  • The Pandemic Video - How to Contribute
  • Pacific Masters Monthly Meeting August 12, Meeting at 7pm, Doors Open at 6:45
  • 2020 Oceana Zone Meeting Thursday, September 10 at 5pm
  • Calling All Writers


  • Swimming Books

Please send suggestions for Update articles to the Update Editors.

2019 Pacific Masters Coach of the Year Award Recipient Mary Kahn


Mary Kahn has been a coach for Davis Aquatic Masters since 2009. During that time she has exemplified what it means to be a leader, a mentor, a counselor, an advocate and a friend. Her presence on deck has been, and continues to be, settling and inspirational for the myriad of swimmers she connects with each day. She is also a leader by example when she is in the pool, helping to forge and sustain an atmosphere of competitiveness and supportiveness among fellow swimmers. She consistently exudes an aura of approachability and a genuine interest in helping those around her. Even under tremendous duress and adversity, Mary exemplifies what it means to be outstanding in the way she responds to and resolves both ongoing and emergent issues. The totality of her unique skills are unparalleled and her inspiration is unquestionable.

2020 A Strange Year in Review – The Pacific Masters Movie

MEMO masters workout at the beach in Alameda <<...>>

The 2020 Annual Celebration and Meeting is going virtual this year. In addition to a very engaging program, we are looking to capture the unusual dynamics of the year and memorialize the ways in which our members have adapted to these strange times. 

Great Books for Swimmers and Water Lovers

These days, the closest I’ve come to going for a swim has been going for a walk through the park and pausing at the chain link fence protecting my local pool from people like me. When the Shelter-in-Place order was first announced, I had just returned from a lovely swim and felt great. How long could this lockdown possibly last?

It’s lasted long enough for me to revisit many of my favorite swimming-related books, as well as dive into a few new ones. Below is a list of some classic, must-read, books as well as a few new, or lesser-known ones that deserve your attention. I’m an open-water baby, so my picks lean towards tales of wild swimming, stories about endurance athletes and books about the healing nature of water. I hope you’ll find a few on this list to tide you over until you are next able to jump in and enjoy the water yourself.

2019 Celebration and Annual Meeting

Tech Talk with Aaron Peirsol

Nine years ago, Pacific Masters Swimming created an event to celebrate all that has transpired in the year. Occurring each November, it is the organization’s opportunity to recognize the efforts and accomplishments of our members while giving something back. We devote a day to immersing in all things swimming. As the largest Local Masters Swim Committee in the country, our programs, activities, events and especially our people, are the best. This year’s celebration followed the success of prior years. The day starts with both pool and dryland workouts followed by a technical talk, a catered lunch, a keynote address by one of our sport’s luminaries, all capped off with the year’s final LMSC business meeting and recognition ceremony.

Pacific Masters Annual Celebration and Meeting

St. Mary's College, Moraga, Ca.

November 17, 2019

swim practiceGetting up at 5 AM on a Sunday morning is only worth it-- if you get to swim. The Annual meeting of the Pacific Masters, held at St. Mary’s College in Moraga, provided that opportunity and so much more.

The program began with two exercise choices: a swim practice conducted by Stu and Mary Kahn and a dry land exercise class led by Chris Chorak. Divided into two groups, the sessions were held to manageable numbers.

The Kincaid Fire

Our beautiful California has been looking more and more like Tierra del Fuego. We thought 2017 had hit the Top of the Charts as the worst case scenario, but 2019 has proven to be an unfortunate contender. Some of us were impacted by the fires directly with evacuations, but we all were affected by the fallout of unhealthy, smoky skies and black-outs. Here are some impressions by our own Pacific Masters Swimmers of two weeks of stress and turmoil.


Rinconada Swim Coach Carol Macpherson Retires after 47 Years

Carol MacphersonCarol Macpherson is retiring as Rinconada’s Coach after 47 years on the job. She founded Rinconada Masters, along with Cindy Baxter, in 1972, as one of the Bay Area’s first Masters Swim Teams. Cindy retired in 1999, leaving Carol as Head Coach for the last twenty years.

Carol has been an outstanding swimmer on her own, competing for the Santa Clara Swim Club, under the tutelage of George Haines. She has attended, competed and coached approximately 40 National Championships and 10 International meets. She swam in the Maui Channel Relay in 1998. Her last FINA International Competition was in 2008, in Perth, Australia. She took eight swimmers with her and she personally won 2 seconds and 2 fourths. 

Reflections on the Sacramento Masters Sprint Pentathlon

Sacramento Masters Sprint Pentathlon

Teamwork, treasure and trust exemplify the SCM Sprint Pentathlon in Folsom. No one could deny the excellent teamwork between Sacramento Masters and Sierra Marlin Masters as they joined forces to host this meet. From the moment you parked your car at the Folsom Aquatic Center and walked towards the pool, there was a sense that something very special was about to take place.

The first impression of this pool was a sparkling, clean facility populated by welcoming and sincerely hospitable folks, attentive to incoming guests. We felt treasured. The Meet Director actually smiled as he juggled a new USMS registration with cell phone in hand and a lineup of questions from different people. Throughout the meet, the announcer was witty and shared bits and facts about our world.

2019 USMS Convention: One Person's View

Under the ArchSt.nLouis, Missouri, Gateway to the West, was the location of the 2019 USMS Annual Convention. Under the shadow of the amazing Gateway Arch from September 11 to 15, committee meetings were conducted, rules were clarified and elections were held as swimmers of all backgrounds and abilities were celebrated. Delegates and representatives of Local Masters Swimming Committees (LMSC) had a great time meeting old and new friends, while learning about the hard work that goes into keeping USMS such a vibrant organization.

This was the last annual meeting of the first half century of Masters Swimming! Established in 1970, 2020 will be our 50th year. 2020 is also an Olympic year, so expect to see “50 years of USMS” branding prominently displayed throughout the year!

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