Swimming, back in the day

I remember nude swimming, but wasn't aware of the men/women double standard, or of how frankly the nudity was taken:

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

Fascinating piece of history.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

I was old enough to be going to our school system pool at the time of the newspaper article, but our swimming lessons and open swims were coed and we all wore suits. The surprise for me here are the posed for pictures with naked guys and clothed gals. Now that I've had chances to swim nude, I look back wishing we were less prudish in our neighborhood.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

It's funny that it was common for men to be nude in that times. Today it's the other way round. A nude man in public would have much more problems than a nude woman.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

Once some one of my colleagues born in the 80'smade a comment about the lack of modesty among the older men in his gym's locker room. I replied that it probably was because they grew up in a time when men and boys routinely swam nude in the company of other males, They acted like they had never heard of this before. This surprised me because I would have expected that their fathers who were in my age range would have mentioned it to them at some point.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

Steve, thanks for posting this. In my teens I remember being told that the local YMCA used to allow males to swim nude during segregated (male only) swimming hours. (Unfortunately I don't know the year in which this practice was discontinued.) I don't doubt the veracity of the Sheboygan Press article you attached at all. However, I have to admit to wondering about the source(s) of the mixed gender photos, and the possibility that either (a) they were doctored by a skilled photoshopper or (b) they came from some specific European (German?) club setting that didn't reflect common practice even in that country, let alone more broadly.

NB: To be crystal clear, I don't for an *instant* doubt Steve's sincerity here. Quite simply, maybe it's my own cultural or historical blindness, but I find it hard to believe that CFNM (clothed female, nude male) swim sessions were at all common at public swimming pools or even private swim clubs damned near anywhere, and especially in the English-speaking world. (Obviously, male nudity at mixed gender swimming sessions at so-called "nudist colonies" or at clothing-optional beaches is an entirely different matter.) That said, if anyone can shed further light on this, I'd really appreciate it.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

I wish I could shed more light on the origin of the photos. I picked them up from a blog post by an English-speaking man who lives in Austria. He says they're not Austrian. I'd guess that the men's and women's teams did not swim together. In one of the photos, it's plain that each team is posing with its own coach at the end of the row. The hairstyles would date it to the 1960's, western Europe or the anglo world.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

Steven that is so true that artical could of been written i the local paper where i grew up that was exactly how it was just the boys had the afternoon and girls in the morning. That was how i learned how to swim and we loved it especially the free hour after.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

I don't think the pictures were photoshopped or changed and have seen many vintage shots similar to these. At that time "modesty" for men was that they neither preened nor were shy. My understanding is that much had to do with mandatory military conscription of the era, where men had to be prepared to live as men among men without comfort or privacy. I saved some old pix from a swimming blog that went offline which I'll try to share.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

I remember nude swimming, but wasn't aware of the men/women double standard, or of how frankly the nudity was taken:
The custom of swimming naked in a club never existed in Germany. At least not after World War II. So I envy everyone who had the opportunity in the US at the YMCA and elsewhere. Women naturally have a greater sense of shame. It is therefore only consistent for women to wear swimwear and male participants to swim naked. These customs and traditions at the YMCA inspire me. But I think it would be better if men and women always swim separately. Women dressed, men naked. I'm more conservative about that. That would also enable more male bonding. Please more on this subject. And thanks to SteveinKona and Stoneandy for the pictures.

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RE:Swimming, back in the day

Stoneandy'

In the 60s and 70s, I was always going to locker rooms where all males walked around naked, urinated naked into shared trough urinal, and showered together naked regardless of age.

When I went to a friend's house where he lived with his father and older brother, and they had a pool and a tall fence, all of the guys were always naked. We saw nothing odd or wrong about it.

We all had the same body parts and so no one cared.

However, we were never naked around girls in swimsuits.

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