Our signature product from our launch in 2020 will be a truly innovative starting block that has features unlike any other block on the market!
As swimmers and swim coaches, we've all dealt with pools that have small, old, rickety blocks. We've dealt with blocks that have tiny platforms, blocks that wobble if you so much as look at them, blocks that are covered in rust, and blocks that you're afraid will give you tetanus or other diseases if you touch them.
Beyond all that, with the fairly recent innovations of the track start foot rest, track start handles, and the backstroke wedge, it can be a nightmare trying to retrofit those additional features onto the blocks at your pool if you aren't buying brand new blocks. If you've got blocks that are more than 5 years old or so, they likely don't have the foot rest, and you generally have to look at 3rd party manufacturers to add on the foot rest and/or backstroke wedge, often at a hefty price.
We don't like that at all!
Look, we'd LOVE to be swimmers or coaches on teams that have more or less unlimited funds to spend on that equipment so all of our swimmers can have access to state of the art competition equipment, but we aren't. We've seen price quotes of $5,000+ to add on the foot rest and backstroke wedge for a 6 lane pool, and that's assuming that the existing blocks are new and large enough to support those addons! If you're buying new blocks with those features, we've seen price quotes of $20,000+ for a 6 lane pool.
For small teams like the ones most of the Black Line Swimming crew grew up swimming on, those prices are absolute dealbreakers. Perfect example--one of the teams our founder, Tim, swam on as an age grouper practiced at a facility with blocks from the late 80s/early 90s. After ~10 years of saving up money, the team finally was able to purchase new blocks with much larger platforms, the foot rests, and handles a few years ago. At that point, the original blocks were around 25-30 years old and way past their expiration date.
We want to change that.
We're still ironing out the fine details of our standard block design, but here are some of the highlights:
- Large platform size
- Modular attachment points for: trackstart foot rest, backstroke wedge, trackstart handlebars, step, and timing system horn/lights
- Optional trackstart foot rest, backstroke wedge, and trackstart handlebars that can be ordered with the block or as modular addons for any of our blocks
- Deck mounting compatibility with major brand deck mounts--for example, if you've currently got Spectrum blocks, you can mount our blocks in the same anchor posts with no modifications needed!
- Substantially lower prices than existing blocks on the market with those features!
As a Masters swimmer (and coach), our founder Tim practices at pools with rickety old, small blocks, and it's always an adjustment when he swims a meet at a pool with state of the art blocks. Our goal with our blocks (and our entire product line!) is to make it so pool and pool operators can afford to give their swimmers state of the art competition equipment to train with, so no one is at a disadvantage at meets.
Let us know if you've got any questions!