Kylie Masse

Kylie Jacqueline Masse (born January 18, 1996) is a Canadian competition swimmer who specializes in the backstroke.[2] She tied for the bronze medal at the 2016 Summer Olympics in 100 m backstroke. Masse is the current world champion in the 100 m backstroke, breaking the eight year old world record in the process, which she held until July 2018. While winning her title in Budapest at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships she became the first Canadian woman to become a world champion in a swimming event.[4] She subsequently became the first Canadian woman to defend her world title at the 2019 World Aquatics Championships.[5]

Kylie Masse
Masse in the red cap, competes in the 200m at the 2017 Santa Clara Grand Prix.
Personal information
National teamCanada
Born (1996-01-18) January 18, 1996[1]
LaSalle, Ontario
Height172 cm (5 ft 8 in)[2][3]
Weight61 kg (134 lb)[2]
ClubWindsor Essex Swim Team
College teamUniversity of Toronto
CoachByron MacDonald[2]

Masse won two gold medals at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in the 100 m and 200 m backstroke, setting a games record in both events, and finished the games with a silver in the 50 m backstroke.[6]

She is also the Canadian record holder in the 100 m back.[7] Masse won gold in the 100 m backstroke at the 2015 Summer Universiade and was the 2015-16 CIS swimmer of the year while swimming at the University of Toronto.[8]


Masse started swimming at a young age for the Windsor Essex Swim team and was coached by Andrei Semenov. She was then recruited to swim with the University of Toronto swim team where her performances earned her the award of the 2015-16 CIS swimmer of the year.

She competed for Canada's Olympic team at the 2016 Summer Olympics.[9] Masse was Canada's lead competitor in the 100 m backstroke at the games. She set and improved the national record in the 100 backstroke in both the heats and semi-finals. In the final she swam to a bronze medal tie with Fu Yuanhui while again bettering the national record, setting it at 58.76.[10]

World record holder

At the 2017 Canadian Swimming Championships she broke the Americas record in the 100 m backstroke in a time of 58.21 which is also the fastest time ever in a textile suit and the 3rd fastest time in history.[11] Masse followed up her national championships with competition at the 2017 World Aquatics Championships in Budapest. There she broke a world record that had stood for eight years, all en route to winning her first world championship title in 58.10 seconds.[4] With the title, she became the first Canadian woman to become a world champion and first Canadian to win a title since Brent Hayden.[4] An elated Masse said after the race that "I don't think it's really sunk in yet. I touched the wall, I looked back and I had to make sure I as looking at the right name and the right time. I was just super excited in the moment. After the Olympics I just gained a lot more confidence in myself and experience. I gained a lot from just doing that routine for a week, doing prelims, semis and finals. All that experience really helps and makes you feel more confident."[4]

Masse followed up her world record by participating in the final of the mixed 4 × 100 m medley with the lead-off backstroke leg of the race. Yuri Kisil anchored the team in the final freestyle leg, pulling the team into a tie for bronze with the Chinese team.[12] She competed in the women's 200 m backstroke setting the Canadian record at 2:05.97 in the semis and qualifying for the final second overall, but was unable to duplicate her time and placed fifth at 2:07.04 ahead of teammate Hilary Caldwell.[13] Following the championships the town of La Salle, Ontario dedicated an August 18 day to fest her accomplishments and celebrated with her and a town barbecue.[14]


Masse was named as part of Canada's team at the 2018 Commonwealth Games.[15][16] She began her part of the competition in her preferred event, the 100 m. Masse set two Commonwealth Games records en route to the final. In the final she again set the record, just out-touching Emily Seebohm for the gold medal. After seeing she had won the event she told reports how she felt about the win and coming in to the event as the favourite, saying, "Relief, happiness. Just coming into another big meet with kind of a target on your back is something relatively new to me. So I’m still trying to kind of focus on my stroke and what I can control and not worry too much about outside pressures or anything like that."[17] Masse followed up her victory in the 100 m back with a gold in the 200 m backstroke the next day. She again set a Commonwealth Games record, finishing ahead of 17 year old teammate Taylor Ruck.[18] Masse ended her games with a silver medal and a Canadian record in the 50 m backstroke and another silver medal in 4 × 100 m medley relay event.


Masse successfully defended her title in the 100 backstroke at the FINA World Championships in Gwangju, South Korea with a time of 58.60.

Personal bests

Long course (50 m pool)

Event Time[2] Venue Date Notes
50 m backstroke 27.64 World Championships, Budapest 26 July 2017 NR
100 m backstroke 58.10 World Championships, Budapest 25 July 2017 NR
200 m backstroke 2:05.97 World Championships, Budapest 28 July 2017 NR

Short course (25 m pool)

Event Time[2] Venue Date Notes
50 m backstroke 26.15 Varsity Pool, Toronto 22 February 2018 NR
100 m backstroke 56.02 WFCU Centre, Windsor 6 December 2016 NR


  1. Lohn, John (April 7, 2016). "Kylie Masse Drops Canadian Mark in 100 Back (59.06); USA's Ryan Murphy Pops 52.57". Swimvortex. Retrieved April 10, 2016.
  2. "Kylie Masse". Swim Canada. Retrieved April 12, 2016.
  3. "Kylie Masse COC profile". Canadian Olympic Committee. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  4. "Canada's Kylie Masse breaks world record in historic performance". CBC Sports. July 25, 2017.
  5. "Champion again: Kylie Masse repeats as 100m backstroke gold medallist at swimming worlds". CBC Sports. July 23, 2019.
  6. "Official Results 2018 Commonwealth Games Women's 100m Backstroke Final". April 7, 2018.
  7. Gregory Strong (April 6, 2016). "Canadian swimming trials: Kylie Masse breaks 2 national marks, qualifies for Rio". CBC Sports.
  8. Paula Nichols (April 7, 2016). "Masse sets national record as five more swimmers qualify for Rio 2016". Canadian Olympic Committee.
  9. "Olympic Team Nominated for Rio 2016". Swimming Canada. Swimming Canada. 10 April 2016. Retrieved 27 April 2016.
  10. "Swimmer Kylie Masse wins Canada's 4th medal in Rio". CBC Sports. August 10, 2016.
  11. Sutherland, James (April 6, 2017). "Kylie Masse Posts Fastest Textile, 3rd Fastest Ever 100 BK In 58.21". Swim Swam. Retrieved April 7, 2017.
  12. "World record-breaking swimmer Masse adds bronze in mixed relay". CBC Sports. July 26, 2017.
  13. "Canadian mixed relay team swims to bronze at aquatics worlds". CBC Sports. July 29, 2017.
  14. "Town of LaSalle dedicates special day to Olympic swimmer Kylie Masse". CBC Sports. August 19, 2017.
  15. "Swimming Canada Nominates 26 Athletes to Canada's 2018 Commonwealth Games Team". Swimming Canada. 26 September 2017. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  16. "Oleksiak, Masse headline Canadian swim team for Commonwealth Games". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). 26 September 2017. Retrieved 27 September 2017.
  17. "Kylie Masse maintains domination of backstroke with gold at Commonwealth Games". National Post. April 7, 2018.
  18. "Kylie Masse, Taylor Ruck headline huge day for Canada at Commonwealth Games". CBC Sports. April 8, 2018.
Preceded by
Gemma Spofforth
Women's 100 metre backstroke
world record holder (long course)

25 July 2017 – 28 July 2018
Succeeded by
Kathleen Baker
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