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On Saturday more than 100 'merfolk' descended on the town of Suhl in Germany to take part in a swimming championship.

The world's first 'Meerjungfrauenschwimmen' or 'mermaid swimming' contest was held this weekend, pitting German states against one another.

'Merthletes' were aged between eight and 48, swimming either 50 metres (children) or 100 metres (adults) wearing mermaid tails.

According to the Local, the states of Bavaria, Thuringia and Baden-W├╝rttemberg had two wins each at the end of the day of races.

Lotta Muller won the eight to nine year olds race, and Alexander Sengpiel beat out just a couple of men to win the adult race.

Mermaid swimming, essentially swimming with tails, has been on the rise in Germany as a popular leisure activity.

Organisers claimed this was the first time that 'Merfolk' had been put into offical competition.

In keeping with the original Hans Christian Andersson story, the losers were turned into sea foam.

Just kidding.

HT the Local

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