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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Another View Of Eilat



Link courtesy of Hadar Ben Dror, organiser for open water swimming competitions in Eilat, Israel including the FINA-cancelled 2014 FINA World Junior Open Water Swimming Championships [due to security concerns].

Tuomas Kaario Succeeds Across The Gulf Of Finland

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Finnish marathon swimmer Tuomas Kaario succeeded at swimming across the Gulf of Finland over a 2-day period on July 27th and 28th.

After 21 hours 36 minutes in the water, he successfully pioneered the 58 km course from Estonia to Finland across the Baltic Sea.



Photos of Tuomas Kaario courtesy of Päivi Pälvimäki and Petri Krook/HS from the start in Rohuneeme, Estonia, in the middle of Baltic Sea and at the finish in Porkkala, Finland.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Elaine Howley To Forge New Opportunities In Idaho

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Tomorrow, one of the world's most prolific swimming writers and marathon swimmers, Elaine Howley, will attempt an unprecedented 34-mile swim the length of Lake Pend Oreille in northern Idaho.

Howley was invited to take on this challenge by Eric Ridgway, the founder of the Long Bridge Swim in Idaho. Ridgway, a stalwart organizing the event for 19 years is shifting his focus to Howley in her marathon swim attempt.

Timed to fall a few days prior to this year’s Long Bridge Swim event, her crossing will help promote the Long Bridge Swim and draw attention to the aquatic recreational opportunities in the greater Sandpoint area.

We have such an incredibly beautiful lake here that I am sure that we are going to have many more open water swimmers coming in the years ahead to take on the challenges of this fresh water playground,” says Ridgway. “I have been involved with three prior ‘Big Lake Swims’ in Lake Pend Oreille, but all of those were as part of a relay team. I knew that someone would eventually come along to do it as a solo swim, and after talking with Elaine several years ago, I thought that she would be the ideal swimmer to accomplish this feat first. She is not only an amazing athlete, but she does so much to inspire and support others in the swimming world. She is going to open up a whole new venue for big open water swims in the Pacific Northwest.”

Howley will begin at Buttonhook Bay, the southernmost point in the lake, and swim northward to the finish at Sandpoint City Beach Park. Howley expects to cover the 54.7 km in 17 to 20 hours if weather conditions are fair. If conditions prove rough or windy, the swim could take more than 24 hours. Distance, cold and rough conditions are what Howley thrives on. She has completed crossings of the English Channel, Catalina Channel, Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, and numerous other distance swims including a 24-hour, 38-mile training swim in Lake Cochituate in Wayland, Massachusetts and an Ice Mile.

After that most recent great experience, I’m feeling really confident about this upcoming big swim,” Howley says. “It’s a total privilege to be invited to do this swim, and I’m very grateful for the community support I’ve already had in planning the logistics.”

Howley, like many of her experience, has recruited an experienced crew: husband Mark Howley, sports nutritionist Sunny Blende, kayaker Randy Hixon, and observer Andrew Malinak. Representatives from her sponsors, women’s clothing company Athleta and sports nutrition product company UCAN, will also be following a broadcast of her swim via the Long Bridge Swim Facebook page.

From what I’ve been told, it’s one of the most beautiful places on the planet to swim. So, sign me up! I’m excited to be embarking on this amazing journey.”

Expect success tomorrow and the day after tomorrow from one of the world's most accomplished marathon swimmers.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Jon Erikson, A Giant In The Sport, Passes Away

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

In a year where accolades deservedly showered upon Jon Erikson, he unexpectedly passed away yesterday.

From the age of 14 when he trained under Rosemary George and crossed the English Channel in 11 hours 23 minutes in 1969 to his last days, the ultimate in a channel swimmer was always fondly remembered, not only for his swimming exploits but also for his personality and good cheer.

In June, Erikson was inducted in the International Swimming Hall of Fame as an Honor Open Water Swimmer after a 12-year career with these achievements:

• 11 English Channel crossings (4 single crossing, 2 double crossings, and 1 triple crossing in 38 hours 27 minutes)
• 31 professional marathon swims in Canada, Mexico, United States, and Argentina
• the first crossing of Canada's Chaleur Bay
• 2 training swims over a 37-mile Chicago-to-Michigan City course including a 24 hour 30 minute swim and a 19 hour 12 minute swim in 1980

Erikson will also be honored and fondly remembered at the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference on the Isle of Bute in Scotland on September 19th-21st.

For more information on the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame ceremonies, see his acceptance speech and introduction video below. For more information on Erikson's illness, visit here. Erikson talks about this three-way crossing of the English Channel here.

For more information on the Global Open Water Swimming Conference on the Isle of Bute where Erikson will be remembered, visit here.





Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Special Olympics Open Water Expands And Excels

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

As the Commonwealth Games remains one of the few international holdouts to offer open water swimming competition, the Special Olympics continues to develop its own open water swimming initiatives and programs around the world.

Intellectually disabled athletes from around the world continue to break down barriers as they venture pas the shoreline, proving that open water swimming can be a safe, competitive and challenging sport for all.

The first Special Olympics Ireland Open Water Swimming Championships were held last week in preparation for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles.

Pam Beacom said, "Aisling Beacom was the only Irish swimmer eligible for 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games. She won a silver medal in the 1.5 km sea swim in the city of Marathon, Greece. Now we have lots of athletes to choose from."

Beacom from Wicklow Town was one of 126 athletes who represented Ireland at the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Athens, Greece where she participated in both the 800m pool event and the 1.5 km sea swim.

It wasn’t the first time that Beacom had represented Ireland on the international stage. Through the Special Olympics Ireland’s Athlete Leadership Programme, she visited the United Nations in New York, participated in the RCP Tiburon Mile in San Francisco twice, and volunteered at the 2007 Special Olympics World Summer Games in China.

The legacy of open water swimming grows within the Special Olympics community. Photo shows Team Ireland swimmer Aisling Beacom with her bronze medal in the 800m freestyle with her brother Shane in Athens.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Open Water Swimming Not Included

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

The Olympic Games has an open water swimming event. The Special Olympics World Summer Games have an open water swimming event. The World University Games have open water swimming events. The European Swimming Championships have open water swimming events. The Southeast Asian Games have open water swimming events. The Pan Pacific Swimming Championships have an open water swimming event as do the Asian Beach Games, South American Beach Games, Polar Olympics, and many other international competitions.

But what about the Commonwealth Games?

Triathlon events are also held at these international competitions, often with the swimming leg of the triathlon held in the same venue as the open water swimming races.

With the pool swimming events of the Commonwealth Games 2014 winding down today in Glasgow, Scotland, it is a wonder where the open water swimming events are, especially with the prominence of such open water swimming powerhouses like Australia, England, Canada, and Ireland in these competitions.

Many of 72 of the countries and territories that participate in these quadrennial international competitions have national open water swimming teams, from New Zealand and South Africa to Hong Kong and Singapore.

If triathlon is included, where are the open water swimming events in the Commonwealth Games? The open water swimming competitions do not incur significant or additional costs: a few buoys, escort boats, start and finish pontoons, and much of the exact same equipment used by the triathlon competition.

Open water swimming is one of the 20 optional sports that a Commonwealth Games Organising Committee can choose to include in their sports programme. Seven in total are needed to be selected.

For some undefined reasons, Gold Coast Australia 2018 has not included open water swimming in its sports programme. In the heart of open water swimming in the Southern Hemisphere, in the epicenter of open water swimming Down Under, why isn't open water swimming included?

The locals know how to organize a race. The Australians appreciate swimming competitions. Open water events would help to showcase the natural beauty of the Gold Coast.

If triathlon was selected as an optional event, it would seem that open water swimming is an easily organized addition too.

Manchester 2002, Melbourne 2010 and Glasgow 2014 had a triathlon but no open water swimming although a venue was available. Note: New Delhi 2010 declined triathlon.

Unfortunately, if the national aquatic sports organisations in each host country have not supported open water swimming, but rather are more interested in promoting the addition of more events to the pool programme. But fortunately the world of open water swimming has the Olympics, Special Olympics World Summer Games, World University Games, European Swimming Championships, Southeast Asian Games, Pan Pacific Swimming Championships, Asian Beach Games, South American Beach Games do.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Monday, July 28, 2014

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Speakers

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

The speakers, presentations, honorees and award recipients at 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference will cover a wide range in the sport of ice swimming, channel swimming, marathon swimming and open water swimming, all held on the Isle of Bute in Scotland on September 19th-21st.

The long list of presenters will include luminaries from Scotland, Australia, UK, Ireland, Sweden, USA, New Zealand, South Africa, Russia, Slovenia, Jersey, Hong Kong, Hawaii, Serbia, Indonesia, Argentina, the Netherlands, and Canada:

* Colleen Blair (Scotland): The History of Scottish Swimming
* Christopher Guesdon (Australia): Multidimensional Roles In The Sport
* Swimming the Oceans Seven: A roundtable discussion moderated by Kevin Murphy (UK) with Stephen Redmond (Ireland), Anna-Carin Nordin (Sweden), Darren Miller (USA), Kimberley Chambers (New Zealand), and Adam Walker (UK)
* Nuala Moore (Ireland): The Mindset of 1000m at 0ºC
* Ram Barkai (South Africa): First World Ice Swimming Championships Update
* Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia): The Feminine Code of Achievement - How a Lady from Down Under Revolutionise Professional Marathon Swimming
* Alexey Salmin Pavlovich and Dmitry Dragozhilov (Russia): 2016 Winter Swimming World Championships
* Rok Kerin (Slovenia): Lifestyle Benefits From Open Water Swimming
* Penny Dean (USA): Preparing for the English Channel [shown swimming in above photo]
* Sally Minty-Gravett (Jersey): Motivating Swimmers
* Dmitry Blokhin and Aleksei Veller (Russia): First World Ice Swimming Championships
* Ned Denison (Ireland): Swimming The World
* Steven Munatones (USA): Shark Encounters in the Open Water

The documentary films to be shown at the Conference include the following:

* Bruckner Chase (USA): BlueJourney-Amerika Samoa – Stronger Together: The Waterman’s Way
* Matthew Moseley (USA): Dancing With The Water, Crossing of Lake Pontchartrain
* Admiral Konstantin Sidenko (Russia): Bering Strait Swim Chukotka - Alaska in 2013
* Simon Holliday (UK) and Doug Woodring (USA): The Clean Swim – Hong Kong to Macau 2014

The bios of the speakers are as follows:

Colleen Blair from Scotland has crossed the English Channel, North Channel, and Loch Ness as well as circumnavigated Manhattan Island and the island of Jersey in the Channel Islands. She is the first person to swim across the Pentland Firth for which she was nominated for the 2011 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year.

Christopher Guesdon from Australia created the modern format of the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim. He officiated races throughout Oceania, Asia, Africa the Americas and Europe and founded the Australian Long Distance Swimming Federation. He was a bureau member of the International Long Distance Swimming Federation, a director of the World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation, a member of the FINA Open Water Swimming Technical Committee, International Swimming Committee of Swimming Australia and Sports Development Committee Confederation of Sport Australia, the Secretary of Swimming Australia Open Water Swimming Committee, and is the Programme Vice President of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame.

Kevin Murphy from the United Kingdom Kevin Murphy is an Honor Open Water Swimmer in the International Swimming Hall of Fame and an Honour Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. He has swum across the English Channel more times than any man in history and currently serves as the Honorary Secretary of the Channel Swimming & Piloting Federation and President of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. A reporter by profession, he is a member of the Dover Beach Crew, and done several dozens of notable channel and marathon swims throughout one of the most illustrious careers in the sport including the North Channel, Loch Ness, Isle of Wight, Lake Balaton, Nile River, Capri to Napoli, Majorca to Minorca, and a 52 hour 30 minute three-way English Channel attempt.

Stephen Redmond from Ireland is a former rugby player and triathlete who was the first person in history to achieve the Oceans Seven (swims across the English Channel, North Channel, Catalina Channel, Tsugaru Channel, Strait of Gibraltar, Cook Strait, and Molokai Channel). He was voted as the 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year and is the protagonist of a film called Defeating Oceans Seven and in Explorers: Adventures of the Century.

Anna-Carin Nordin from Sweden is a mother who was the first female in history to achieve the Oceans Seven (English Channel, North Channel, Catalina Channel, Tsugaru Channel, Strait of Gibraltar, Cook Strait, and Molokai Channel). She did an Ice Mile in Callifayd, swam 43.4 km from Eckerö, Finland to Grisslehamn, Sweden, competed on the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup circuit, and swam 20 km from Norrfjärden-Mellanfjärden along the coastline in north of Sweden.

Darren Miller from the United States of America is a former sprint freestyler and butterflyer at the Pennsylvania State University who crossed the English Channel in 2010 and went on to flawlessly complete the remaining 6 swims of the Oceans Seven challenge in the name of his charity, Team Forever, which benefits the Forever Fund at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh. Miller is a motivational speaker on concepts relevant to business and endurance and rooted on helping those less fortunate while inspiring his audiences to leverage the gifts they have been given to do the same.

Kimberley Chambers from New Zealand is former ballerina who nearly lost her leg before turning to swimming for rehabilitation. She is on track to complete the Oceans Seven (English Channel, North Channel, Catalina Channel, Tsugaru Channel, Strait of Gibraltar, Cook Strait, and Molokai Channel) and member of the Night Train Swimmers, a relay that swam from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Farallon Islands off the coast of northern California. She was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year.

Adam Walker from the United Kingdom is on track to complete the Oceans Seven (English Channel, North Channel, Catalina Channel, Tsugaru Channel, Strait of Gibraltar, Cook Strait, and Molokai Channel). Mad Adam or Ocean Walker is a former water polo player and a motivational speaker who offers technical swim camps and one-on-one clinics in the United Kingdom and across the European continent and Africa, including the Swim Camp Malta. He swims for charities like Sportsaid and the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society on his solo swims and relays.

Nuala Moore from Ireland is an ice swimmer, coach and North Channel Secretary of the Irish Long Distance Swimming Association. She documents ice swimming, she completed 1,800m at 3°C, 1000m at 0°C water in Murmansk 2013, and compete in 0°C in Tyumen, Murmansk, Finland and China. She completed the Lake Zurich 26.4 km solo and was a member of the Round Ireland relay team and the Bering Strait Swim that was selected as the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year. Moore was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year and is a speaker with the World Explorers Bureau. She received the Margaret Smith Award, was awarded the Irish Long Distance Swimming Association Female Swimmer of the Year, and was nominated for the 2013 Outsider of the Year by Outsider Magazine.

Ram Barkai from South Africa is the founder of the International Ice Swimming Association and has organized a number of extreme swims including the Patagonia Extreme Cold Water Challenge. The renowned ice swimmer has completed the most southernmost ice swim ever performed in Antarctica and he was among the first individuals to swim around Cape Horn at the tip of South America. Barkai also organized the Cadiz Freedom Swim, the Speedo Ice Mile Africa and appeared on Stan Lee's Superhuman Showdown television series. He completed a 1.3 km swim in Folgefonna Glacier in Jondal, Norway in 0.2˚C water at 1000m above sea level. He was nominated for the Night Jar Travel Adventurers of the Year (South Africa) and the 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year.

Shelley Taylor-Smith from Australia is considered one of the greatest marathon swimmers in history and is an Honor Open Water Swimmer in the International Swimming Hall of Fame and an Honour Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. The 7-time world professional marathon swimming champion is also one of the longest serving members on the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee). She is a motivational speaker and coach in Western Australia who won the inaugural FINA World Swimming Championship 25 km in 1990 and held the record for the 48 km Manhattan Island Marathon Swim for many years.

Alexey Salmin Pavlovich from Russia is a member of the Economy and Natural Resources Management Committee of the Tyumen Regional Duma who plays a significant leadership role in winter swimming in Russia.

Dmitry Dragozhilov from Russia is the Director of Winter Swimming in the Tyumen region of Russia who plays a significant leadership role in the Winter Swimming World Championships in Tyumen, Russia.

Rok Kerin from Slovenia was ranked on the FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix and the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup circuits. The multilingual, well-traveled professional marathon swimmer founded the Rok Kerin Swim Academy and participated in the FINA World Championships in Shanghai, China. He is also a well-regarded speaker and event organizer of open water events.

Penny Dean from the United States of America is the only person in history to simultaneously hold channel records in both the English and Catalina Channels. She is an Honor Open Water Swimmer in the International Swimming Hall of Fame and an Honour Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. She followed up with coaching several world champions and record holders and an administrator with USA Swimming. She also authored four books on open water swimming and organized the 1984 race across the Catalina Channel, the first since the 1927 Wrigley Ocean Marathon. She has coached record relays swim (both directions) in the English Channel and set the English Channel record in 1978, the Catalina Channel one-way record in 1976 and the two-way record in 1977.

Sally Minty-Gravett from Jersey is an Honour Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame who has crossed the English Channel five separate times over five decades. She leads the Jersey Long Distance Swimming Club and mentors many individuals of all ages to become comfortable in the sea and to cross channels around the world. She was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year and became the first woman to complete a crossing from Sark to Jersey in 2014.

Dmitry Blokhin from Russia is the Vice Chairperson for the Committee of Physical Culture and Sports at the City Administration of Murmansk in Russia. He is also a coach and teacher who is also organizing global and local ice and winter swimming competitions in Murmansk.

Aleksei Veller from Russia is the Head of Murmansk city municipality. Under his administration, the International Winter Swimming Competition (or the Polar Olympics) is held annually in Murmansk, Russia as well as the Murmansk Mile in Kola Bay. He signed the Declaration on cooperation between the Murmansk City Municipality and the International Ice Swimming Association to organize the 1st World Ice Swimming Championship in the City of Murmansk in March 2015.

Ned Denison from Ireland is an Honour Administrator in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and has completed the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming as well as a Round Jersey Solo, Jersey to France crossing, Lake Zurich Marathon Swim, Rottnest Channel Swim, Robben Island and numerous other channel swims around the world including the S.C.A.R. Swim Challenge, False Bay, Strait of Gibraltar and the Santa Barbara Channel. He also completed an Ice Mile and organizes the Cork Distance Week.

Steven Munatones from the United States of America created the Daily News of Open Water Swimming, Oceans Seven, Openwaterpedia, WOWSA Awards, Half Century Club, Tsugaru Channel Swimming Association, and the World Open Water Swimming Association. He was inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame as an Honour Swimmer and served on the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee. He serves as a consultant to the Guinness Book of World Records and was the Technical Delegate for the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Athens, participated on the USA Triathlon Swim Collar Task Force, and was the NBC commentator for the 2008 Olympic 10K Marathon Swim in Beijing.

Bruckner Chase from the United States of America is known as Uila O Le Sami. He is an environmentalist, waterman, triathlete, ocean advocate, filmmaker, coach, speaker and writer who creates ocean awareness initiatives with his wife Michelle Evans-Chase. He created the innovative 2Samoas/1 Ocean curriculum and the Toa o le Tai program. He also runs the prone paddle boarding program in Upper Township, New Jersey for individuals with spinal injuries with the Bacharach Rehabilitation Hospital Swimming and Paddling Unified Team Program. He created the film, BlueJourney-Amerika Samoa – Stronger Together: The Waterman’s Way and the Legion of Ocean Heroes program, and the Ocean City Swim Club.

Matthew Moseley from the United States of America is a writer, media consultant and an author of Dear Dr. Thompson who made the first swimming descent of the Colorado River through Canyonlands for 49 miles. He also crossed Lake Pontchartrain as a duo relay in 2012 and as a solo swimmer in 2014. His unprecedented solo crossing is the subject of a documentary film by Wayne Ewing.

Admiral Konstantin Sidenko from Russia is the Head of the Eastern Military District Forces and was named as the Head of the Project’s Organisation Committee.

Simon Holliday from the United Kingdom completed the English Channel set a record swimming from Hong Kong to Macau where he was Walkerized with pink dolphins. A documentary of his swim was produced by Scuba Zoo.

The following honourees will also describe their careers, motivations and swims:

Melissa Cunningham from Australia is the 2014 Irving Davids – Captain Roger Wheeler Award recipient and an Honour Swimmer in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. She was the world champion in the 25 km race at the 1994 FINA World Swimming Championships in Rome and was a member of the 93 km Malta to Sicily International Relay 1996 in 19 hours 11 minute.. She also served as an announcer and administrator at the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim in Beijing as part of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. Cunningham is an ambassador for the McGrath Foundation where she is utilizing her passion and skills in the water to help others via the program, Every Stroke Counts for which she was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year.

Pádraig Mallon from Ireland, the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, is an ice swimmer, Ironman triathlete, extreme swimmer, English Channel and North Channel swimmer and event organiser. He is the vice Chairman of the Irish Long Distance Swimming Association and one of the organisers of the Irish Marathon Swim Series and chairman of the Camlough Lake Water Festival. He received the 2013 Senior Individual Sports Personality Award and a nomination by Outsider Magazine for its Outsider People of the Year Award. He was the co-organiser of the 680 km Guinness World Record open water relay in Camlough Lake.

Olga Kozydub from Russia is the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year who won the 2013 FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix pro circuit as well as the 57 km Maratón Acuática Internacional Santa Fe – Coronda and the 32 km Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean and finished second at the 88 km Maratón Hernandarias-Paraná and competed in the 34 km Traversée international du lac Memphrémagog. She finished fourth overall in the 2012 FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix pro circuit.

Bering Strait Swim is the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, an unprecedented 6-day, 86 km relay across the Bering Strait from Cape Dezhnev in Chukotka, Russia to Cape Prince of Wales in Alaska, U.S.A. It included 68 ice swimmers from 16 countries and 15 regions of the Russian Federation covered the distance between the two continents in 6 days in water temperature between 2.5-10°C where orca killer whales and walruses were encountered close to Big Diomede Island. The swimmers included Vladimir Chegorin, Maria Chizhova, Elena Guseva, Ram Barkai, Jack Bright, Oksana Veklich, Aleksandr Jakovlevs, Matías Ola, Henri Kaarma, Toomas Haggi, Nuala Moore, Anne Marie Ward, Toks Viviers, Melissa O’Reilly, Ryan Stramrood, Cristian Vergara, Craig Lenning, Rafal Ziobro, Andrew Chin, Jackie Cobell, James Pittar, Paolo Chiarino, Mariia Yrjö-Koskinen, Ivan Papulshenko, Zdenek Tlamicha, Zhou Hanming, Oleg Adamov, Andrei Agarkov, Alekseev Semen, Tatiana Alexandrova, Roman Belan, Elena Semenova, Alexander Brylin, Afanasii Diackovskii, Vladimir Nefatov, Evgenii Dokuchaev, Oleg Docuckaev, Roman Efimov, Dmitrii Filitovich, Olga Filitovich, Victor Godlevskiy, Olga Golubeva, Alexei Golubkin, Alexander Golubkin, Alexandr Iurkov, Oleg Ivanov, Pavel Kabakov, Eduard Khodakovskiy, Aleksandr Komarov, Aleksandr Kuliapin, Andrey Kuzmin, Irina Lamkina, Vladimir Litvinov, Andrey Mikhalev, Victor Moskvin, Nikolay Petshak, Sergey Popov, Vladimir Poshivailov, Grigorii Prokopchuk, Dmitrii Zalka, Natalia Seraya, Viacheslav Shaposhnikov, Olga Sokolova, Andrei Sychev, Alexei Tabakov, and Nataliia Usachaeva.

International Ice Swimming Association is the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. It is a governing body of extreme swimming founded by Ram Barkai to conduct and govern extreme cold-water swimming events around the world including Ice Miles where the maximum water temperature is 41°F (5°C) and wetsuits are not allowed.

Sandra Bucha from the United States of America is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. She won the 24 Heures La Tuque in 1974 with Jon Kinsella. During her professional marathon swimming career, no female was able to challenge and only three men finished ahead of her in her 9 professional marathon races while she was a student at Stanford University, including the Traversée international du lac St-Jean and the Chicago Lake Front 10-mile Swim. She also won the 1971 National Senior AAU Long Distance Swimming Championships and set an American record in the 200m freestyle.

Jon Erikson from the United States of America is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. He completed 11 English Channel crossings including an unprecedented three-way 38 hour 27 minute crossing, 31 professional marathon swims in Canada, Mexico, US, and Argentina including five Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean and three 24 Heures La Tuque events.

Elizabeth Fry from the United States of America is an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. She is a member of the Half Century Club and the 24-hour Club, and achieved the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming. Her most recent English Channel crossing set the record for the oldest person ever to do a two-way crossing. She was the first person to complete the unprecedented double Ederle Swim, a 35-mile swim from Manhattan Island in New York to Sandy Hook, New Jersey. At the age of 50, she broke the record for swimming clockwise around Manhattan and became the first woman to swim around Manhattan Island in that direction when she completed the course in 11 hours 41 minutes. She is the race director of the 25 km St. Vincent’s Foundation Swim Across the Sound. She has crossed the Catalina Channel and Strait of Gibraltar, and has completed In Search of Memphre and the Round Jersey solo circumnavigation.

Vojislav Mijić from Serbia is an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. A 2-time member of the 24-hour Club, Mijić is the race director for the Šabac Swim Marathon and the Epiphany Swimming For the Holy Cross of Honour. He won hundreds of marathon swimming competitions in Serbia, Macedonia, Croatia, Bulgaria, Argentina, U.S.A. (from Hawaii to New Jersey), Yugoslavia, Italy, Brazil, Czech Republic, Brazil, the Netherlands, Egypt, Syria and Greece. As the founder of the Committee for Marathon and Long Distance Swimming in the Republic of Serbia, he has completed three swims recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records, . He received from the Government of the Republic of Serbia, a 2008 Recognition as a Meritorious Sportsman and was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year.

James Anderson from the United States of America is an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator He is the race founder and director of the Hawaiian Christmas Looong Distance Invitational Rough-H2O Swim in Hawaii, the race director for the Waikiki Roughwater Swim, and organized the 2000 FINA World Open Water Swimming Championships in Honolulu. He organized the 1999 USA Swimming 25 km National Open Water Swimming Championships, the 1991 and 1992 USA Swimming National 10K Open Water Swimming Championships, the North Shore Swim Series, and was a consultant for the 1983 Cole Classic in Australia. He was the founder and president of the Hawaiian Channel Swim Association and published the Hawaii Sports Calendar. He was inducted as a member of the Hawaii Swimming Hall of Fame in 2005.

Dr. Jane Katz from the United States of America is an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator. She is a renowned educator, speaker, coach and author with a background as a world-class competitive and long-distance swimmer. A professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice of the City University of New York, she teaches fitness and swimming to New York City police and firefighters. As a member of the 1964 United States Synchronized Swimming Performance Team in Tokyo, Dr. Katz helped pioneer the acceptance of synchronized swimming as an Olympic event. At the XXVII Olympiad in Sydney, Australia in 2000, Dr. Katz was awarded the FINA Amateur Certificate of Merit to honor her lifetime of "dedication and contribution to the development" of the sport of swimming. She created a popular series of instructional books and videos including Swim Basics – Aquatics for Lifetime Fitness and Your Water Workout: No-Impact Aerobics and Strength Training From Yoga, Pilates, Tai Chi and More and Swimming For Total Fitness co-authored by Nancy P. Bruning.

Indonesian Swimming Federation Open Water Committee is an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Organisation that hosted the Asian Beach Games and the Southeast Asian Games (SEA Games). Its members include Ismail Ning (member), Amir Husein (Head of Open Water Swimming Committee), Ari Tribusono (member), Ray Sani (member), Liza G. Januar (Deputy of Secretary General of PRSI or the Persatuan Renang Seluruh Indonesia).

Claudio Plit from Argentina is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. He is race director of the FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup in Viedma and the Mar de Plata and Maratón Acuática Internacional Ciudad de Rosario. He competed in and won every major professional marathon swim around the world over a 30-year period. During his peak between 1974 and 1985, he first or second nine times and finished in the top 3 in 45 professional marathon swims throughout North and South America, Europe and Africa. He has completed more than 250 professional marathon swims over 8 hours in duration including the 57 km Maratón Acuática Internacional Santa Fe-Coronda, the English Channel, the Beltquerung, 17 Traversée internacionale du lac Memphrémagog, 25 Traversée internacionale du lac St-Jean, 15 Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli, 20 Atlantic City Around-the-Island Marathon Swims, the 88 km Hernandarias-Paraná Marathon, and crossed the English Channel twice. He won races in the Nile River and in the Suez Canal and won 3 two-way 64 km Traversée internacionale du lac St-Jean events. He remains active as a coach and escorts swimmers participating on the FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix circuit and 25 swimmers who have crossed the English Channel. He was the president of the World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation from 1980-1982 and 1990.

Judith van Berkel-de Nijs from the Netherlands is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. She was ranked No. 1 by the World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation in 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968 and 1970. She crossed the English Channel in 1969 and won many professional marathon races over both men and women, including the 49.8 km Lake Ontario swim, the 30.5 km Ohrid Lake swim in Macedonia, two 32 km Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli races, the 40 km Alexandria race in the Suez Canal, the 32 km Traversée internacionale du lac St-Jean, the 16 km Hamilton Marathon Swim, the 24 Heures La Tuque, and the 1968 Canalswim Cape Rennes from France to Dover, England. [Represented by Niek Kloots of the Netherlands]

David Yudovin from the United States of America is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. He began channel swimming in 1976 and remains active competing over 35 solo marathon and channel swims including 15 firsts. He has completed 4 Catalina Channel crossings, a Santa Barbara Channel crossing, a Santa Cruz Island crossing, a Strait of Gibraltar crossing, a Tsugaru Channel crossing, a English Channel crossing, and other swims in Sunda Strait, Indonesia - Java to Sumatra, Cook Strait, Cape Verde (Africa), Maio to Santiago Islands, Azores Islands (Portugal
), Madiera Islands (Portugal
), and in Central Africa,

Mercedes Gleitze from Great Britain is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Pioneer Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. She helped launch the first waterproof watch by Rolex during her English Channel crossing in 1927, on her 8th attempt. She attempted the North Channel 7 times without success. In 1928, she became the first person to swim the Strait of Gibraltar from Spain to Morocco. She accomplished a number of marathon swims in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa including in the Thames River in 1923, Lough Neagh in 1929, Hellspont in 1930, Galloway Bay in 19+ hours and across Sydney Harbor. She completed a 30-hour endurance swim in Cork, Ireland in 1930 and swam in Cape Town, South Africa in 1932 to bring her total number of marathon swims to 51. With the money she earned from her swims, she established the Mercedes Gleitze Home for the Homeless in Leicester, England which opened in 1933 until it was destroyed during World War II. [Represented by her daughter Doloranda Pember]

George Young from Canada is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Pioneer Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer. As a 17-year-old, Young was the sole finisher of the 1927 Wrigley Ocean Marathon, a 20.2-mile race across the Catalina Channel, winning the US$25,000 first prize. He was voted as an Associate for Life in the International Professional Swimmers Association in New York City in 1927. [Represented by members of the Catalina Channel Swimming Federation]

Dale Petranech from the United States of America is an International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Contributer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator. He is a member of the Half Century Club for a crossing of the Catalina Channel. He remains the Honorary Secretary of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and started the 1-Hour Postal Swim in 1978. In 1977, he became the first U.S. Swimming Open Water Swimming Committee Chairman where developed a successful domestic and international program. He assisted U.S. Masters Swimming to form its own independent organization. He was chairman of the FINA Open Water Swimming Commission that made recommendations to FINA for inclusion of open water swimming into FINA and served as the Honorary Secretary of the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

The Dublin Night Swim

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Two years ago, Ger Kennedy arranged 10 friends to meet for a night swim.

Dial forward 2 years later, 200 swimmers came to the largest night swim in Ireland at Seapoint Beach.

A swim with friends has now transformed itself to The Dublin Night Swim. "What a great night for everybody to enjoy the experience of night swimming," said Kennedy.

"A massive 200 swimmers took to the water under our safety net. Thanks to all the support swimmers, kayakers and a group of voluntary helpers to make this the largest night swim in the country and thank you swimmers for your attendance."

For more information, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Pier To Pier

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

The 80-meter-long Umhlanga Pier in Durban, South Africa (opened in 2007), The Rotonda a Mare in Senigallia, Italy (opened in 1923), the 312-meter-long Clevedon Pier in Somerset, United Kingdom (opened in 1869), the 100-meter-long Kastrup Pier in Kastrup, Denmark (opened in 2004), the 560-meter-long Huntington Beach Pier in Huntington Beach, California (opened in 1914), the 328-meter-long Los Muertos Pier in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (opened in 2013), the 382-meter-long Scheveningen Pier in Scheveningen, Holland (opened in 1959), the 524-meter-long Brighton Pier in Brighton, United Kingdom (opened in 1899), and the 1,841-meter-long Busselton Jetty in Busselton, Australia (opened in 1865) were named as the world's most beautiful piers by CNN.

It is also interesting to note that many these piers are used as landmarks for various open water swimming events or pods.

Photo shows the whale bone structure of the Umhlanga Pier that won the South African National Award for Outstanding Civil Engineering Achievement.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

The Great Lake Swim Attempt Cancelled

Courtesy of The Great Lake Swim, an attempt to swim 71 miles across Lake Michigan by Jamie Patrick.

"It is with great sadness and disappointment that we announce the cancellation of The Great Lake Swim this summer. Words are extremely hard to come by as I have been planning, training and dreaming of this swim for the past 8 months.

Due to lack of funding, the live broadcast and swim will not be happening this summer
."

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Onward On Stage

Courtesy of Diana Nyad and Josh Ravetch.

Diana Nyad has been talking about putting on a stage show for 20 years.

She is now finally getting it all together in Southern California on August 5th and 7th.

Nyad's one-woman show will be staged at the NoHo Arts Center in North Hollywood that is home to contemporary theaters, art galleries, cafes, and shops.

Tickets on sale here.


















Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

The Courage And Strength Of Women In South Africa

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Camps Bay Beach is an affluent suburb of Cape Town, South Africa.

Big Bay Events hosts the Women's Day Swim there every year on August 9th to commemorate the events of 1956 when women participated in a national march to petition against pass laws. This legislation required African persons to carry a document on them to prove that they were allowed to enter a white area.

More than 50,000 women staged a march in Pretoria to protest against the proposed amendments to the Urban Areas Act (commonly known as the pass laws) of 1950. They petitioned the prime minister, stood silently outside his office, and sang a protest song that has come to represent women's courage and strength.

Men and women can enter a team of up to 4 swimmers to swim 2 miles (4 x 800m loops) for a fun relay swim celebrating Woman's Day. Each team must include at least one lady.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Price Is Right. Shooting The Tides

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Erica Price volunteered for this year's Brooklyn Bridge Swim organized by NYC Swim.

"I love the ocean and swimming. It's humbling and wonderful [to volunteer], but there were volunteers giving out water and doing behind-the-scenes work who are the unsung heroes."

The New York City-based photographer specializes in editorial photography and started her Tides series last year. She talked about her work.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What is the Tides series?

Erica Price: With Tides, I swim out and try to get candid shots of people in the ocean. Just like street photographers do in the streets. Though not 100% of the captures are pure candids, they are all unplanned. Started photographing the series last year. I went out 4 times a week for a few months. Continuing the series this year.

This year I also want to get a few more posed shots on the beach and get some notes and stories written down. I really enjoy the character of these swimmers. Some I see quite often. Most I don't know, other than a casual hello.

After photographing them, I try to see them again and offer a print. Some underwater transparency would add a bit of more fun to the compositions.

I grew up near the shore. It is definitely a lot cleaner now than 15 years ago. I've been mainly situated around the Coney Island, Brighton Beach, and Sea Gate areas. I enjoy the stories of elderly swimmers the most, so most of my shots I have older people. I've seen photographers do features on surfers around the world. Recently saw someone did a series on English Channel swimmers, which seems to be closer to my style.


Daily News of Open Water Swimming: Why do you volunteer for the open water events? Why is it interesting or exciting?

Erica Price: Even if I can't partake as a swimmer at times, I love the atmosphere of just being there. Photographing people while they're in the water is super fun for me. As an avid swimmer I feel their excitement.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: Are you a swimmer yourself?

Erica Price: Yes. I try to be out in the ocean in the Summer and the pool in the colder months. I tried swimming as late as late October last season to slowly acclimate myself for quick dips in the winter, but I caught a flu bug early in the season.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What is hard to photograph about open water swimming?

Erica Price: I try to situate myself in the water and get a low angle on the swimmers, to photograph them from a swimmer's point of view. It's my style of shooting. I use a waterproof point-and-shoot if I'm out swimming amongst the others or a soft ewa-marine case for my DSLR, which is the setup I used for this shoot, if I'm documenting the event. I can be out there in the bleachers with a long lens, but prefer to be as close as possible and shoot wide. You do need permission from the organizers or register as a volunteer to be able to get that close. In the end, I think everyone wins. Participants have a better chance of getting a photo of them in the race. The organization gets more photos to choose from for their site or blog. I get to be in the water and do what I love, taking photos.

Daily News of Open Water Swimming: How can you best capture images in the open water? What advice do you have for parents and friends who are taking photos of swimmers in the open water?

Erica Price: There are several tips:

a. If you're using a camera housing, hard or soft, the main tip is to make sure you have a fresh enough silica pack in your camera housing. Things can get foggy.
b. Soft cases can be trickier. They're made one size fits many cameras. I accidentally changed the camera settings close to the end of the race, completely unknowingly. So, check your settings often. The hard cases give you quicker access to your camera buttons, but it can be quite heavy if you don't intend to keep it in the water most of the time. I chose a soft case for the Brooklyn Bridge Swim.
c. If the lens port gets wet and then starts to dry out, after a while, stubborn droplets will form and they can ruin a great shot. Salt water also leaves more residue. So you need to actively dunk the camera in and out of the water. The spit trick works well as an anti-fogging agent.
d. Always wash your cameras out with fresh water after getting back onto dry land. Don't forget to hydrate yourself as well.
e. Patience and practice.
f. Try to find out what the race course is before you get there and get there early to find a few unique vantage points.
g. Work as a group with other photographers. Try to group together and discuss where you will be shooting. In the heat of a moment it's easy to forget there are others trying to get their shot too. It's about the event and the swimmers.


For more information on Erica Price, visit here. For her Tides series, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

International Mermaid Swimming Instructors Association

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

The International Mermaid Swimming Instructors Association has got to be one of the most fun, innovative open water swimming governing body in the world.

Its captures the imagination. It enables entertainment. It powers pleasure in the most creative way.

Established in 2012 on the island of Boracay in the Philippines, the International Mermaid Swimming Instructors Association is a professional international mermaid training organization with certified swimming, Scuba diving and mermaid swimming instructors.

Already mermaid instructors have been certified from the Philippines, Germany, Japan, Switzerland and Austria. Prospective instructors learn education and training modalities, and receive practice and experience in various open water environments to provide the skills and foundations for a profitable business in the world of mermaid swimming.

Originally, the Philippine Mermaid Swimming Academy created the business model and then started to receive requests for its teaching programs.

The Philippine Mermaid Swimming Academy was highly successful in creating fun to offering these classes:

* Introduction to mermaid swimming and stretching
* How to wear and care for the mermaid tail
* Swimming with the mermaid tail and floaters
* Swimming without floaters
* Swimming practice and drills
* Mermaid Snorkeling
* Mermaid Scuba Diving
* Mermaid Fitness
* Modern Mermaid
* Mermaid Makeover
* Mermaid Free Diving: A Therapeutic Art
* Synchronized Mermaid Swimming
* Mermaid Safari

Ultimately, the International Mermaid Swimming Instructors Association was established in 2012 on Boracay Island to help the spread of concept of mermaiding and certification of its instructors.

In 2013, the Association launched Project M.O.M. (Mermaids On a Mission). "Our goal is to help educate rural areas and fishing villages with basic first aid and rescue training, educating them on the importance of sound environmental practices and proper waste management, personal and oral hygiene with our "Mermaids Always Smile" campaign. Future plans are to include these in our curriculum worldwide.

Another program is Mermaid Therapy which aims to help underprivileged children and children with special needs to overcome depression by engaging and assisting them in physical therapy, and to put it plainly, to simply bring joy to those who need it most
."

For more information, visit here.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Swimming In The Heart Of The Amazon

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

A small, but quickly emerging group of open water swimmers are located in Manaus in northern Brazil.

Manaus is the capital of the state of Amazonas where there are 3 rivers converge: the Amazon, Rio Negro and Rio Solimões with a passionate team of young and masters open water swimmers.

With a population of two million, it is the most populous city of Amazonas located in the middle of the Amazon rainforest. Known as the Heart of the Amazon and City of the Forest, Manaus is 1,450 km inland from the Atlantic Ocean.

Photo by Corrado Filipponi shows Martin Strel swimming in Manaus.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Where To Swim In A Pack?

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

When there is a pack of swimmers, where should you swim?

If you breathe primarily to the right, you want the pack on your right as you draft and sight off the lead swimmers.

If you breathe primarily to the left, you want the pack on your left as you draft and sight off the lead swimmers.

If you breathe bilaterally, either side works and the choice may be dictated by the winds, waves, or location of the turn buoys.

If you are ready to make a break, swim up the side of the lead swimmer, conserve energy as you draft for a while, and then make a break as you create separation.

If you are getting tired and need some time to catch your breathe, position yourself in the middle of the pack and allow the pack to help get you going again.

If you wish to set the pace and dictate the direction of the pack, swim out in front.

Photo shows the field at the BCT Gdynia Marathon in Poland.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

The Intensity Of Competition

Courtesy of BCT Gdynia Marathon in Poland.

What is the eye of the tiger in the open water swimming world?

* gazing out towards the horizon
* a calm intensity
* deep breathing with visualization of success
* confidence in managing the water and weather conditions
* understanding that the unexpected is to be expected

Photo shows the start of the BCT Gdynia Marathon to be held in Poland.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

When Layers Means Tough

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

When crew members of your escort boat wear jackets and hats and several layers of clothing, you know you are into for a long, tough swim. When umbrellas are used instead of sunscreen, you know it is going to be tough.



Photos from the 60th Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean in Quebec, Canada this weekend.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

When And What Swimmers Know Best

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Competitive swimmers know. They know extraordinarily well. They truly have a feel for the water.

Certainly much more so than any other land-based officials can ever appreciate.

Competitive swimmers – both pool and open water – can feel extremely subtle dynamics in any body of water.

Ask a competitive swimmer in a pool workout to swim 10 seconds behind their teammate, then ask the same swimmer to swim 7 seconds, 5 seconds, 3 seconds and then 1 second behind that same teammate. Each time the trailing swimmer will intrinsically feel and understand the changes in the dynamics of the amount of draft they benefit with those simple changes.

Similarly, when the water temperature drops by half of a degree, or even a quarter of a degree, competitive swimmers know exactly how and what the changes in water temperature are. Put one butterflyer in the lane next to a group of freestylers and the swimmers all know how the water is disturbed.

The tactile feel, the changes in the surface skin temperature, the minuscule differences of water flow among different scenarios are all well-known and fundamentally understood by competitive swimmers.

However, these very small changes are not only invisible to the naked eye, but the changes also completely unknown by land-based officials, referees, administrators and pool makers.

Similarly to differences in a smile, a handshake, the taste of a meal, or the color of the sunset, the human body and senses can pick up extraordinarily subtle differences between one situation and another. For competitive swimmers, their bodies and senses are completely in tune with the temperatures, flows and dynamics of any body of water where they swim - no matter if the competition is held in a pool or open body of water. These differences are hard to accurately explain in words, but they are easy to sense by physiological means.

Swimmers often tell their coaches of minute changes in the water temperature and conditions: “Coach, the water is cold.” “Coach, I can swim faster swimming closer to the boat.” “Coach, I can feel the current over here.” “Coach, the water is so much colder a meter below the water when I eggbeater.” But coaches typically respond simple by statements like “Get in the water.” “Keep swimming.” “Don’t complain." Those responses are immediately verbalized without the coach or other land-based official truly understanding the subtle differences that are easily picked up by those in the water.

So the controversy at the 2013 FINA World Championships in Barcelona, Spain is easily understood. On one hand, swimmers quickly, easily and profoundly picked up on the changes of water flows and dynamics between the different lanes in the Myrtha Pool that was built specifically for these world swimming championships.

While rumors swirled around the pool deck among swimmers, the coaches, administrators, pool builders could not possibly understand what the swimmers’ senses. Just as a fighter pilot understands certain nuances of supersonic flight, just as a financier understands the global trends that may affect currency exchanges, just as a painter can understand how a mixture of hues will affect a painting, the swimmers immediately understand the essence of what was happening in the water.

Swimming World Magazine and the Wall Street Journal, as well as publications from France to Australia, have reported that all lanes at the Myrtha Pool were not built equally. Joel Stager, Chris Brammer, and Andrew Cornett carefully researched and compared a variety of data and concluded that "...the evidence...suggests that there was a lane bias during the 2013 FINA World Championships and the bias had an effect on swim performances. This we show to be true within a swimmer's race as well as when races for a given swimmer were compared against each other."

Their analyses is presented here.

The authors were clear to not pass judgment on the physical properties of the pool. FINA representative Viktoria Dijakovic noted that there was no confirmation of the presence of a current in the world championship pool.

But swimmers know. They know extraordinarily well. More so than any other land-based officials can ever appreciate.

Dijakovic said, "By definition, pools don't have a current."

But swimmers know and feel. There is no falsehood in what the body of a competitive swimmer feels when there are dynamic forces at play in the water. Pool and open water swimmers have known this for generations.

So despite subsequent tests by Myrtha and FINA that showed no discernible current, the controversy continues to be discussed.

According to the Wall Street Journal, "Myrtha is devising a sophisticated means to detect water currents in their pools and will test it at the European Championships. FINA will use it before all championships and consider requiring the measurement of water movement before competitions."

Devices and sophisticated measures may be able to discern precisely what swimmers know well and have an intrinsic sense to understand when rules or venues are working to their advantage - or not.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Swimming Streamlined And Balanced In Rough Water

Courtesy of Katie Benoit, swimming in the North Channel, California.

Despite the rolling seas and lateral currents, Oceans Seven challenger Katie Benoit can swim streamlined and balance in rough water. Her style is a classic rough water stroke.

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference

Learn more...
Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER FOR THE CONFERENCE

The Global Open Water Swimming Conference is a conference on the sport of open water swimming, marathon swimming and swimming during triathlons and multi-sport endurance events.

The conference which has been attended by enthusiasts and luminaries from 6 continents, is devoted to providing information about the latest trends, race tactics, training techniques, equipment, psychological preparation, race organization and safety practices used in the sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons.

The conference's mission is to provide opportunities to listen and meet many of the world's most foremost experts in open water swimming, and to meet and discuss the sport among swimmers, coaches, administrators, event organizers, sponsors, vendors, officials, escort pilots, and volunteers from kayakers to safety personnel.

Dozens of presentations at the 2014 Conference at the Mount Stuart House cover numerous aspects of the vast and growing world of open water swimming where attendees can learn and share the latest trends, race tactics, training modalities, swimming techniques, equipment, race organization, logistics, operations, and safety practices for open water swimming as a solo swimmer, competitive athlete, fitness swimmer, masters swimmer, triathlete, multi-sport athlete, administrator, race promoter, sponsor or referee.

The conference was first held in Long Beach, California as part of the 2010 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships. It has since been held on the Queen Mary in California, at Columbia University and the United Nations in New York City, and in Cork, Ireland. This year in September, it comes to another iconic location, the Mount Stuart House on the Isle of Bute in Scotland.

"The Global Open Water Swimming Conference was started due to the desire and need for athletes, coaches, referees, administrators, race directors, promoters and sponsors from around the world to share, collect and learn information about the growing sports of open water swimming, marathon swimming and triathlons," said founder Steven Munatones. "Other swimming conferences usually offering nothing on open water swimming or perhaps a speech or two, but we thought open water swimming deserves its own global conference. It is great that the community shares its information via the online social network, but there is nothing like meeting other open water swimming enthusiasts face-to-face and talking about the sport from morning to night."

Speakers at the conference include English Channel swimmers, ice swimmers, record holders, renowned coaches, world champions, professional marathon swimmers, renowned race directors, officials and administrators from the Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

"Because the audience is passionate and educated about the sport and its finest practitioners, the Global Open Water Swimming Conference is also the location of the induction ceremonies for the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame and the annual WOWSA Awards that recognize the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, the World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, and the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Special Lifetime Achievement Awards are also occasionally presented to individuals who have made significant contributions to the sport over their career."

The 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference Programme

Wednesday, September 17th
Leave Glasgow to commence 2-day tour of Scotland [closest international airport is Glasgow]

Thursday, September 18th
Stay Mainland, North of Scotland

Friday, September 19th
14:00 - Swim Loch Lomond
17:00 - Head to Isle of Bute
19:30 - Scottish Banquet
21:30 - Dinner Dance

Saturday, September 20th
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
12:20 - Lunch and WOWSA Awards
13:40 – Speeches
15:40 - Round Table
19:00 - International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Dinner & Induction Ceremony

Sunday, September 21st
09:00 - Registration & Coffee
10:00 - Speeches
14:30 - Swim in St Ninian's Bay on the Isle of Bute

The luminaries of the open water swimming world who will be honored in Scotland will include:

* Sandra Bucha (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer and International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Jon Erikson (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Claudio Plit (Argentina), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Judith van Berkel-de Njis (Netherlands), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* David Yudovin (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Mercedes Gleitze (Great Britain), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* George Young (Canada), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Swimmer
* Dale Petranech (U.S.A.), International Swimming Hall of Fame Honor Open Water Contributor
* Melissa Cunningham (Australia), 2013 Irving Davids-Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award winner
* Vojislav Mijić (Serbia), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* James Anderson (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Dr. Jane Katz (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Administrator
* Indonesian Swimming Federation, , International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Organisation
* Elizabeth Fry (U.S.A.), International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Honour Swimmer
* Pádraig Mallon (Ireland), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year
* Olga Kozydub (Russia), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year
* Bering Strait Swim (international team), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year
* International Ice Swimming Association (Ram Barkai, founder, South Africa), the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year

For additional articles on the 2014 Global Open Water Swimming Conference, visit:

* Olga Kozydub To Be Honored In Scotland
* Pádraig Mallon To Be Honored In Mount Stuart Castle
* Mount Stuart House, Splendid Setting For Swimming
* Colleen Blair To Kick-off Global Open Water Swimming Conference
* The Man Who Swims Better Than He Walks
* Joining In The Sea Goddess At The Hall Of Fame
* Mercedes Gleitze To Be Honored In Scotland
* The Incredible Career Of Merceded Gleitze
* Jon Erikson To Be Honoured In Florida
* The Incredible Career Of Mercedes Gleitze
* St Ninian's Bay To Host International Swim Conference

Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association

Swim Across the English Channel...

OWSM-CM

Who else is looking for a qualified open water swimming coach to help them swim across the English Channel?

Chloë McCardel is a 6-time English Channel Swimmer who inspires and instructs. Access featured content by Chloë in this month's issue of the Open Water Swimming Magazine. Published monthly by WOWSA, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a digital, interactive publication made available exclusively to WOWSA members. See what you've been missing! Become a WOWSA member today!

Open Water Swimming Magazine


Open Water Swimming Magazine

The Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.

WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...
LEARN MORE

The Other Shore


The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.
LEARN MORE...

2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac



An Almanac for Open Water Swimming

An almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.

This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.

But the farmers almanac was just one example among many.
There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.

In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...

Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:
https://www.worldopenwaterswimmingassociation.com/preview-open-water-swimming-almanac


The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.

SponsorMySwim.com

Open Water Swimming Event Sanctioning

World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation

Open Water Race Calendar

Coaches Education Program