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Friday, August 2, 2013

The Mission Of Mohamed Marouf

Mohamed Marouf's passion knows no bounds. He works tirelessly to promote and organize the sport of open water swimming in his adopted Canada and in his native Egypt. But whether it is a domestic coaching conference or an international marathon swimming event, Marouf caters to the goals and desires of long distance swimmers.

"Distance swimmers work so hard in practice, but the opportunities to demonstrate their skills and stamina are relatively few," he explains.

"I try to introduce the beauty of open water swimming and new long distance events in the pool to these swimmers and their coaches." Marouf is a man on a mission. As he has been all his life.

The joy he experienced as a professional marathon swimmer was clear. Smiling before his difficult races and smiling afterwards, Marouf was a popular competitor on the professional circuit. He was intense in the water, but friendly out of the water.

He wanted to win as much as the next swimmer, but he always has a kind word for those who finished ahead of him or did not finish at all. After his competitive career wound down, he further established deep roots in the sport while taking on the role of a coach and promoter of long distance and open water swimming events, clinics, and camps in Quèbec, Canada.

The husky Egyptian found his role in life as a marathon swimmer competing on the World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation circuit in the 1990's. For years, he traveled around the world representing Egypt and completing marathon swims against the world’s best. The multi-lingual swimmer with stereotypical broad shoulders tapering down to a narrow waist was only too happy to continue the proud tradition of marathon swimming that started in the 1950’s by his Egyptian predecessors.

In Quèbec, he started 5 km and 10 km long distance swimming competitions in the pool during the cold winter and spring months when open water swimming is not possible due to the cold and snow. “We have a disadvantage compared to other swimmers in areas where it is not so cold. Our lakes are frozen over and our open water swimmers cannot get prepared for the open water like swimmers in warmer climates. So we established these long distance pool events. I did not care if we started out small, but I felt that we needed to start. Then after we started, the number of swimmers really started to grow."

Lower photo shows Mohamed Marouf with Olympic bronze medalist Richard Weinberger.

Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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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.

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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.

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