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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

When Big Is Huge: Sun-Moon Lake Swimming Carnival

The Sun-Moon Lake Ten-Thousand Swimming Carnival is simply massive. Like its counterpart open water swimming events in South Africa (aQuellé Midmar Mile), Great Britain (British Gas Great North Swim), Sweden (Vansbrosimningen), Turkey (Boğazıçi Kitalararasi Yarislari), and Australia (Rottnest Channel Swim), the cross-lake event is a giant celebration of open water swimming.

Held on September 8th for its 31st annual event, the Sun-Moon Lake Ten-Thousand Swimming Carnival is a in central Taiwan is a non-competitive, non-timed 3 km point-to-point lake swim that certainly achieves its goals with its 25,000 entrants: swim with friends and promote recreation, develop grassroots physical education, popularize the beauty of Sun-Moon Lake, and increase tourism.

But it is still shocking how large this event has become under the leadership of Morrie Chiang, a Professor at the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology. Everything about the event is super-sized. From the number of participating government agencies to the number of floating pontoons that cut a course between the shores, it is a mightily massive event.

Under the auspices of the Puli Four-season Swimming Association, there is a large number of agencies that are called in to support and work this event, there are the Ministry of Education, Ministry of National Defense, Army Headquarters, Tourism Bureau, Sun Moon Lake National Area Administration, Tourism Bureau, Nantou County Council, Chinese Taipei Olympic Committee, Nantou County Government, Master Swimming Taiwan, Red Cross Society of the Republic of China (Taiwan), New Taipei City Rescue and Ambulance Volunteer Association, Phoenix Ambulance Volunteer Team, New Taipei City Fire Department, The Army 10th Corp Command, Military Police 203 Command, Marine Corps Command, Air Force 455th Wing, The 5th (Central) Regional Support Command, Taichung Veterans General Hospital, Nantou County Government Education Bureau, Nantou County Government Transportation and Tourism Bureau, Nantou County Police Bureau, Nantou County Government Fire Department, Nantou County Government Public Health Bureau, Nantou County Government Environmental Protection Bureau Cultural Affairs Bureau of Nantou County, Nantou County Government Agricultural Bureau, Nantou County Police Station Transportation Team, Nantou County Government Department of Social Affairs Nantou County Government Information Bureau, Nantou County Investigation Bureau, Ministry of Justice Puli Township Office, Caotun Township Office, Yuchih Township Office, Nantou County Police Bureau Jiji Precinct, Sun-Moon Lake Local Police Station, De-Hwa Local Police Station, Sun-Moon Lake Fire Department Branch, Riyue Village Office, Shuishe Village Office, Sun-Moon Lake Image and Business Development Association, Health Center of Yuchih Township of Nantou County, New Taipei City Nantou County Association, Chinese Taipei Swimming Association Central Branch Changhua County Surf Life Saving Association, Diving Rescue Association R.O.C., Puli Christian Hospital, Taichung Veterans General Hospital Puli Branch, Taiwan Blood Service Foundation Puli Blood Station Nantou County Ferry and Yacht United Association, Nantou County Sun Moon Lake Fishery Association, Ming-Tan Junior High School, Ming-Tan Elementary School, De-Hwa Elementary School, Sun-Moon Lake Wenwu Temple, Vitalon Welfare Foundation, and Mizuno (Taiwan) Corporation, Shin Kong Life Insurance Company, Decathlon Taiwan Company, Eradiate Enterprise Company, 18°C Chocolate, Formosan Original Culture Village.

And similar to other mass participation event, the visual-impaired and physically disabled athletes start first. Then groups (or heats) of other swimmers follow so there is a smooth flow of over 26,000 people in the water. But seeing the thousands of swimmers with bright orange swim caps bobbing up and down, many doing breaststroke and all with the swim buoys tied on, cross the largest lake located in central Taiwan is impressive. Especially since the heats are set off at 7:30 am and the entire lake is cleared at 1:00 pm.

Swimmers between the ages of 8 to 70 years old who are capable of swimming 3 km can participate. Individuals who are older than 65 years must be accompanied by a teammate with lifesaving abilities. People with any medical history of heart disease, high blood pressure, asthma, epilepsy, cellulitis, or whoever is taking illicit drugs cannot participate in the event.

The relatively inexpensive fee provides entrants with a t-shirt, swim cap, lunch with drink, and group incident insurance. And there are several other goodies for select groups of people. For example, the first 10,000 applicants receive memorial towels as do teams with more than 30 swimmers and the first 100 physically disabled swimmers. Additionally, couples whose total age equal 120, 130, or 140 years receive a special certificate.

Safety protocols and procedures are institutionalized throughout the registration process and on event day. Everyone must wear a swim buoy and an official swim cap. Entrants are encouraged to train and test themselves in cold-water pools prior to the Carnival and everyone is reminded that the event is not a competition; rather, the swimmers are mandated to swim easily and together while keeping an eye out for everyone in their individual groups.

For more information, visit here.

Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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The Staff of the 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

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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.

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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.

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There are, of course, many different kinds of almanacs.

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Preview the Open Water Swimming Almanac:
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The trends are very clear.
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