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2016 WOWSA Man of the Year – Nejib Belhedi
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Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Tuomas Kaario Heading Across The Gulf Of Finland
Tuomas Kaario is a Finnish open water swimmer who has completed a crossing of the English Channel in 2008 and will make an attempt of a 60 km crossing of the Gulf of Finland in August 2014.
His motivation and mindset are fascinating to learn.
The 42-year-old swimmer will start the 37.2-mile sea swim in Estonia, Rohuneeme close to Tallin with plans to finish in Porkkalanniemi, which is Kirkkonummi, near Helsinki. As he waits for the perfect conditions, he discusses his solo marathon swim:
"I have spent all the summers of my childhood by the sea. I learned to swim, fish and sail when I was still just a small child. The scent of the sea is something that is very dear to me. The catch in our nets often included large perches or pike-perches. The jellyfish we threw on the rock to dry up were the size of plates.
Swimming and moving in water have always been an integral part of who I am. What makes the situation slightly strange is that a part of me is still the same little boy who is afraid of water and afraid of the dark. This is why – or despite this – the sea holds its fascination.
In 2002 I began to practice open water swimming a bit more seriously. Having an island of one’s own was luxury. When I swam around the island I was never too far from the sauna and a good meal. I had soaked myself for hundreds of hours in the Baltic Sea to prepare for the swim across the English Channel.
It is intriguing how you only need to swim a short distance towards the horizon to be able to relax. Everything else fades to the background. This is an emotion I could not reach on a lake. And I do not mean only through swimming but from moving on the sea with any type of equipment. The Gulf of Finland has been extremely important to me also in terms of well-being. Without the sea and the time spent chopping wood at the cottage I do not know if I would still be ‘sane’.
In the summer of 2014 I intend to be the first person to swim across the Gulf of Finland. The coldness of the water, not the distance, is the greatest challenge, which makes it interesting. People tend to think that distance is the main consideration in open water swimming. But the Gulf of Finland is also not very warm. Surface waters are rarely above 20 °C. The journey will be everything but easy. Nevertheless, the mere thought of that 25 to 30 hour swim, the fact that it is possible, makes my palms sweat and my thoughts go awry."
For more information and a first-person account of his dreams, visit here.
Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association
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Open Water Swimming Magazine
Open Water Swimming MagazineThe 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...
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.
2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac
An Almanac for Open Water SwimmingAn 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:
The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.