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2016 WOWSA AWARDS
Vote in All Four CategoriesThe World Open Water Swimming Association is pleased to present the 2016 WOWSA Award Nominees.
The nominees are presented in the following four categories:
Tuesday, March 15, 2016
Abhejali Bernadova Completes A Swim From Robben Island
Abhejali Bernadova became the first Czech citizen to complete a swim from Robben Island to Bloubergstrand, Cape Town, South Africa.
The slender 39-year-old from the Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team in Zlin, Czech Republic battled 9-11°C water to add another crossing to her growing number of open water swims with her 2 hour 35 minute 7.5 km swim.
Starting at 8:54 am on a sunny morning, Bernadova swam through ocean swells to climb the rocks at Robben Island a UNESCO World Heritage site where Nobel Peace Laureate Nelson Mandela had been held prisoner for 18 years. In the calm, cold waters, she faced jellyfish and a dense forest of kelp. She said, "The water felt really very cold. Luckily my helpers – Penny, Stacey and Chris - did not tell me any numbers. I expected the water to be about 13°C, since the wind had been pushing the cold water up from the southeast.
On the websites, the water temperature was reported as 16°C, but all of us were worried that I would become hypothermic. I had only trained in 16°C water, plus two 30-minute swims in Cape Town during the two days before the start. My hands and feet and even my mouth were getting numb/ After about an hour, I was not sure at all whether I would be able to hold out."
The temperature increased to 11°C, but it still did not help. "I could not feel any difference. I just focused hard, prayed, and thought of Nelson Mandela. If he could endure so much, I could handle this too.
My helpers checked on me by asking me in regular intervals to repeat my phone number. If I messed it up, it would mean I was hypothermic. So I kept repeating my swimming mantras and my phone number. We also had to change my feeds from 20-minute to 15-minute intervals to keep me going.
For the last 800 meters, my teammate Stacy from New Zealand swam with me. Plus, there were warm clothes and drinks ready for me on the beach. My body was shaking which was a good sign that I was not hypothermic. Luckily, I did not have to swim back to the boat. At the finish, I noticed blood on my foot and I realised I must have cut the foot on the rocks at the start."
"Again, ignorance was bliss – had I known about it, I would have not been able to swim so peacefully. But apart from the jellyfish and a seal that my helpers saw, no other marine life had showed up."
She recalled her motivations to swim in Cape Town. "My inspiration to swim Robben Island was mainly to honour Nelson Mandela's life and character. President Mandela for me was always a great inspiration. His dream of a free and peaceful society is alive and needs to be commemorated and still fully manifested. His ability to forgive his captors and cooperate with all to build a just and equal society is incredible. Our world needs more people like Nelson Mandela. I am happy that with today's successful crossing I can pay tribute to him."
Copyright © 2016 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.