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Saturday, December 15, 2018

Tim Johnson's History of Open-Water Marathon Swimming

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Dr. Tim Johnson, a captain and professional engineer, wrote a book entitled History of Open-Water Marathon Swimming that was based on his background in navigation for swimmers in the around Manhattan Island Marathon Swim and development of computer analysis for that swim course.

After a study of historical swims, the application for this knowledge around the world became apparent and he undertook a writing to communicate these findings for select swims. He described numerous swims and included them in what was to become a book about the history of swimming.

The book is over 500 pages with 700+ references and up to 500 different swims mentioned.

The history is complete through 2004, but due to the last decade's explosion of open swimming events created to accommodate the worldwide interest.

The book does not cover all swims, most professional swims, swims shorter than 10K (except in the historical period), nor does it list all the swims for the English Channel, except for one swim of historical note that puts Diana Nyad’s historic technical swim from Cuba into context.

Tidal principles and current flows discussed apply to all start times for swims in open water and to the extent that a swimmer can incorporated a favorable flow in their swim will result in a faster transit time.

The book is available on Amazon.com.

Dr. Johnson has also authored Finding A Job In Tough Times, Performance Sailing on a J29, Stud of the Hudson: A Swim in Twenty Stages, and Introductory Digital Logic Labs: A Graphical Approach to Logic Design.

Dr. Johnson explained the physics of open water swimming at the 2010 Global Open Water Swimming Conference in New York City:

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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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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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