The rise of the triathlon has increased the level of interest in open water swimming. Swimming on a lake, in the ocean, or any other area of open water is a different experience from swimming in a pool. The COVID-19 pandemic has closed swimming pools worldwide, meaning this is the perfect time to try open water swimming.
Find a Swimming Group
Swimming in open water is far more dangerous than jumping in a public pool. Public swimming pools generally employ lifeguards who will monitor the water for safety. Heading into the open water provides several safety issues, including the dangers of getting into difficulties. An open water swimming group will give you peace of mind over your safety, with members of your group watching your back and spotters watching from the shore.
Buy a Wetsuit
The temperature of a swimming pool can be controlled, but the open water changes the way your body reacts to the cold. A wetsuit serves several functions, including protecting your body from the most frigid water temperatures. Two wetsuit styles are available, with long sleeve wetsuits providing added buoyancy during an open water swim.
Complete a Warmup
Before you get in the water for the main body of your swim, you should complete a 10 – 15 minute warmup. Whether you are swimming in a competitive race or for pleasure, you will need to get comfortable in the water. The first step is to wade into the water to allow your body to become comfortable with the lower temperature. Once you begin to feel comfortable, dip your body underwater and ensure you are ready for the lack of visibility. Preparing your body is the best way of staying safe once you start your swim.
Choose the Right Stroke for you
The front crawl is the chosen stroke of experienced open water swimmers because it saves energy. Open water swimming is an individual hobby and needs to be completed as so, with the stroke you are most comfortable with being your chosen stroke.
Embrace the Fear
Every open after swimmer will feel scared at some point. Swimming so far from the shore and its safety gives you a sense of unpredictability. Breaking up your swim into a certain number of strokes or between specific buoys will limit the chances of fear ruining your swim.