This is the perfect guide for your new open water adventures. Or pass it on to any friends that you are looking to get hooked on the open water high!

You know how to swim, you put in the practice. Time to sign up for a race and put it all into practise. Open water swimming especially on race day, can be a bit nerve wrecking. However, with a little practice plus a few tips and tricks you can boost your confidence and shave minutes off your open water swim.


The Great Fjord Swim - Swimmer in Water

Put in the Practice

Nothing beats experience. It sounds straight forward, but the BEST thing you can do is a practice. The more practice you get swimming in open water, the more comfortable you will feel. Depending where you are living, it can be hard to get access open water regularly. Be creative with finding a body of water, from ocean to lake to river.

Get a Wetsuit

Wetsuit add two things to your experience – warmth and buoyancy – both can really help you while open water swimming. There are lots of guides out there on swimming wetsuits. It might seem like a big investment, but it will also get you swimming more. No excuses!

Get ready and warm

Don’t forget your warm-up. You might feel full of energy and excitement rearing to go, but don’t skip the warm up! If you can warm up in water do so, if not do some stretches a little running on the spot, will help as well!

Watch where you are going

It is much harder to stay on track in an open water swim. If you can have a look at the location before, so you get familiar with the landscape. In the water always pick a landmark/buoy to keep you on track. Sight regularly to ensure that you are still going in the right direction.

Here is a very useful guide from Outdoor Swimmer Magazine.

Start Slow

Give yourself time to find your own rhythm. It can be tempting to rush in and wanting to give it your all. But that might see you gasping for air after a few minutes in the water. Focus on yourself, start off slow and increase your speed throughout the race. Finish strong!

Be safe - Tow Floats

They are great for safety when training in open water and essential on race day. For most open water swimming events, they are mandatory for good reason. It is well worth investing in one and having that extra security in case you need it.

Ready to go? The 750m distance at the Great Fjord Swim is the perfect spot for newbies to hit the open water. Get dropped off with a fishing trawler in Co. Mayo and swim to shore in Co. Galway! All details on the Great Fjord Swim here.

The Great Fjord Swim - Happy Swimmers at the Finish Line

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