5 Tips For Swimming In Open Water
January 2, 2024

With the approach of warmer days and a gradual increase of water temperature, trying out open water swimming may be among your plans to unwind. Open water swimming is more than just swimming in a different body of water; it offers unique benefits and requires special techniques to guarantee a hitch-free session.

The benefits of open water swimming are boosting the immune system and bettering mental health. Perhaps its greatest benefit is an unparalleled enjoyment and appreciation of the outdoors that the walled confines of swimming pools lack.

The major difference between outdoor and indoor swimming is the lack of walls and the absence of things to guide your swimming, like lane lines in the former. These tips below will aid you in your open water swimming, and soon enough, you’ll be diving deep.

  • Swimming techniques

To keep your momentum in open water, you have to slightly increase your stroke rate. Open water swimmers mostly use the freestyle stroke, and you should master it. However, knowing other strokes that use lesser energy than freestyle is also very important for times when you want to take a break. Strokes that use lesser energy include backstroke and breaststroke.

  • Treading water

You do this when you want to take a break in deep water that you can’t touch the bottom with your legs. You can practice water-treading in the deep end of the pool.

  • Practice breathing

We recommend you breathe to both sides in the open water swimming, called bilateral breathing. You practice bilateral breathing by exhaling air underwater with your mouth. You rotate your shoulder sideways and breathe in through your mouth, and you turn your head back with your shoulders underwater. Doing this is necessary to avoid swallowing a lot of water and breathe in the opposite direction of any wave.

  • Turning

Turning in open water occurs around a buoy, and when in competitions, this might happen more than once. To practice turning indoors, you should make sure that you do not touch both the walls and the bottom of the swimming pool when turning around. You can practice around water buoys in open water or around your swimming buddies when you’re considerably better at it.

  • Sighting

Sighting is an important skill you have to learn to make headway in open water swimming. Unlike in indoor pools where there are markers to guide your movement, you have to sight a landmark and swim towards it when swimming outdoors.

Before diving in the outdoors, try practicing this in the pool by swimming in as straight a line as possible. Another way to practice while indoors is by focusing on a spot in the wall on the opposite side and swimming towards it.

If you plan to go competitive in your outdoor swimming, you’ll inevitably bump into other athletes and veer in all directions. As such, it is very important to master swimming in a straight line.

While being very rewarding, open-water swimming does not have to be challenging. Put in a bit of effort to practice and perfect some techniques and methods, and you will become a swimming pro in no time.