Four Reasons to Make Open Water Swimming a Part of your Triathlon Training

Apr
5

Posted by Coach John Murray

For many triathletes, open water swimming only happens on race day. This can lead to a less-than-optimal performance and may even cause doubt and anxiety as you prepare to start your race. We encourage athletes to make their best effort to swim in open water regularly. Plan it with either with a group or one of your training partners and work on the areas that will benefit not only your swim but the rest of your race. 

Here are four reasons why I believe you should consider open water swimming as a regular part of your training:

  1. Become comfortable in the open water- for some, the thought of being away from shore in twenty feet of water causes some element of anxiety. Although an athlete can swim 10 minutes or more non-stop in a pool, they become nervous and anxious in a lake, river or the ocean. Repeated exposure to open water swimming will give athletes a sense of confidence and allows them to be comfortable even when they can't see the bottom.
  2. Sighting and Navigating- we can teach this skill in the classroom setting and practice this in the pool, but the real growth in this skill takes place in the open water. Through repetition in several different types of conditions the skill of swimming straight will be mastered.
  3. Open water effort level- pacing yourself in the pool is a skill you should be working on regularly. However, without the smooth water and walls of the pool it can be a challenge to find that perfect pace. Some of our open water swimming can be simply familiarization but consider focusing on some pacing drills from time to time.
  4. Learning different stroke techniques for changing conditions- We may show up to a race next month and see choppy, white-capped water conditions. If the race director feels it's safe to swim, you will jump in confidently because you have practiced in the same conditions. Adjusting your stroke for those wavy, choppy conditions is developed through spending time in the rough water.

 

Rehearsing your race day swim will reap benefits for your confidence, race enjoyment and overall performance!

Remember to include safety as your number one priority when practicing in the open water. Swim with a group if possible. Never swim alone. Avoid busy boating or jet-skiing areas and always wear a brightly-colored cap.

 

(For those in the Pensacola Beach area, join us for the weekly Thursday Morning I Hate Open Water Swims presented by Zarzaur Law, beginning April 28 and going through October. See the full photo album on Facebook.) 

 

~ Coach John Murray

Share |

Keep up with the Blog with RSS.

 

Archive

Consistency and Variability: Two Key Ingredients for Successful Endurance Training

Posted by Coach David Bauerle on January 14, 2018

Testosterone and endurance exercise: the "exercise-hypogonadal male condition"

Posted by Coach Manuel Delgado Goana on January 14, 2018

Team MPI Celebrates 8th year of Excellence in Endurance Coaching and Coach Mentoring

Posted by admi on January 10, 2018

Training for your First Triathlon

Posted by Coach Liesl Begnaud on January 07, 2018

Mastering the Art of Choosing Our Reason "Why"

Posted by Coach Chris Palmquist on January 07, 2018

Triathlon is for Every BODY

Posted by Coach Adam Sczech on January 01, 2018

Watch Your AIM in 2018

Posted by Coach Mark Turner on January 01, 2018

Surviving the Holidays, One Bite at a Time

Posted by Coach April Corey on December 17, 2017

A “Heavy” Conversation

Posted by Coach Mark Sortino on December 10, 2017

The Revelations, The Risks, and the Rewards - Part 2

Posted by Coach Mandi Kowal on December 10, 2017

 

Full Blog Archive

Sign up for our Newsletter

Keep up with the latest tips, news, and events from Team MPI.