The Benefits of Frequent Open Water Swimming


Posted by Coach John Murray

We are completing our second season of weekly open water swims with our local triathlon club here in the Pensacola area - TriGulfCoast. The swim is graciously sponsored by a local law firm, Zarzaur Law. 

Each Thursday morning from April to October the triathletes gather with the purpose of improving their swim. We have averaged approximately twenty swimmers each week. Some athletes were only able to join us for one or two of the swims and a few of the athletes had perfect attendance for the whole season!

The number one goal for many was open water familiarization. Not all of our triathlon friends list open water swimming as their favorite thing to do. So through regular attendance, swimming amongst their friends, and experiencing a variety of weather and water conditions everyone has developed more confidence in the water.

Once a swimmer is more comfortable in the water they can begin to work more effectively on the skills that will benefit them on race day:


Sighting - swimming straight in a race is an important attribute. Learning an efficient sighting technique that is not disruptive to your swimming tempo will help you have a faster swim.

Drafting - for our larger groups there are usually plenty of opportunities to practice drafting. Our goal was to help triathletes find the sweet spot of the decreased swimming workload while learning the technique of staying on the feet of the swimmer in front of you.

Entries & Exits - Many of our swims in Florida start at the water’s edge and the need for executing a smart and tactical start and finish is crucial. For a few of our Thursday mornings we changed our usual swim routine to practice those important entries and exits.


Athletes that swim regularly in open water but also possess the skills to have a rehearsed plan for their triathlon swim will enjoy a confident swim and a better overall triathlon performance and experience.

If there is a local open water swim group near you, join in!

~ Coach John Murray

Share |

Keep up with the Blog with RSS.



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.