Here are GTN's top 9 open water swim skills for beginners. Open water swimming can be a bit daunting for beginner triathletes, however, with these skills, you can learn to love the freedom of swimming outdoors!
Mark and Heather are at the best Swim Centre in Mallorca and bring your their top tips for beginning your open water journey.
Equipment: Buy a wetsuit that fits well to prevent fighting it or carrying lots of water in it. Make sure you can be seen with a bright coloured hat and ensure you have a good set of googles to be able to see the course and any dangers ahead.
Safety: This is paramount in open water swimming. Swim at a proper venue with water testing and make sure to swim with someone else or have a spotter on the side. Also, familiarise yourself with the course entry and exit point before jumping in.
Warm up: It can be difficult to warm up when the water is cold so limbering up before can make a big difference. A few press ups and arm swings will suffice.
Climatisation: Sit on the edge with your feet in the water and splash some on your face to get your body used to the cold water.- Lie on your back: Enter the water slowly to allow your body to get used to the temperature change. A good way to relax is lay on your back and take several deep breaths to control your breathing.
Rescue: Should you find yourself in difficulty in deep water then roll on to your back and wave to catch someone's attention.
Confidence: Build confidence by taking it one step at a time. Step one is to fully submerge whilst blowing bubbles to ensure you can control your breathing.
Start slowly: Don't rush in to a long swim, especially if you are new to the open water. Swim to a buoy a short distance away, then take a break before continuing.- Finally.... ENJOY IT!
Tips taken from Global Triathlon Network.