Open Water & Pool Coaching Videos

How to Train for an Open Water Swimming Event

Conquering an open water swim event is a fantastic challenge! Here's a breakdown of how to train effectively.

Planning and Base Building:

Pick your Event

Set a goal by choosing a specific event. This will help structure your training program. Consider the distance and factor in how much time you realistically need to prepare.

Build Endurance

Open water swims demand strong endurance. Aim for 3-4 swims a week, with longer sessions on weekends. Consistency is key!

Open Water Skills


Get used to the environment! Train in open water whenever possible, replicating the conditions of your race (wetsuit, water temperature).


Master the art of sighting - the act of lifting your head to stay oriented. Practice regularly in open water, gradually increasing the time between breaths you look ahead.

Workout Types

Straight Line Navigation

Drills to improve efficiency and straight swimming. Imagine train tracks underwater and focus on smooth head and body position.


Drills like the polo drill build strength and power, which translates to better stroke mechanics and the ability to lift your head for sighting.

Speed Work

Incorporate faster paced swims to increase speed and stroke rate. This will help you maintain a strong pace during the race.

Additional Tips

Warm-up and Cool-down

Always include a warm-up and cool-down in your pool and open water sessions.

Vary Conditions

Train in different weather conditions (choppy water) to improve adaptability.

Safety First

Open water swimming can have risks. Train with a buddy, especially in unfamiliar areas, and be aware of currents and water conditions.

For more information on what happens on the day of the event, please read our Top Tips For Swimming in Your First Event

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