609 in 2015 and later

648 past in 2015 (updated 17-07-'15)

history

Open water swimming is a lesson in endurance, resiliency, and gratefulness

Betsy Medalla, the masters swim coach and the country’s foremost advocate of the sport, talks about training specifically for the great outdoors—and how being grateful can calm fears and nerves.

Betsy Medalla has a curious way of describing her path into open water swimming.

“I was thrown into it, actually,” she says.

While most people would balk at the idea of being “thrown into” a sport that has the words “open water” attached to it, Medalla flourished.

The World’s Most Difficult Swims

Since Captain Matthew Webb became the first person to swim the English Channel in 1875, marathon swimming has fascinated the public. Swimmers are constantly trying to break records and boundaries, and to find swims that have never been completed before. A marathon swim is classed as any open water swim over 10km, in which traditional channel swimming rules apply.

Chinese women's relay swim team 1st to cross English Channel

After relay swimming for nearly 20 hours and covering 72.85 kilometers, five Chinese women crossed the English Channel and finally landed on Calais, France, at 18:30 local time on July 3.

'If you need to find me, I’ll be where I’m swimming': The story of Mercedes Gleitze, the first British woman to swim the Channel

Doloranda Pember was 84 years old before she finally got to witness someone swimming the English Channel at close quarters. Last summer, she was on the support boat when Heather Clotworthy, an open water swimmer from Northern Ireland, attempted the marathon, only to be defeated by the tides within a couple of miles of the French coast. Sitting on the boat, watching a lone and lonely female battling the fearsome conditions, Doloranda at last understood what an achievement it is to cross the Channel under your own steam.

Diving into the past of the Dutch New Year’s Dive

So, have you done it yet, the New Year’s Dive? Although it has grown into a distinct Dutch tradition, the New Year’s Dive does not actually originate from the Netherlands.

What is the New Year’s Dive exactly?

It is quite simply what it says on the tin, a dive into a cold body of water to ring in the New Year. It rather literally gives you a fresh start. And it is really that easy, jumping into cold water. Perhaps its simplicity is what has made it so popular.

Bangladesh's most celebrated swimmer hangs up trunks at 67

After nearly half a century navigating Bangladesh's thousands of kilometres of rivers, the country's most celebrated swimmer has hung up his trunks - but not before one final, arduous paddle upstream.

Kshitindra Baisya, 67, plans to spend his retirement on dry land inspiring younger generations to embrace the water in a country criss-crossed by huge rivers but where few swim.

Fort Myers native Paul Asmuth dives into writing about his marathon swimming life

Paul Asmuth is a Fort Myers youth swimmer who became one of the top marathon swimmers in the world. He held the record for swimming the English Channel. He also was a seven-time marathon swimming champion. He has written a book about his faith and how it helped with his swimming.
Andrew West/The News-Press

Paul Asmuth had every reason in the world to end his open-water, marathon swimming career before it really started.

SHOUT FROM THE STANDS: MY FIRST MARATHON SWIM

This “Shouts from the Stands” submission comes from Elizabeth Fehr, a member of the Narragansett Ocean Swimming Enthusiasts. 

I moved to Rhode Island three years ago, and up until that point I had never heard of open water swimming. I can still remember the warm August evening when my friend and I were walking down the beach, our eyes on the ocean. Then suddenly I saw something black out in the water—way out. Curious I stared harder, and pointed out the strange figures that were moving around buoys nearly halfway out to sea. “What is that?” I asked her. “Are they dolphins?”

Gertrude Ederle: the first woman to swim the English Channel #History

In 1926, 19-year-old New Yorker Gertrude Ederle made history by becoming the first woman to swim the English Channel – and in a faster time than the five men who had already achieved the feat. Writing for History Extra, Gavin Mortimer shares the remarkable story of Ederle’s swim and how she inspired a generation of sporting women…

Legendary sea-swimmer Theodore Yach dies aged 60

South Africa’s most renowned open water sea swimmer‚ Theodore Yach‚ has died at the age of 60.

In 2016‚ Yach completed his 100th swim between Robben Island and the Cape Town shoreline‚ saying he was getting quicker thanks to dietary advice from Tim Noakes‚ a leading advocate of low-carbohydrate high-fat nutrition.

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