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What you need to know about Swimming

Swimming races and open water swimming events generally tend to be between 1—10km in length, however, more challenging swims can be up to 80km long. Swims over 10km are classed as Marathon Swims, These events take place in lakes or in the sea, often with a great atmosphere and a festival vibe. If you’re just starting out, get some practice in a pool first, temperature and choppiness are factors to consider before diving in.

From a quick dip in Dorney lake to mastering the Windermere One Way, we’ve collected some of the best open water swimming races below. If you’re feeling adventurous and want to throw in some other disciplines, you can check out our pages on Swimrun & Triathlon too.

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Join us for this round trip Alcatraz swim! This swim is a great challenge for fast swimmers that requires a strategic race plan to swim the 3.6 mile course with tides and fast currents around Alcatraz. This is also an excellent event to help prepare for longer open water endurance competitions. Some of the best open water swimmers at the national level compete in Swim Around The Rock.

This swim starts off the beach of St. Francis, and you'll swim along a fast and exciting current. But as you make your way clockwise around Alcatraz, that's where the real challenge begins - you'll have to navigate not only around the prison, but through the currents as you make your way to Aquatic Park. A challenge you won't forget for sure!

This event is for experienced open water swimmers only. This swim will not only require swimming strength and open water experience, but expert ability in navigating a winning course with complex currents. This is easily our most difficult bay race, even more so than Bridge to Bridge 10K. If you need advice, support, and coaching for this swim, Water World Swim can help.

Swim Around The Rock

San Francisco, California, US
1 race
$399$435

The Golden Gate Frogman Swim (sister swim to the Tampa Bay Frogman Swim) is a two mile open water swim and fundraiser that benefits the Navy SEAL Foundation (NSF), a 501(c)(3) with a coveted four star rating by Charity Navigator. The Navy SEAL Foundation supports wounded and fallen Navy SEALs, NSW Support Personnel and their families.

The Golden Gate Frogman Swim

Mill Valley, California, US
1 race
$250

This 3K (approx. 1.15 mi) race begins at the ocean side of the south tower of the Golden Gate Bridge near Ft. Point Beach and goes under the Golden Gate Bridge past the north tower and finishes at Finger Point Rock. This is a rare opportunity to swim one of the most thrilling open water, world class competitions ever near a legendary historical landmark with unique currents from the Pacific Ocean and the San Francisco Bay, and over the bay's deepest point at over 340 feet!

This swim is not for novices. This event is for experienced open-water swimmers only. You should be able to swim one mile comfortably in a pool in under 40 minutes. If you need advice, support, and coaching for this swim, Water World Swim can help.

Golden Gate Bridge

San Francisco, California, US
1 race
$239$275

Join us Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, for the 36th annual Santa Cruz Triathlon.

The Santa Cruz Triathlon, a scenic Olympic-distance and Sprint race, will be Sept. 23, 2018. With ocean views and a great vibe, the race is a ton of fun. Its also a fundraiser for local youth sports in Santa Cruz County. Formerly the Sentinel Triathlon, the event has been held in Santa Cruz annually for the past three decades.

Santa Cruz Triathlon

Santa Cruz, California, US

1.27-mile open water swims from a point abeam Alcatraz Island back to the South End Rowing Clubhouse at the foot of the Hyde St. Pier in San Francisco.

Alcatraz Invitational

San Francisco, California, US

On June 11, 1962, Frank Morris and John and Clarence Anglin chipped through their cement cell walls, squeezed through a ventilation shaft to get to the roof, climbed down a drain pipe, scaled a 15-foot fence, and entered the frigid waters of San Francisco Bay. They disappeared into the night, wearing only the meager life preservers they made from stolen rain coats, and were never found, seen, or heard from again.

39 years later, on June 11, 2001, Pedro Ordenes and Gary Emich became the first swimmers to successfully Escape from Alcatraz 100 times! Since then, becoming a member of the elite Alcatraz 100 Club has become THE ambition for many open water swimmers. On September 30th, youll have the chance to reach your own goals and share the waters with the experts of the Bay, the Centurions.

You don't need to be a Centurion yourself - in fact, this is a great race opportunity for first-time Alcatraz swimmers with adequate training! This swim is not for novices. This event is for experienced open-water swimmers only. You should be able to swim one mile comfortably in a pool in under 40 minutes. If you need advice, support, and coaching for this swim, Water World Swim can help.

Alcatraz Swim with the Centurions

San Francisco, California, US
1 race
$195$225

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