As part of the Paul Sadler Swimland Journey, we run an Open Water Experience for swimmers who have completed their Swordy 1km Swim. We are SUPER passionate about helping our swimmers transition from the contained pool environment into the open water – where conditions vary and swimmers need to read the environment in a different way.
The transition from swimming pool to the open water is significant, with the Royal Life Saving Association estimating that the distance you can cover in the pool equating to just 10% in an open surf beach. Therefore for a young swimmer who has achieved their 1km medal, they can swim an equivalent of just 100 meters in an open surf beach.
These open water swims are vitally important to our program because we understand that in enabling stronger, safer swimmers we need to support them through a range of activities and situations. With open water presenting different conditions like colder water, currents, seaweed, salty water, water not as clear, waves, plus the potential for quite a lot of surface movement if windy, the environment can throw even the most capable swimmer. We pride ourselves on being the Survival Specialists and therefore we build our programs around the range of skills a swimmer needs to be safer, including swimming in the open water.
We first started these swims in 2013 and currently run them yearly as well as actively participating and supporting the Great Australia Day Swim in January. Over the years we have had thousands of children participate and achieve their open water swim certificate.
With drowning still the leading cause of accidental death of children aged under 5 years,* plus the fact that more people drown in rivers, lakes and dams than anywhere else, teaching children skills to swim safer in a range of environments is incredibly important. Particularly when, according to the American Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, participation in formal swimming lessons was associated with an 88% reduction in the risk of drowning.
Open water swims allow kids the opportunity to convert their swimming skills learnt in a pool and gives them the experience in open water, which helps them be more confident in a range of conditions.
This Summer, Paul Sadler Swimland will once again host Open Water Swims and we are proud to have over 400 children participating – our biggest number in a single year yet!
Our upcoming Open Water Swims include;
• Brighton Baths: Saturday 4 March & Sunday 5 March
• Crusoe Reservoir, Bendigo: Saturday 18 March