Do You Have Any Open Water Fears?

Yellow Lab + Life + Atlantic = Love.

My dog best friend has no open water fears. He’s never heard of sea monsters or sharks. His feet are either touching the bottom or not (he’ll find out which and adjust as needed). He lives in a world where ninja fish aren’t scary… they’re a challenge. Rip tides are merely a change in course. Goggles (like leashes) are an inconvenience & wetsuits will never confine him. Forget visibility, muddy water should be drunk first. He looks at open water the way a rain drop looks at the sky: FreedomI wish I was more like my dog best friend.

Do you have any open water fears? Are they rational or irrational? How have you overcome them? What would you tell someone who is afraid to try a triathlon because of the swim? Please leave your answer in the comment section below.

Categories: Open Water

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14 replies

  1. I love this, my Best Friend (Hutch) can’t get enough of the ocean! we have a place in Dewey DE. During the Summer my boy is up at sunrise and in the Ocean. Tires himself out and sleeps until he hears the lifeguards whistle at 5PM, then he’s ready to go again! I thought I loved the water until I saw Hutch in Paradise! Sorry, no water fears here – just sharing* Thanks

    • Darwin and Hutch would be quite the pair! I’m so glad I had my phone with me when we went to the beach so I could take some pictures – the look on his face is pure joy. Like you, I thought I loved the water until seeing him play in the waves. Going to the beach/ taking him swimming is one of my favorite things in the world. Can’t wait to go again!!! Is Hutch a lab too?

  2. As long as I don’t think about that opening sequence of “Jaws” right before the gun, I’m fine….lol….but I always swim in the middle of the “school” just in case. Seriously, I do not like to swim in the ocean alone…I just try not to let myself get “creeped out” before a race.

    • lol, that’s funny. I think it’s smart to have a buddy in the ocean with you whenever you can…preferably a slow friend who’d get eaten first… (just kidding). If nothing else, someone on land should know you’re swimming alone in case anything happens. I totally understand avoiding movies like Jaws or watching ‘Shark Week’ before a race.

  3. Being new to swimming and triathlons the swim was the biggest obstacle for me, especially open water. The thought of not being able to see the bottom in most cases, with the waves, and unknowns and being outside the comfort of a pool were all very intimidating. What really helped me the most was a wetsuit. Just knowing that if I got tired or couldn’t swim, the wetsuit helps me float and covers most of my skin from the unknowns that may be lurking in the water.

    • It is funny how not seeing the bottom can affect people! I used to tell my swimmers that if they can float in the pool they can float anywhere but it can still be scary! Good wetsuit points. The feeling of some unseen fish brushing against me is something I will never like or get used to!

  4. I love this! 🙂 Sadly, my bestie (a 16 pound shi tsu) is terrified of the water.

    I know so many people who are held back by open water fears!

    • Awe, well it isn’t for everybody (dogs included)! My dog lives to swim but he pulls a lot on walks. Everything is so exciting!!! What do you tell people when they open up about their water fears?

      • I encourage them to brave it with friends! I live at the ocean so there are plenty of opportunities to get yourself “accustomed” to open water by playing around at the beach. I think that body surfing and boogey boarding are fun ways to become more comfortable with being in the open water. Once you can do all of that with a smile on your face, go out with a group of friends, work your way past the surfers and swim parallel to the beach. You can always head inland if you get freaked out! 🙂

      • Good answers!!! I like the body surfing and boogey boarding suggestions – not something I’d immediately think of but a perfect way to have fun and learn at the same time! Thanks~

  5. I was given a tip when I first started tri’s and open water swimming to practice a length in the pool with my eyes closed whenever I put my head in the water, opening my eyes when taking a breath helps keep me from swimming into the lane lines or traffic in shared lanes. this tip has allowed me to replicate the murky waters of the Hudson River here in NY and some other less than pristine waters, now I find myself closing my eyes to focus in on my stroke, pull, and position. I also find that it helps me stay more balanced while swimming and in rough waters has prevented me from becoming disoriented.

    • I really like that idea to simulate murky water! I’ll remember that in the future. When I’ve done closed eye swimming in the past, its been to practice stroke count. I’ve never been a fan of it for my purposes because I always run into the lane lines or jam a finger on the wall. Your way, you get to see when you sight – and I think you get more out of it for open water training! Thanks for teaching me a useful reason to incorporate closed eye swimming!

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