Sure, splashing in the pool is fun, but nothing beats the thrill of open water swimming. Whether in the sea, in a lake or against the current in a river, it's like the difference between mountain biking and a spin class. "It brings with it a sense of adventure – of vast expanses and unique conditions to conquer," says Megan Melgaard, a former professional open water swimmer.
Open water swimming is intense and challenging, which is why it is a key feature of Navy SEAL's training. For triathletes, it can be helpful to perfect the open water game to compete in the segment where most racers see a weakness. However, there are skills to learn (and acquire equipment) before plunging into the depths of nature.
"Open water is dynamic," says Melgaard. "No two swim types are exactly alike." Use these tips and procedures.