Pool vs Open Water

We recently welcomed Mr. Alcatraz, Gary Emich, to Sandycove to swim with us during his visit to Cork. His title is due to his phenomenal 801 recorded Alcatraz swims over the past 18 years.

Gary has written an interesting article about the difference between distance in the pool and in the open water. The article is available to read here. While it is directed towards triathletes, it is relevant to all open water swimmers.

On a similar thread, Ned Denison shares some thoughts gained from the recent Speckled Door to Sandycove swim:

Some really unscientific analysis of the benefit of the wind and rising tides – in our favour.

My best recent 1,500m time in the 50m pool = just under 21 minutes…so if I could hold that for 5,000m = 70 minutes
I know for sure I can swim 5,000m in a 25m pool in well under 75 minutes-so call it 73 minutes
In theory pushing off walls make you faster – so call my 5,000m time 75 minutes in an imaginary pool where I didn’t have walls to flip off

My Speckled Door time was 66 minutes
Call it 63 minutes if I swam a perfect line and imagine that the surface had been smooth – call it 58 minutes
So – the tide and wind helped me by 17 minutes over the swim…25% assistance

All of the times above are complete approximations…but you might find it interesting nonetheless.

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