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Old 10-27-2010
KatieK KatieK is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Scottsdale, AZ, USA
Posts: 295

Originally Posted by CoachBillL View Post
See a report by a participant in the race; there seems no doubt that the support structure was inadequate.( In my limited experience, anyone who goes face up or raises a hand should have help within 2 minutes or less.
It sounds like the safety precautions at this event were abysmal.

I'm still mystified, though, about the point of view that racing shouldn't take place in warm water.

I live in a hot climate. Our summers are pretty similar to the weather in Dubai right now. Lake temperatures get into the mid-to-high eighties, and air temperatures surpass 115. No matter how warm the lakes get, they always feel like a refreshing break from the *truly* hot pool.

I have no problem swimming in these conditions, BUT I've gotten hypothermia swimming in 65-degree water for less than 30 minutes. I know 65-degree water isn't inherently dangerous because many of the people on this forum swim in much colder temperatures. I'm trying to learn to tolerate colder water because the marathon swims I eventually hope to attempt require it.

What's the difference?
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Old 10-27-2010
sasquatch sasquatch is offline
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: South Jordan, Utah
Posts: 62

Don't mean to take away from the discussion of this tragedy (poor race organization/lack of concern for participant safety) but since you asked...

Katie, my short answer is that I don't know for sure what the difference is. However, I came across this article on the differences between types of fat a while ago. Talks about how you can "get used to" the cold, or how you physically change and adapt to the cold.

If this is how it works, brown fat actually could work against you in warm water. If you're used to swimming in colder water (and have built up brown fat to adapt) you could overheat more easily in warmer temps. I'm just postulating here, there is probably more to it than that.

Personally, I enjoy swimming in 55-70 F (13-21 C) water much more than 70-80 F (21-27 C). Maybe that's because the OW around me is usually in the lower range so that's what I'm used to. I get uncomfortable (usually nauseated, and short of breath) very quickly if I attempt to maintain my usual pace in a warm pool during the summer months. Is it mental? Possibly, at least in part. However, if/when I have to swim in warmer water, I can slow down. I'm not racing anyone but myself and would never reach near the levels of physical exertion that elite swimmers do in a 10k race.

Over the course of the professional open water marathon season I think swimmers are exposed to a wide temperature spectrum at various race locations. It would be difficult to replicate them all for training, not to mention the lack of time between events to become physically acclimatized to each. Sounds like several of the participants in this event had trouble with the warmer water. How much warmer was this event than the previous race? I wonder what the how the training conditions of each competitor differed. Did those who train more in colder areas have a harder time at this event than warm water swimmers? If Katie and I were compared in a case study the answer would be appear to be yes.

Last edited by sasquatch : 10-27-2010 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 11-19-2010
splashingpat splashingpat is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 589
Default open water vs land opportunities....i guess I am not a true fish!

Originally Posted by haschu33 View Post
For my experience life gets a lot more intense and joyful if I am aware of my own impermanence. I could even think of participating in an OW event ;-)
Unfortunately I constantly keep forgetting about impermanence.

In fact, we could all die at any moment.
That is the point.
Hang on in there...

PS. Some years ago I saw a British stamp that showed
a cartoon where a man went to the pharmacy and asked:
'Do you have something against the human condition? 'That was truly British.
and I like you
and I hope I will continue to learn from you
and I know have to go look up the word "impermanence" Thanks once again

i rather dance than swim
i guess but that's
splashnpat! ZumbaPat till Shinjipat...we'll see:0 hello swimmNguys!

hi my haschu33
good friend along (with my belief)
is a wise man as well!

Last edited by splashingpat : 11-21-2010 at 02:39 AM.
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Old 12-09-2010
PASA PASA is offline
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Central California
Posts: 49
Default Crippen email re protecting athletes 9 days before race

Here's a small news update on this tragic event:
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