No Room For Panic

Much of life comes down to one principle: NEVER PANIC!

This crucial to success in open-water swimming. Panic will sink even the most talented athlete in the water, while composure and confidence can make an average swimmer excel. That’s why every triathlete should practice these open-water skills:


  • Look forward, then breathe.
  • Lift your head and eyes but keep your mouth in the water.
  • Once your head is up, rotate to breathing side, put one goggle in water.
  • Breathe, then put your face back down.
  • Sighting should be done every 6-8 strokes, unless you are drafting.


  • Follow the bubbles. If you can’t see the bubbles, swim harder.
  • Drafting in the water can save 50 percent of your energy at same speed.
  • Draft on the feet or the hip of a swimmer in front.
  • Take an occasional sight to make sure the leader is not off course.


Beach Start

  1. Kick up ankles to run further in deep water.
  2. Use dolphin dives to get to deep water.

Water Start

  1. Tread water before start and keep your legs horizontal not vertical
  2. Make sure you have sufficient space around you

And remember:

  • Clean water is fast water.
  • Start where you know you can either swim in clean water or draft right away.

By Matt Zepeda
Zoom Performance Head Coach, USAT Level 1 coach

Zoom Performance is a professional endurance coaching company working with athletes from beginner triathletes to Ironman World Championship qualifiers.  Certified coaches provide customized programs along with metabolic testing, bike fit, one-on-one analysis, clinics, and sports nutrition programs to allow athletes to take it to the next level. Where your success is our goal! Register for the event Volunteer for the event

Race Updates

    Water Temperature: 76 F / 24 C
    151 days and 1 hours ago