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Tips for turning around open water buoys

Open water buoys play a pivotal role in competitions, serving as a vital focal point where swimmers converge, and these buoys serve as crucial markers that guide the race.

If you are drafting in a group of swimmers, try not to be on the inside track as you swim towards the turning buoy as this is the point all the other swimmers are aiming for.

The more experienced open water swimmers will have strategies to cope with this, such as speeding up into the turn and holding their space.

If you are a less confident open water swimmer, practise turning around open water buoys using the following tips:

  • it may be best to be on the outside of the group at the buoy
  • this will generally keep you out of trouble, but will slightly increase the distance you have to travel
  • if it’s a right angle turn you can swim just past the buoy, then turn onto your back and then onto your front (corkscrew turn), at the same time changing direction to make the turn at a right angle.

Open water turning buoys training session

It’s time to get in some open water training sessions and hone those turning skills to perfection.

Source a local facility and never train by yourself in the open water environment, no matter how confident you now feel swimming in open water.

Use your open water training sessions to practise turning around and sighting the buoys.

Remember the most important thing is to have fun in this great sport of open water swimming.