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Swim Equipment Tips

Having the right equipment when swimming open water is so important; I am regularly giving tips to swimmers on what gear they should be using. At the end of the day it’s all about comfort and personal choice. If you are racing don’t save any new bit of kit for race day, test it in training first. If you are a recreational swimmer having good equipment can still make the difference between a good swim experience and a great one. No you don’t need to spend a fortune on gear. Here are my top tips: Seeing where you’re going is so important. All goggles have anti...

Summer?? 2012

Here we are half way through the year already. After one of the wettest and cloudiest starts to May London really turned it on for the last 10 days of the month. Average temperatures were around 25C and blue skies. The Speedo Human Race series went from threatening to cancel their May 27 swim due to frigid temperatures to holding an event in balmy 19C waters. Crazy. June seems to be starting like May, CWC, Cloudy, Wet, Cold....

On The Move

It doesn’t seem like that long ago I was packing for the Southern Hemisphere summer. Well here I am following the sun (supposedly) and find myself back in London. Water temperatures are hovering around the 10-12 degrees Celcius and with incessant rain and cloud it will take some time before the water heats up. There are plenty of swimmers who have through acclimatisation managed to adapt to swimming in these temperatures. It’s important that everyone is realistic with their abilities, for comfort and more importantly safeties sake. ...

Swimming Faster

Before I delve into the heart of this story I feel it is important to give you some context. I am not an elite level athlete; in fact I left full time training behind in 2000 after a decade of early starts and ten swim sessions a week. These days I am a full time swim coach, a coach who swims for health, recreation, social, fun and the odd competition. One of my foundations of coaching principles is practicing what I preach. I know my training principles, the equipment I use and the techniques I employ all work because I practice and use them myself. My...

Fit&Abel Update

It’s an old adage but a goody; time flies when you’re having fun. It is certainly appropriate for this New Zealand summer. I have had a blast in New Zealand and my home town of Christchurch and have plenty of people to thank for making this season so successful. But first I want to congratulate all of you, yes YOU, all of the swimmers and triathletes out there, whether you are beginner, elite or somewhere in the middle. Thanks for making the sport of swimming such a great fun social challenging awesome activity.  Well done to all the newcomers to open water swimming and triathlon....

How to Zip it Up?

A design feature you will notice with a lot of great swim wetsuits is that the zip closes from the top to bottom as opposed to most other wetsuits which zip from bottom to top. Why ? Pretty simple really, it’s faster to undo and get out of your wetsuit. Secondly there is no chance of anyone accidentally pulling your zip cord and undoing your wetsuit while you are swimming. This top down zip feature has been much discussed during our swim sessions this summer. It is a great feature but to zip top down you must first join the zip behind your back. I have...

Happy 2012!

Welcome to 2012. I would like to thank everyone that has supported Fit&Abel and helped share in my passion of swimming over the last 12 months. May we spend more time in the water in 2012, may the sun shine brighter, may we swim further, faster and have a lot more fun doing it. Is that all too much to ask? The next 12 months will tell....

Open Water Swimming: The Basics

I have been back in New Zealand for three weeks now and have been busy with the start of the Open Water Fitness and Technique series at the amazing Pegasus Lake North Canterbury, 1 2 1 open water swim sessions, providing swim support at local triathlon events, planning coaching clinics and also maintaining my own open water swimming training with a little bit of competing thrown in for good measure. I have had plenty of opportunity to talk to swimmers from a wide level of experience and background and have been finding a common theme amongst those who are preparing for their first open water swim. These areas...