May 27th, 2016

The Open H20 Swim Journey Continues

Dan Abel in his 'Happy Place'

Dan Abel in his ‘Happy Place’

On Monday FitandAbels Dan Abel will head north to the UK for the Northern Hemisphere season;

“It is time once again leave behind wonderful family and friends and to head north to visit many friends who have become like family.
It’s been amazing this summer to witness and be part of the growth of open water swimming in New Zealand. To all those who have ventured into the open water and achieved on any level – congratulations. To all those who have allowed our team and our crew (Nemo!) to be part of your journey I would like to personally thank you. I leave behind an excellent team in New Zealand (Ollie, Chloe and Mel) who will continue the journey.
I would also like to thank our working partnerships with whom we share a a goal of sharing the excitement, joy, benefits, friendships and adventures of open water swimming with more and more people. We couldn’t do it without them. Please support our partners where you can:
And in the UK
My trips North and South over the last 5 years make for a crazy 12 months each season. I need to be extremely organised and make sacrifices in order to achieve an endless summer. All the partnerships above enable this to occur. Why do it? The UK has been a breeding ground of open water swim ‘fanatics’ over the last 10 plus years. The explosion of open water swimming throughout the UK and Europe has been phenomenal. This means that the amount of learning and development for all things ‘open water swimming’ has been immense. Travelling the globe allows me to keep abreast of the latest and greatest in open water swimming. I am then able to bring this knowledge and enthusiasm back to New Zealand with its small population and endless open water swim opportunities. Teaching adults to swim. Introducing them to the open water. Taking them on RealSwim Adventures. Working to protect our water environment. Working to ensure we are safe in the open water. It is a lot of hours. It is a lot of hard work. But it’s also loads of fun. Sharing in so many individual journeys and experiences is the reward.
Thanks to the people for making it worthwhile. Thanks to the working partnerships for making it possible. See you in the spring all my Kiwi family and friends. See you soon everyone in the UK. Cheers, Dan”
Our New Zealand Summer Launch is 20 September , 6pm

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May 26th, 2016

The Performance Triangle

The Performance Triangle

The Performance Triangle

It is really important to remember in open water swimming that your performance is based on three core ‘foundations’. Athletes regularly fall into the trap of focussing purely on Fitness when there are most often equal or sometimes easier gains to be made in Technique and Open Water Skills. For any program we recommend you make sure that each side of the Performance Triangle ; Fitness, Open Water Skills, Technique are given specific and equal attention to ensure you achieve the best possible gains in your open water swimming.

The key word is ‘specific’. Technique training is a very different approach from Fitness training. And it is very difficult to work on stroke technique in the open water. Make sure you take this into consideration when training and ensure your training venues and approach tick all sides of the Performance Triangle. If you need help please ask ;

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May 14th, 2016

Share the Love

Fraser Nooroa Education Trust for Fraser's four children.

Fraser Nooroa Education Trust for Fraser’s four children.

As most of our readers will be aware we run RealSwim Adventures Cook Islands twice a year. The warm welcome with which we are treated from everyone we come into contact with in the Cook Islands makes it a place we simply love to return. It’s also nice when we can give back … Shannon is a Cook Island ‘local’ , she has been busy supporting our RealSwims over the last couple of years and could do with some help at the moment :

Fraser Nooroa was a good friend of many, well known in the Cook Islands community for his contribution to Cook Islands sports and being an all round good bloke. After a year of treatment in New Zealand Fraser returned home to Rarotonga at the beginning of this year and in March he sadly lost his battle with cancer. Fraser has left behind four gorgeous children. One of Fraser’s wishes was that all four of his children have the opportunity for further education. A group of his friends have got together to start up the Fraser Nooroa Education Trust in his honor. If you would like to donate towards this cause or for further information please contact me

We ‘swimmers’ tend to be a generous bunch. If this situation gets the heart strings going and you have some spare change I’m sure Shannon would love to hear from you. # OpenWaterSwimmers – we care .

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May 3rd, 2016

Swim Kit Additions

Two fantastic additions we have made to our swim kit this season are the AquaFlex Goggle by Zoggs and ear plugs by SwimEars .

Aquaflex by Zoggs

Aquaflex by Zoggs

The Aquaflex goggle becomes available in New Zealand from July 2016.We think it fills the gap perfectly in Zoggs range of goggles that we recommend for our swimmers. Now there truly is a goggle for everyone. At the small, low profile spectrum we have the RaceSpex while at the upper region we have the higher profile (and by far the most popular) Zoggs Predator Titanium . The Aquaflex fits perfectly between the two providing a lower profile goggle than the Predator while still providing a good field of vision. Our advice for goggles as always is try before you buy but we truly feel that one of these three styles will meet your swim needs.

For ear plugs we are stoked to be using SwimEars. Why? Most earplugs have a ‘one size fits all’ mentality. SwimEars enable you to custom fit the plug to your ears – how cool is that? If you are like us one of the frustrating things about wearing an earplug is you are then cut off from your swim mates – you can no longer hear them. Well SwimEars are also designed to let sound in! The third ‘win’ for us is that the plugs are connected via a leash. We were a little sceptical to begin however the leash fits nicely under the cap and that one time in hundred your custom fitted plug falls out (maybe when swimming with dolphins) you don’t lose it!



Well done Zoggs and well done SwimEars for helping to make our swims just that little more comfortable.


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April 7th, 2016

Action for Freshwater

Choose clean water

Choose clean water

Last month we attended a NZ Government Consultation evening in Christchurch hosted by The Hon Dr Nick Smith, Minister for the Environment. It was pleasing to hear him acknowledge that “Freshwater is New Zealands greatest natural resource”. It was concerning to hear how long the Minister is planning to take to address some of the issues currently impacting our freshwater in New Zealand. There are certainly many different groups, often with polarising views on how we should protect and manage our Freshwater. These groups all have strong opinions on how we should manage our Freshwater. We are of the opinion that we need to protect our current water quality and work as much as possible to improve it. The current government minimum water standard is “Suitable for Boating and Wading” … we think it is possible to boat and wade in a sewer pond. Therefore we give this ‘goal’ an ‘F’ rating… ‘F’ for … Frankly not meeting the standards most Kiwi’s would expect. Granted this statement is a little inflammatory but the point is extremely relevant. Lets aim for a water quality that we can be proud of … We support raising the minimum standard to swimmable to safeguard the health of New Zealanders, current and future! If you feel passionately about protecting this precious resource now and for the future what can you do?  We recommend following

and making a submission that Forest and Bird have set up:

Please take 5 mins to do this. Every message they hear that demands ‘swimmable’ as the minimum standard is powerful.

We are strongest together. ‪#‎wechoosecleanwater‬

NOTE: We suggest copying & pasting this sentence into the first paragraph.

“I support raising the minimum standard to swimmable to safeguard the health of our people”




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March 21st, 2016

Chopper Swim Challenge

The Chopper Challenge team (absent - Axel Wohlfarth, Rosie Sharman, Donal Barry)

The Chopper Challenge team (absent – Axel Wohlfarth, Rosie Sharman, Donal Barry)

Some of Auckland’s based swimmers have taken on-board Olaf Adam’s idea to raise funds by swimming from Waiheke Island to Mechanics Bay (the rescue helicopter base). It is a cool 20km. While this may be a short stroll in the park for experienced open water swimmers like Dan Abel, it is a big ask and stretch for some of those that have signed up for the swim, which is scheduled for the 31st of March. Participation has been split into solo swimmers (non-wetsuit and wetsuit!) and a couple of relays to ensure that all abilities are able to join the fund raising effort.

The team is currently working hard on their marketing of the event (and training, of course) and hope to edge closer to their $20k goal by the time the race starts – currently already in excess of $11k have been contributed!

Updates on participating swimmers can be found on the Chopper Challenge Facebook site:

Chopper Swim Challenge Facebook

Fund raising is being tracked via the Every Day Hero website.

Should you have any questions, please contact Axel on or Olaf Adam on



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