Ten amazing facts on open water swimming

Set among the stunning surroundings of Loch Lomond, the Open Water Swimming events will be staged across four days at Glasgow 2018.

Races will take place on Wednesday 8 August, Thursday 9 August, Saturday 11 August and Sunday 12 August with a variety of different formats to enjoy including 5km, 10km and 25km races. Entry is free and un-ticketed so make sure you come along to see some of Europe’s best open water swimmers compete for European glory.

Want to know more about the sport of open water swimming? Here are 10 things you may not have known:

  • Open water swimming is one of the oldest sports in existance and dates as far back as 2000 years.
  • The sport made its first appearance at an Olympic Games in 2008 in Bejing. Britain done particularly well that year, winning two silvers and a bronze across men's and women's 10km races.
  • The distance of each event varies from 1km to a whopping 80km, but at major competitive level, the typical distances are 5km, 10km and 25km.
  • Open water races can take place in seas, lochs, lakes, rivers, canals and reservoirs, as long as they are deemed to be safe.
  • There are no world open water swimming records because each outdoor venue can be so different. This is not just in length but differences such as water temperature and water and weather conditions.
  • Swimming outdoors is much better for burning calories than indoor pool swimming. Swimming in colder water makes you work every single muscle, and means that your body is trying to keep you warm at the same time.
  • Italy and Germany have largely dominated open water swimming events at the past few European Aquatics Championships, winning just under half of the 168 medals awarded since 1991.
  • Apart from giving your body a good workout, open water swimming can also increase your blood circulation, boost your immune system and improve your skin.
  • The open water swimming events at Glasgow 2018 will take place in the famous waters of Loch Lomond. The largest stretch of inland water in Great Britain by surface area.
  • Englishman Daniel Fogg became the first British athlete to win an open water swimming event at the European Aquatics Championships back in 2014 in Berlin, when he saw off competition from former world champion Thomas Lurz to take gold in the 5km race.

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