||“I participated in my first open water race because my coach at the time thought it would be something fun for me to do the day after pool-Nationals in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Even though I was challenged and frustrated during that first race, I enjoyed the experience and liked swimming in an environment where I felt more free and comfortable than I did in the pool. I eventually moved up in distance from the 5K to the 10K and then on to longer races, and I found that the longer the distance, the better I seemed to do. I think the other main component that kept me interested in open water swimming was the opportunity I had to travel and to meet new people through the sport. Over the years, I’ve developed some of my best friendships through the sport of open water swimming, and the people and places I’ve gotten to know are definitely one of the main reasons I continue to swim!”
- Erica Rose, 1998 World Champion and multi-time National Champion
“I was invited to a USA Swimming Open Water camp for people who never tried it before. There, we were expected to participate in the National Championships in Ft. Myers Florida and I won my first 10K.”
- Chloe Sutton, National Champion and FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup winner
“I wanted a T-shirt that says ‘USA National Team’. It turned out to be a very smart decision.”
- Mark Warkentin, National Champion and FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup winner
"Open-water swimming is swimming in its purest form - it's just you and the elements."
- Steven Munatones, quote in New York Times (August 26, 2005)
"I love it because its a lot harder and more complex then pool swimming. Plus, its longer and I'm not that great at flip turns. The best thing is you get to travel and meet people from all over the world."
- Kristen Groome, FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup winner