In open water, always swim with a swimming cap – preferably in a strong signal color. A monkfish is also an indispensable piece of equipment that all open water swimmers must have. Last but not least, we also recommend that you always bring a whistle with lifeguard class.
Why do you need a bathing cap?
The bathing cap insulates when the water is cold, and ensures that you are visible in the water. With a visible bathing cap, you and your swimming partner can more easily keep an eye on each other.
If you swim in cold water or you tend to quickly cool down in open water, it can be an advantage to have a neoprene hood under the bathing cap. The neoprene hood insulates significantly better than a thin bathing cap, and the head in particular is a point with great heat dissipation.
Why should you swim with a monkfish?
A monkfish is an inflatable swimming buoy in a distinct color. With a monkfish, it is much easier for other users of the water to see you – even from a long distance. A monkfish is significantly clearer than a bathing cap.
If you get tired, the monkfish can also help with buoyancy while you take a break. Be aware, however, that a monkfish is not considered a life-saving piece of equipment.
Why should you bring a whistle?
A whistle makes it possible to make contact with other people over long distances – in the water or on land. It is possible with a whistle to call for help from people who otherwise would not have heard your cry. The whistle can advantageously be mounted on the sea bag or fastened in the wetsuit’s zipper cord.
Why do you need goggles?
If you swim without goggles, you have to swim with your head above the water – more than ever, to be able to orient yourself. This upsets your balance, your legs sink and your swimming becomes slower and more strenuous.
There are many different types and brands at very different prices – and it is not always the most expensive that are best. They are available with advanced adjustment mechanisms or just a double elastic, and they are available with or without padding at the eyes. They are available in blue, yellow, green and clear glass – and even with mirror glass. We always recommend using light glass when swimming in open water, as it increases visibility.
The goggles are almost always misted at the start of a longer swim – whether it is in the swimming pool or in open water. This is due to temperature differences between the face, the glasses and the water. This is done by taking off the glasses, rubbing a little saliva on the glass, rinsing them and putting them on again. Practice it in the swimming pool while treading waters at the deep end of the pool, then you are prepared to be able to do the same in open water.
It is important that you are comfortable with your goggles – and you may have to try several types before you find a model that fits.
Why do you need a wetsuit?
The wetsuit is important for your safety. First of all, in connection with cold and fatigue. The wetsuit both insulates and carries up. It is possible to keep warm for an hour or more in 16 degree hot water – and if you get tired, with a little practice you can lie on your back with folded hands behind your neck and relax – try it.
It is important that you gain experience in swimming with a wetsuit under safe conditions. The suit changes your balance and you can easily feel a little trapped the first few times you wear the suit. If necessary, try the suit in a swimming pool before going out into the open water.
Which wetsuit should I wear?
Wetsuits are different. Some can be bought cheaply (DKK 200-300). They are normal for surfing – they keep the body warm, but are not suitable for fast swimming due to poor fit and poor movement in the shoulders and arms. A good wetsuit for swimming is somewhat more expensive (2000-3000 DKK). It consists of a more flexible material and has a smooth surface, which also helps on the go.
There are different types of wetsuits. The most common type of wetsuit has long legs and long sleeves. It is good to swim crawl in, and provides buoyancy to the whole body. You lie high in the water with such a suit. You can also get suits with long legs and short or no arms. It ensures even better mobility and better water sensation, but requires you to be a skilled crawler swimmer. Suits with short legs – also called a ‘shorty’ – are good to swim breaststroke in because it ensures full movement in the elbows and knees.
How should the wetsuit fit?
The wetsuit should have a good fit and it should fit fairly tight. It is easiest to put on the suit if both the suit and the body are dry. A wetsuit will give way and adapt to the body when you get in the water. Get evt. your swimming companion to help close the zipper and velcro strap at the neck. The wetsuit must be tight and it can feel uncomfortable the first time you wear it. It is therefore a good idea to try several types of wetsuit.
We recommend that you use an ointment such as ‘Bodyglide’ or ‘Suit-Juice’ to ensure that there is no annoying friction on the neck, shoulders and possibly. elsewhere. Very ugly chafing can easily occur during 5-10 km. swimming. Some swimmers swear by Vaseline, but there is a risk that your suit will suffer damage, and depending on the make, the warranty may lapse.
Be careful not to grab the nails too hard – they will easily cut through the fragile material. If the damage has occurred, however, it can be easily repaired with neoprene glue eg ‘Black Witch’.