Ram Barkai

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Ram Barkai, renowned extreme swimmer from South Africa
Ram Barkai, swimming in Antarctica
Member of the Bering Strait Swim Relay near the Arctic Circle
Ram Barkai is a renowned cold water extreme swimmer who holds several world records. He holds the title in the most southernly open water swim ever performed when he swam in Antarctica. He also swam in mid-winter in Lake Zurich, Switzerland and organized the Patagonia Extreme Cold Water Challenge in the Patagonia region in South America where he was among the first individuals to successfully swim around Cape Horn, at the tip of South America.

Ram also organized the Cadiz Freedom Swim, the Speedo Ice Swim Africa and the 2012 Ice Swim Africa. He is the founder of the International Ice Swimming Association that was selected as the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year.

He has inspired people through his extreme swims and extraordinarily positive view of life and its challenges. He has done ice swims with Anne Marie Ward and Nuala Moore in Ireland, with Gavin Pike in Scotland, and with Ryan Stramrood, Toks Viviers, Kieron Palframan and Andrew Chin in Chile and Argentina. He will appear on Stan Lee's Superhumans television series for this ability to swim without a wetsuit or neoprene cap at lethally cold water temperatures.

In 2012, Barkai completed a 1.3 km swim in Folgefonna Glacier, an ice-bound lake in Jondal, Norway water temperature of 0.2˚C at 1000m above sea level. The swim is part of a new series on Discovery HD called Superhuman Showdown, a television show that features individuals with unique abilities that extend far beyond that of ordinary humans.

Barkai is a speaker at the 2011, 2012 and 2013 Global Open Water Swimming Conferences and was nominated for the Night Jar Travel Adventurers of the Year (South Africa).

Contents

World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nomination

Barkai was nominated for the 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year award. His nomination reads,

The world according to Ram is expansive and empowering. His refreshing view of human potential is without limitation. His enlightening perspective effectively utilizes the power of the mind, and extends the world of open water swimming beyond contemporary comprehension. The founder of the International Ice Swimming Association inspires swimmers to look at water in an entirely new light; temperature no longer becomes the limiting factor. If the ice has melted, Barkai considers it a potential field of play. At the same time, Barkai understands the risk of extreme swimming. He counsels individuals to proceed with mindful caution and utilizes intelligent planning. The physiological data that he compiles and analyzes, the swims that he organizes, the risks that he manages and identifies are extraordinarily useful to the open water swimming world. For his encouragement of thinking outside the norm, for his properly-managed extreme swims, for his support of ice swimmers around the world, Ram Barkai is a worthy nominee for the 2012 WOWSA Open Water Swimming Man of the Year.

World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year Nomination

Barkai's International Ice Swimming Association was nominated for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year. Its nomination reads,

Ice swimmers are extremists. These athletes come in all shapes and sizes with the unique ability to push themselves farther and colder than other humans and scientists think possible. But nothing is impossible for these hardened groups of extreme athletes. The International Ice Swimming Association, founded by Ram Barkai, promotes, advices, and ratifies individuals who attempt and achieve extreme open water swims in water temperatures under 5°C (41°F). Its standardization of rules, protocols, and procedures are helping to shape the sport of ice swimming. Its growth may someday lead to an inclusion of ice swimming in the Winter Olympics. For its emphasis on safety, for its interest in pushing the physical limits of where ice swimmers can go, for organizing the sport in a global unified manner, the International Ice Swimming Association is a worthy nominee for the 2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year.

2013 Bering Strait Swim Relay

Barkai was a member of the successful, unprecedented, 6-day Bering Strait Swim relay, a 53-mile (86 km) relay crossing from Cape Dezhnev in Chukotka, Russia, to Cape Prince of Wales in the state of Alaska, USA.

Relay Members in Bering Strait Swim

SWIMMERS
1. Vladimir Chegorin, Russia
2. Maria Chizhova, Novosibirsk, Russia
3. Elena Guseva, Russia
4. Ram Barkai, Cape Town, South Africa
5. Jack Bright, UK
6. Oksana Veklich, Blagoveshchensk, Russia
7. Aleksandr Jakovlevs, Jelgava, Latvia (Starter,Swimmer,Navigator)
8. Matías Ola, Buenos Aires /Tucuman Argentina
9. Henri Kaarma, Tallinn, Estonia
10. Toomas Haggi, Tallinn, Estonia
11. Nuala Moore, Ireland
12. Anne Marie Ward, Donegal, Ireland
13. Toks Viviers, Cape Town, South Africa
14. Melissa O’Reilly (‘Mo’), Lambertville, New Jersey, USA
15. Ryan Stramrood, Cape Town, South Africa
16. Cristian Vergara, Santiago, Chile
17. Craig Lenning, Colorado, USA
18. Rafał Ziobro, Krakow, Poland
19. Andrew Chin, Cape Town, South Africa
20. Jackie Cobell, Tunbridge Wells, UK
21. James Pittar, Australia
22. Paolo Chiarino, Italy
23. Mariia Yrjö-Koskinen, Finland
24. Ivan Papulshenko, Ukraine
25. Zdenek Tlamicha, Czech Republic
26. Zhou Hanming, China
27. Oleg Adamov, Russia
28. Andrei Agarkov, Russia
29. Alekseev Semen, Russia
30. Tatiana Alexandrova, Russia
31. Roman Belan, Russia (Swimmer & Starter)
32. Elena Semenova, Russia
33. Alexander Brylin, Russia
34. Afanasii Diackovskii, Russia
35. Vladimir Nefatov, Russia (Swimmer and Chief Starter)
36. Evgenii Dokuchaev, Russia
37. Oleg Docuckaev, Russia (Swimmer and Chief Organiser)
38. Roman Efimov, Russia
39. Dmitrii Filitovich, Russia
40. Olga Filitovich, Russia (Swimmer & Starter/helper)
41. Victor Godlevskiy, Russia (Swimmer, Starter/helper)
42. Olga Golubeva, Russia
43. Alexei Golubkin, Russia
44. Alexander Golubkin, Russia (Youngest Swimmer at 13 yrs old)
45. Alexsandr Iurkov, Russia (Starter, Swimmer, Navigator)
46. Oleg Ivanov, Russia
47. Pavel Kabakov, Russia Swimmer, starter, navigator
48. Eduard Khodakovskiy, Russia
49. Aleksandr Komarov, Russia
50. Aleksandr Kuliapin, Russia
51. Andrey Kuzmin, Russia
52. Irina Lamkina, Russia
53. Vladimir Litvinov, Russia
54. Andrey Mikhalev, Russia
55. Victor Moskvin, Russia
56. Nikolay Petshak, Russia
57. Sergey Popov, Russia
58. Vladimir Poshivailov, Russia
59. Grigorii Prokopchuk, Russia
60. Dmitrii Zalka, Russia
61. Natalia Seraya, Russia
62. Viacheslav Shaposhnikov, Russia
63. Olga Sokolova, Russia
64. Andrei Sychev, Russia
65. Alexei Tabakov, Russia
66. Nataliia Usachaeva, Russia
CREW
67. Nikolay Khitrik, Russia (Organiser)
68. Lurii Melnikov, Russia (Organiser)
69. Sergei Chernukhin, Russia (Organiser)
70. Irina Makarova, Russia (Interpreter, Starter, helper)
71. Alexey Svistunov, Russia (President of Russian Book of Records)
72. Rafael Valdes Mendosa, Russian (Interpreter, Starter)
73. Evgeny Novazheev, Russia(Kite surfer)
74. Denis Berezhnoy, Russia (Kite surfer)
75. Sergey Semenov, Russia (kite surfer)
76. Mariia Netrebenko, Russia (mass media representative)
77. Viktor Muzhetckii, Russia (cameraman)
78. Vladislav Bochkovskii, Russia (mass media representative)
79. Vladislav Bykov, Russia (cameraman)
80. Dmitrii Timofeev, Russia (research team)
81. Victoria Brylin, Russia (recovery team)
82. Nataliya Fatyanova, Russia (Head of medical group)
83. Irina Zhidkova, Russia (doctor)
84. Aleksandr Gremitskikh, Russia (Chief Judge)
85. Krutikov Konstantin, Russia (mass media representative)
86. Gavriil Ugarov, Russia (research crew)
87. Denis Kabakov, Russia (support crew)
88. Kiriil Zaika, Russia (support crew)
89. Natalia Yael Szydlowski, Argentina (nutritionist)
90. Paolo Adolfo Testa, Argentina (coach)
91. Carlos Eduardo Reges, Argentina (doctor)
92. Anibal Ariel Calderon, Argentina (cameraman)
93. Guillermo Gallishaw, Argentina (cameraman)
94. Alasdair Ross McCulloch, South Africa (cameraman)
CREW OF IRTYSH HOSPITAL SHIP
95. Yason Demeev, Russia (Chief of Hospital)
96. Oleg Revutskiy, Russia (surgeon)
97. Vyacheslav Grigoryev, Russia (traumatologist)
98. Valeriy Koshkin, Russia (dermatologist)
99. Svetlana Gulenkova, Russia (stomatologist)
100. Inna Lesnova, Russia (therapeutist)
101. Vladimir Savinskiy, Russia (doctor of functional diagnostics)
102. Sergey Demyanenko, Russia (Doctor of Clinical Laboratory Diagnostics)
103. Sergey Milovanov, Russia (anesthesiologist)
104. Denis Yakushin, Russia (anesthesiologist)
105. Georgiy Feodoridi, Russia (neurosurgeon)
106. Igor Rogushin, Russia (opthamologist)
107. Yuriy Obraztsov, Russia (infectionist)
108. Oleg Fartushin, Russia (radiologist)
109. Elena Ionova, Russia (pharmacist)
110. Larisa Popova, Russia (nurse)
111. Svetlana Demenok, Russia (nurse)
112. Galina Domnina, Russia (nurse)
113. Tatyana Bolshakova, Russia (nurse)
114. Svetlana Panidova, Russia (nurse)
115. Maya Surgayeva, Russia (nurse)
116. Ludmila Denisova, Russia (nurse)
117. Valentina Shilova, Russia (nurse)
118. Elena Repula, Russia (nurse)
119. Elena Kukurba, Russia (nurse)
120. Elena Sadovaya, Russia
121. Tatyana Nikolaeva, Russia

Antarctic Circle Ice Challenge

Barkai is a member of the unprecedented ice swim by six South African ice swimmers south of the Antarctic Circle at 66.5622° South: Toks Viviers, Andrew Chin, Ryan Stramrood, Kieron Palframan, and Gavin Pike in the Antarctic Circle Ice Challenge. Ryan Stramrood, Barkai and Kieron Palframan attempted an Ice mile in Neko Harbour in Antarctica. Andrew Chin did a 1 km swim and Toks Viviers and Gavin Pike completed an ice mile in Paradise Harbour in Antarctica in -1ºC (30.2ºF) water amid icebergs, orcas, and leopard seals.

Videos

Ram Barkai Swimming At 0.3˚C

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