Steven Munatones

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Steven Munatones hosting the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame ceremonies at the United Nations
Steven Munatones has set world open water swimming records from Japan to the Cayman Islands; shown with Lexie Kelly
Steven Munatones and Family: Rieko, Sabrina, Skyler, Sydney, and Sofia
Author, Commentator, Coach and Promoter
Kayaking for USA Swimming National Team
Open Water Swimming (book) published by Spomedis in Germany
Steven Munatones in Japanese advertisement
Steven Munatones in Japanese magazine article
Marathon swim poster in Japan
Steven Munatones in Lake Biwa Marathon Swim poster
In addition to founding the World Open Water Swimming Association and managing KAATSU Global and KAATSU Research Foundation, Steven Muñatones of Huntington Beach, California has spent his life in the open water as an athlete, coach, administrator, writer, race director, kayaker, paddler, official, observer, and adviser in the the sport of open water swimming. He was inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame as an Honour Swimmer in 2003.

Since 2010, he has served as the Chief Administrator and a voting member of the board of directors of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. He served on the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee from 2009-2011, on the judge panel for the 2012 H2Open Awards organized by H2Open Magazine, an award designed to celebrate achievement in open water swimming, and provides assistance on the sport of open water swimming to the Guinness Book of World Records. He was also the Technical Delegate for the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Athens, Greece and participated on the USA Triathlon Swim Collar Task Force.

He also founded the World Open Water Swimming Association, the WOWSA Awards, the Tsugaru Channel Swimming Association, the Swimming Wellness and Swimming Is Medicine programs, and the Open Water Swim Club in Huntington Beach, California. He created concepts such as the Half Century Club, Openwaterpedia, and the Oceans Seven that was showcased in a film called Defeating Oceans Seven by Red Bull Media House.


Aquatic Career

In addition to a decade of playing water polo including a member of the USA Water Polo Junior Development Team and the All-East Team at 2 National Sports Festivals, Munatones has completed several unprecedented marathon swims including:

He has also completed the following races:

Coaching Experience

He was the USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Team coach at the following competitions:

He has kayaked, paddled, escorted and coached several swimmers in numerous channels and lakes around the world including the Atlantic Ocean, Pacific Ocean, Caribbean Sea, Mediterranean Sea, Sea of Japan, South Pacific and the Hawaiian Islands. He has also given coaching clinics and camps throughout the USA, Canada, Mexico, Cayman Islands, Greece and Japan.

He also provides advice to many marathon swimmers, professional marathon swimmers and channel swimmers who attempt swims around the world including Penny Palfrey, Mike Miller, Rick Heltzel, and Diana Nyad.

Writing Experience

Since 1982, Munatones has written several cover stories and dozens of articles for Swimming World Magazine, U.S. Masters Swimming SWIMMER Magazine and Competitor Magazine.

He authored Open Water Swimming (book), published by Human Kinetics and has been translated from English into German and Polish. Swimming World Magazine describes the Open Water Swimming (book) as, "Whether you are planning on racing in an ocean, lake, river, canal, bay, dam, or reservoir, Open Water Swimming is your best guide to success. Steven Munatones wrote the perfect book for athletes of all levels who want to compete in the open waters of the world."

He has prepared open water swimming materials used by NBC, USA Swimming, Beijing Olympic Committee, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, National Public Radio and National Geographic Magazine. He wrote the script for Out of the Box, USA Swimming's 90-minute educational DVD on open water swimming and The Tactics and Techniques of Open Water Swimmers.

He is also a contributing writer to The Science of Swimming and is an adviser to the American Swimming Coaches Association's Journal of Swimming Research. He wrote Open Water Swimming, a comprehensive tome on open water swimming that was published in June 2011 by Human Kinetics.


Munatones is an International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame inductee and vice president. As its Chief Administrator, he created and manages the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame website. He was formerly a member of the FINA Technical Open Water Swimming Committee (resigned due to differences in opinion with FINA's decisions on safety in 2011) and was a long-time member of the USA Swimming Open Water Swimming Committee.

He also participated in the open water swimming task force of USA Triathlon in 2013.


Munatones appeared in five documentary films:

He also served as the NBC Olympics' Commentator for the 2008 men's and women's Olympic 10K Marathon Swim in Beijing, China. He also wrote the content for the USA Swimming Out-of-the-Box open water swimming video and the Tactics & Techniques of Elite Open Water Swimmers DVD:

Tactics & Techniques of Elite Open Water Swimmers

Open Water Swimming Conference

Munatones organized the 2-day Open Water Swimming Conference sponsored by U.S. Masters Swimming in San Francisco, California:

Open Water Swimming Brands

He authored Open Water Swimming, a text book on open water swimming as well as created the following:

He also conducted numerous other clinics for swimmers and triathletes as well as created Certification Programs for coaches, administrators and referees.

Open Water Swimming Terms

Munatones created the following open water swimming terms:

Race Director and Advisor

Munatones has served as a race director and helped organize dozens of open water swimming competitions, clinics and camps around the world including the following:

He also advises race directors from California to New York, Brazil, Cayman Islands, Fiji, Greece, Mexico and Japan and advised U.S. Masters Swimming on open water swimming.

Pan Pacific Swimming Championships

Munatones organized the 2011 USA Swimming National Open Water Swimming Championships and the Pan Pacific Swimming Championships in Long Beach, California where Tactics & Techniques of Elite Open Water Swimmers was filmed.

Special Olympics World Summer Games

Munatone was the Technical Director of the 1.5 km open water swimming competition and POW exhibition at the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games which was nominated for the 2011 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year:


WOWSA Awards

He has hosted the annual WOWSA Awards along with the annual International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame induction ceremonies and the Global Open Water Swimming Conference in various places around the world:


He was born and raised in Los Angeles, California, is a graduate of Harvard University, can speak, read and write Japanese and some Chinese, and currently resides in Huntington Beach, California where he coaches, researches, writes and promotes open water swimming and water polo.




1991年:国後島から北海道へのInternational Goodwill Swimをキャンセルしまう(国後島→ねむろ半島への16キロ)
1992年:富士五湖トライアスロンチャレンジ(前人未致のコース、世界初、5時間17分、スイム: 14.5 キロ+ バイク: 30キロ + ラン: 8キロ、NHKなどの放送)
2003年:International Swimming Hall of Fame (国際スイミングの殿堂)入り 2008年:Open Water Swimming Dictionary辞典を作成、北京オリンピックOlympic 10K Marathon Swimアナウンサーなど


1993年パンパシフィック水泳選手権大会(神戸)でSwimming World Magazineの代表者
2001年世界水泳選手権大会(福岡)、2003年世界水泳選手権大会(バルセロナ・スペイン)、 2005年世界水泳選手権大会(モントリアル)、2007年世界水泳選手権大会(メルボールン)で米国スイムチームコーチ
2006年、2007年、2009年の米国水泳連盟の米国スイムチームのNational Open Water Swimming Campのコーチ
2001年 、2005年、2007年USA SwimmingのAwardを受賞
2002 年パンパシフィック水泳選手権大会(横浜)及び2002年カリブ海での国際水泳大会で米国スイムチームのマネジャー
2006年のAmerican Swimming Coaches AssociationのWorld Clinicでのスペーカー


1985年~現在年:Swimming World Magazineの毎月の水泳・競泳・水球イベントのカバーストリー及び記事の執筆 
1987年:「Distant Shores: A Guidebook to Open Water Swimming」という本の執筆
1987年~1988年:ハワイのWaikiki Roughwater Swim(世界一の海上競泳大会)
1999年~2003年:USA Swimmingのウェッブサイトで国際・国内競泳についての記事の執筆


He and his wife Rieko have four children (Sabrina, Skyler, Sydney, and Sofia Munatones). One of Munatones' ancestors was Don José de Mazarredo y Salazar de Muñatones Cortázar, considered to be one of the best Spanish naval commanders of all time who was born in Bilbao, Spain where the Muñatones Castillo is located.

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