noun - A trial swim (or an assessment swim or a check out swim or a qualifying swim) is a mandatory open water swim required by governing bodies of swimmers prior to attempting a channel swim or marathon swim or open water swim, and is part of the governing body's duty of care
Types of Assessment Swims
- For ocean swims or short-distance open water swims, swimmers are required to swim a certain distance usually a small percentage of the total distance of the open water swimming competition. The 2-mile Dwight Crum Pier-to-Pier Swim in Southern California requires swimmers to pass a 500-meter check out swim. Decisions of the lifeguards at check out are final.
- For the Great Chesapeake Bay Swim in Maryland's Chesapeake Bay, applicants must submit documentation that they have either completed a recent open water swim or completed a 3-mile pool swim in under 2 hours 15 minutes.
- For the Rottnest Channel Swim in Western Australia, a solo swimmer must have either completed a Rottnest Channel Swim solo crossing within the previous two years or completed a 10 km qualifying swim between 1 November and 1 February.
- For the International Self-Transcendence Marathon Swim in Lake Zurich, Switzerland, solo swimmers must confirm they are able to swim 6 hours at a minimum speed of 2.8 km per hour.
- For Lake Ontario marathon swims in Canada, solo swimmers must complete an outdoor, open water, continuous trial swim of not less than one-third of the intended distance, with a maximum of 10 miles (16 km), to test the swimmer's readiness.
- For the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim in New York City, solo swimmers must complete a 4-hour qualifying swim and submit their 1-hour maximum distance swim for consideration.
- For a Cook Strait crossing, a 6-hour swim in 15ºC or less with a minimum speed of 3 km per hour is recommended to be successful.
- For the English Channel, the Channel Swimming Association and the Channel Swimming & Piloting Federation require a ratified 6-hour open water swim by solo swimmers at least 14 days before the swimmer's swim tide period starts. The 6-hour swim can be completed at any stage from 30 months before the planned swim date and must be performed in water 60ºF or less.
- For the English Channel, the Channel Swimming Association and the Channel Swimming & Piloting Federation require a ratified 2-hour open water swim by relay swimmers at least 14 days before the swimmer's swim tide period starts. The 6-hour swim can be completed at any stage from 18 months before the planned swim date. The team leader is responsible for confirming the relay's 2-hour swims by all team members.
- For the North Channel, the Irish Long Distance Swimming Association requires a ratified 6-hour open water swim by solo swimmers in water 13°C or below or a ratified 8-hour swim in 15°C below within 9 months or less from the date of their North Channel slot or proof of completion in a recognised channel swim in water 13°C or below for a period considered by the ILDSA to be an acceptable alternative within the previous 9 months of the date of their North Channel slot.
- Duty Of Care At Start & Finish Of The North Channel
- Dangers, Risks: Who's Responsible In The Open Water?
- Nick Adams On Dealing With Little People
- Channel Swimming Association, A Step-by-Step Guide
- Channel Swimming & Piloting Federation
- Dwight Crum Pier-to-Pier Swim
- English Channel Swimmer Died One Mile From Land
- Rottnest Channel Swim
- NYC Swim
- Great Chesapeake Bay Swim
- Solo Swims
- Trial Before The Fire