How to sight and breathe in open water

Olympic open-water swimmer Keri-anne Payne explains how to incorporate your sighting into your breathing so you waste less energy


1. Keep your head low to remain as streamlined as possible through the water. As you bring your arm through to complete the stroke, keep that as low as you can, too.

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2. Look up to sight as your arm is going back in to the water. Lift your head just enough to focus on the buoy or other focus point ahead, and keep your arm and elbow as low as possible to again remain streamlined.

3. After you’ve located the buoy, in one complete movement turn to the side to breathe. Remember to only breathe in when you turn to the side. Breathe out under the water.

Extended sight

1.  If you’re struggling to locate the buoy or focus point, do a water-polo stroke whereby you look ahead for one complete arm stroke.

5. Do not do this often, though, as it wastes energy and can hurt your back.

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Watch Keri-anne demonstrating the perfect technique below

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