With Swimrun being a relatively new sport in Australia and many swimrunners only jumping on the swimrun bandwagon over the past few years, we commonly get questions about what the sport is and about tips and tricks you can use to race more efficiently.
Here are the most common FAQs so you can have a place to reference if you’re ever unsure about anything swimrun-related.
Is a swimrun event just one swim followed by one run?
No, swimrun events consist of multiple swim legs and multiple run legs, with Swimrun Australia’s shortest race consisting of 5 legs and longest race consisting of 23 legs.
What gear do I need for a swimrun?
Shoes, swimsuit, whistle, race vest and a swim cap are all compulsory pieces of equipment for all our Swimrun Australia events (race vest & swim cap provided).
Many swimrunners also like to use a pull buoy, hand paddles, wetsuit or calf socks, however, all this equipment is optional and completely up to you. Just remember when choosing what equipment you want to use, you must carry it throughout the whole race.
Can I race swimrun competitively or is it just for fun?
At Swimrun Australia we cater for all abilities from those who want to race competitively and aspire to one day compete in the ÖTILLÖ, The Swimrun World Championships to those who are just after a good time with mates.
What’s the choice of swimrun distances?
Distances differ from event to event, unlike triathlon or Ironman racing the sport of swimrun doesn’t have standardised race distances.
At Swimrun Australia we have four race distance categories;
- Swimrun Mini: 1-4km
- Swimrun Sprint: 5-9km
- Swimrun Short: 10-14km
- Swimrun Long: 15-24km
To find out more about our distances, read our race distances explained article on the resource page.
What locations can enjoy swimrun events at?
If you are after a swimrun event to take you international there are plenty of events across Europe, the USA, and the United Kingdom, and more.
How fit do I need to be?
Swimrun is designed to be achievable for everyone which is why we have a wide range of distances to choose from.
Whilst the Long race distance at all our events can be challenging, the beauty of it is that it’s broken up into smaller, more manageable legs.
If the Long race is too far for you right now, most Swimrun Australia events have a Mini, Sprint and Short option too, so you can experience the sport of swimrun at your own pace.
Despite this, we still recommend giving yourself at least 6-8 weeks to train for one of our swimrun events from a good base level of fitness.
Can I race by myself?
When the sport of swimrun was originally founded in 2002, it was traditionally raced in teams of two.
As the sport has evolved over the years, we have made changes to our rules allowing you to race in all swimrun races by yourself.
Although, the Australian Swimrun Championship can only be contested in teams.
Solo or team?
Depending on the distance you choose our Swimrun Australia events can be raced solo or in a team of two.
Our Mini and Sprint distances can only be raced solo but our Short and Long course distances can be raced either solo or in a team.
If you are competing in a team you must complete all swim and run legs together while staying no more than 10 metres apart. If you find it hard to stay together, especially during the swim legs, some teams like to attach a tether to make it easier to stay closer and as an added motivator.
How many people are in a swimrun team?
Teams consist of two people. When racing in a team, you have to race with your partner from start to finish completing all the swim and run legs together and being no further than 10 metres apart at any time.
Team categories include Male, Female and Mixed (1 x Male and 1 x Female).
Can teams alternate legs in a relay format?
No, teams must race together for the entire race, with both members of the team completing all the legs together.
What if my partner can’t continue or gets injured during the race?
If your partner gets injured throughout the race or cannot continue for other circumstances, you as a partner must assist them to safety, getting them to help from one of our event crew and then cease racing. Because you have entered the event as a team, you cannot continue without a partner.
Can I race without equipment?
This is almost a trick question. The answer is yes and no.
In Swimrun Australia events you must race with the compulsory gear as stipulated in our race rules, which is a swimsuit, swim cap, race vest and whistle.
Any other equipment such as hand paddles, pull buoy, goggles, wetsuits, calf socks and tethers are all optional and at the participant’s discretion.
Can I wear fins during the swim legs?
Unfortunately, swim fins cannot be worn in any Swimrun Australia event.
Do you swim in shoes during swim run events?
Your shoes must be worn at all times throughout both swim and run legs.
Because there are no transitions throughout the swimrun you cannot take your shoes off for the swim leg and put them back on for the run leg.
Do you have to wear a swim cap during run legs?
No, the swim cap can be removed during the runs as long as it is secured and worn again in the next swim.
Where do I store my whistle throughout the race?
Your whistle can be stored almost anywhere: in your swimwear pockets, tucked into your wetsuit or swimsuit or placed into a belt if you choose to wear one.
Will my equipment be checked before the race?
Yes. Random spot checks will be conducted to check equipment before the race.
Placegetters will be asked to present their equipment for confirmation at the finish.
Are there cut-off times? What if I don’t make it?
For the safety of both our participants and volunteers, there are cut-off times for our Short and Long races.
Our cut-off times are generous and differ between events so please check the cut-off times for your race.
If you do not make a cut-off point on the course, you will either be redirected to the Short race course (if available) or be retired from the race and assisted back to the event hub/finish line.
Contact us before the race If you are worried about making the cut-off times.