Open Water Swim Clinics

Sat June 18 - Sat July 30 Santa Cruz, CA 95060 US Directions
Clinic Website

Additional clinic information can be found at

Cowell Beach
21 Municipal Wharf
Santa Cruz, CA US 95060

These clinics are designed to give every swimmer, whether novice or experienced, an opportunity to develop new skills, improve skill and stamina, and gain new experiences in open water.

You'll have an opportunity to swim the course for Tri Santa Cruz, the Dip and Dash Aquathlon, and other local event venues and longer course events, or just improve your open water skills and get more comfortable in the water.

Focus is on increasing comfort with gear, swimming skills and techniques including sighting for course accuracy, getting in and out of your wetsuit, drafting, entering and exiting the water. Good for all levels of swimmers or triathletes looking to improve their swims. Its a great way to meet new training partners!


Invest in yourself and improve your open water swimming skills for a safer and more rewarding swim experience. 

We want you to be prepared too and we want open water swimming to be something you embrace versus something you fear if you are a new swimmer . These clinics are good for you if: 

  • You're a good swimmer but don't have open water experience or you haven't been in the water for awhile,.
  • You're just rusty on your OWS and racing skills
  • You're looking for tips and pointers to improve your stroke and technique in open water.
  • Swimmers who are new to open water swimming in lakes or ocean venues.
  • New triathletes who are trying out a new sport even if you're a good pool swimmer.
  • Triathletes and swimmers who haven't been in the water for awhile.
  • Open water swimmers looking to improve skills and gain more comfort in the water.

We are segmenting our clinics into skill levels for beginner, intermediate and advanced depending on your open water skills and comfort level.  However, swimmers of all abilities are welcome to any of the clinics but the first one is specifically targeted to new open water swimmers.  If you've got more experience and just want to swim you are more than welcome - just be prepared to share your experience and expertise with the newer swimmers!

Clinics are starting in June this year with one clinic in June and two in July. 

Clinic #1 - Beginning or new to open water swimmers - June 18 (Saturday)

We will start earlier in the season, on June 18, with an introduction to open water swimming for people who have no or limited experience with swimming in open water.  This clinic will talk about gear, water and swim conditions, gaining a comfort level in open water, and having an experience with the basics of entry, exit, sighting, breathing, etc.   No experience in open water or ocean is necessary to participate but you should be able to swim 100 yards with a focus on freestyle. Starting earlier will give you an opportunity to fully develop your open water skills before you get to your first starting line of the year.  You'll meet new swim buddies, have opportunities to seek out additional coaching and open water workouts.  You'll also be more comfortable in subsequent clinics. This clinic will be limited to only 25 participants to enhance smaller group coaching.

Clinic #2 - Intermediate skills to make you more comfortable in open water and groups - July 16 (Saturday)

This clinic is a continuation of the beginning clinic and will focus on intermediate skills.  This is for people who have experience in open water but you're not quite comfortable and need to improve your skills, you've not been in the water for awhile, or you started with the May clinic and want to continue improving your swim, and swim some longer distances away from the shoreline.   This is an opportunity to improve your skills for sighting, group swimming and drafting, race entry and exit, fine tuning for your stroke and gear.

Clinic #3 - Advanced topics, race strategy and fine tuning skills - July 30 (Saturday)

This clinic is for swimmers who are continuing from the first two clinics, or swimmers/triathletes who are comfortable in the water but want some fine tuning of your stroke and breathing, swimming in groups, and developing race strategy and skills.  There will be opportunities to do longer swims at this session and some simulated racing.

You can select to register for only one, two or all three clinics.  Clinics are $25 each.  Register for more than one clinic in the same transaction by checking multiple boxes during registration.

All clinics are USA Triathlon sanctioned clinics and a one-day license or annual membership is required for participation. Because these clinic are taught by USA Triathlon certified coaches you only need to purchase one USAT one-day membership ($15) for all three clinics if you are not already a member. Additionally, the one day membership can be deducted from a future purchase of an annual membership in 2022.  If you are already an annual member you will not need to pay for the additional one day membership license.

All sessions will meet at Cowell Beach in Santa Cruz, unless otherwise noted.  You will receive specific email instructions and directions as well as gear lists before each clinic session.

COVID-19 Precautions

We will adhere to the guidelines established by USA Triathlon and the Santa Cruz County Health Department to ensure that this event is safe for participants including sanitation and distancing guidelines at all times during the clinic based on the local requirements on each clinic date, including mask wearing, sanitizing,  food service, contactless registration, etc. 

As part of USA Triathlon's Safe Return to Racing program we will be asking each participant to complete the health questionnaire prior to attending the clinic.  You can review the questionnaire and download it below.  We will only be collecting the form that is filled out at the time of the clinic but you should use your best judgement in monitoring your health for 10 - 14 days prior to the clinic sessions.

In order to execute contactless registration all registration for the clinics is online and in advance.  There will not be any registration on clinic days.

Click the icon below to download the attached PDF.

Clinic Contact Info

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