Badges Of Honour In Open Water Swimming

Badges Of Honour In Open Water Swimming

There are certain Badges of Honour among open water swimmers, triathletes, surfers, and other marine sports enthusiasts.

Badges of Honour are simple descriptions of profound and unique personal experiences that are intimately shared among millions of open water swimmers and triathletes.

The ten most common Badges of Honour are listed below.

Quite often, these descriptions are usually followed by elaborate explanations of the effects and conditions that the swimmer or triathlete experienced.

1. I got stung.
2. I saw a shark.
3. I got hypothermia.
4. I got swum over at the buoys.
5. I got caught in the tides.
6. I saw dolphins.
7. I heard whales.
8. I got massive chafing.
9. I got stuck against the currents.
10. I got an ice cream headache.

I Got Stung is a common Badges of Honour, especially among open water swimmers who are always fully exposed to the elements. Like acceptance into a fraternity or sorority, the phrase “I Got Stung” places an athlete into a special, unique club. Especially among the entire homo sapien species, I Got Stung is – frankly and fortunately – a rare experience.

No one can truly understand the feeling of being stung by the venomous barbs on the tentacles of a jellyfish…until or unless they feel it themselves.

“I got bitten” is a corollary of I got stung and can refer to small insect bites experienced while swimming in an estuary or bay to small, flesh-eating nibbles of the swimmer’s skin by fish in the oceans.

In an attempt to capture a snapshot of the number, type and location of jellyfish stings experienced by open water swimmers worldwide, visit to input your personal information.

Photo shows Phil Cutti, who has a high tolerance to pain, swimming towards the Farallon Islands.

Copyright © 2013 by World Open Water Swimming Association
Steven Munatones