OWS Series FAQs

Do I need a qualifying time?

No, you do not need any qualifying time to enter any of the Open Water Swimming Series events.

Are there any age restrictions on the events?

Yes, they are as follows:

  • Splash & Dash: 8yrs to 13yrs at day of competition
  • 500m Minimum age: 9yrs of age at day of competition
  • 1.25km Minimum age: 11yrs of age as at day of competition
  • 2.5km – 5km Minimum age: 12yrs of age as at day of competition
  • 10km Minimum age: 14yrs of age as at day of competition*
  • All swimmers aged 9 and 10 years must have a chaperone swimmer. See Chaperone Policy here.
  • There are no maximum age limits on any events.

*13-year-olds looking to undertake a qualifying swim for a solo Rottnest Channel Swim crossing are asked to contact Swimming WA direct on  (08) 9328 4599.

Do I need to be a Swimming WA Member to take part?

Yes you will, however, this can easily be done! If you plan to only participate in the Open Water Swimming Series, and not become a member of an Affiliated Swimming WA Club, then you will join as a Leisure Swim Member which is just $38.00 for the season. Register here.

Can I enter on the day?

We strongly suggest you enter before the respective cut off days for each event. However, late entries can be taken on the day. Late registrations will run from 6:30am – 7:15am and include a late entry fee. This time will be strictly adhered to as it is a serious water safety issue.

*Please note – if an event is sold out beforehand there will be no late registrations taken on the day.

When will I receive my race briefing?

Every swimmer will receive an eticket via email containing event information.  For further event day logistics please refer to the event page.  Should you not receive your eticket in the week prior to your event please call the Swimming WA office.

There will also be an on beach race briefing immediately prior to your swim, which you should attend to be informed of any changes or additional information due to conditions of the day.

Can I change the distance I have registered for?

Changes to race distances can be made online up to one day before the event.

Step 1. Click here

Step 2. Enter email that was used to register for swim

Step 3. An email with links to each of your registered events for the season will be sent to you.

Step 4. Select the event you wish to change the distance and click the “Access” link.

Step 5. Scroll down to the Event heading and click the green “Edit” button.

Step 6. Select your desired distance and click the green “Continue” button and follow the prompts through to the end.

Note that there is $2 charge to make alterations so we recommend only changing when you are sure of your choice.

When will results be published?

They will be published in the results section of this website and will be live throughout the race.

What swimsuits am I allowed to wear?

If you wish to use your time to qualify for national competition and/or be eligible for points towards the OWS Series leaderboard, then you must adhere to Swimming Australia’s (SAL) Open Water By-Law 7 regarding swimwear. This By-Law is available within the full Swimsuit guidelines found her

There are no restrictions on swimwear for those not looking for a nationally recognised qualifying time and/or those who are not vying for the overall Leaderboard championship. Continuing from last year, people wearing wetsuits will be eligible for recognition medals if they finish in the top three place-getters in their age group at any event (excepting the WA Open Water State Championships).

Any exposed zips on wetsuits are required to be covered to prevent any safety breaches during the swim. If they are not covered, the participant may be asked to change into an alternate swimsuit prior to entering the water.

Watches (including GPS devices) and jewellery (including rings) are not permitted at any time. Please leave these at home, or safely with friends or family.

Where can I find maps outlining the course and site layout?

Course maps can be found on the individual events pages of this website.

Can I swim in multiple events in the one round?

If you register for multiple events, you are able to swim each event.  You may also chaperone in the Splash & Dash and 500m events before swimming in the main distance.  Be aware that the Splash & Dash and 500m swims are the only distances that occur before the main events. 1.25km – 10km swimmers will all be in the water at the same time through staggered waves.

How is the series winner determined?

The series winner will be determined through the OWS Scoring System. Each round a participant swims will see them accumulate more points to their series tally.

Points are awarded to the first eight (8) swimmers in each category, from eight points for 1st Place to one point for 8th place.

These points are then multiplied by the distance swum.  For example, the winner of the 10km event would get 80 points compared to the winner of the 2.5km event who would receive 20 points.

To be eligible, swimmers must complete six Swimming WA events, with at least one Round being regional. (Busselton, Harvey or Bunbury)

When will medals be presented?

Medals will be presented as soon as a sufficient amount of competitors from the relevant event have finished.

How will I be notified if an event is cancelled?

If an event is cancelled before the day, an email and SMS will be sent to the account nominated when you register.

All communication relating to the cancellation of events will also be communicated via Swimming WA’s Social Media Channels; Facebook and Twitter as well.

What is the refund policy?

There are no refunds given, in the case of an event being cancelled the next appropriate event will be offered as compensation.

Am I allowed a paddler?

Paddlers will be permitted for the 10km events.

Who is the event organiser and the key officials?

Swimming WA is the event organiser and the Meet Director for each event will be Swimming WA’s OWS Coordinator.

Each round will have a nominated Chief Referee who is responsible for ensuring the rules & conditions of the of the competition are met.

Will medical personnel be on-site at the venue?

A water safety first aid tent with qualified personnel will be set up on the beach from the time registrations open until after all races are completed. Please see individual event listings for specific water safety providers.

What water safety has Swimming WA put in place for each event?

Swimming WA takes very seriously the safety of its participants and has put in place a comprehensive risk mitigation strategy to deal with all safety issues at our open water events.

Swimming WA has engaged Surf Life Saving WA as our Water Safety provider and manager for the entire series.

Swimming WA has also been working closely with State Government Departments and other water safety providers to ensure the necessary support and risk mitigation strategies are in place to deliver the safest possible environment at all open water events.

Swimming WA constantly reviews the conditions and environment at each open water venue with our water safety provider in the lead up to each event. If any of the risk factors go beyond our agreed indicators, an event will be cancelled.

Should an event need to be cancelled, Swimming WA will provide all competitors with an opportunity to compete in another event of their choice throughout the season and the cancelled event will count as a completed event towards state championships qualification.

Where can I find out the expected weather conditions of the race?

A weather forecast complete with tides and winds will be emailed to you as part of your participant brief on the Friday prior to the event. For updated information please check Bureau of Meteorology

For further information, please contact Swimming WA on 9328 4599.