The Royal Life Saving Society UK (RLSS UK) and British Triathlon have appointed Jenny Vincent as National Open Water Development Manager as part of plans for the promotion and safe development of the sport.

The organisations formed a partnership in March to promote open water swimming while developing the sport’s infrastructure to ensure the safety and enjoyment of participants.

Open water swimming is a rapidly growing sport with participation increasing year on year. Approximately 40 per cent of British Triathlon permitted events include an open water swim and 90 per cent of Triathlon England affiliated clubs offer open water swimming training. A number of open water swimming events also permit with British Triathlon. Consistent operating standards are vital to ensuring the safety of swim sites as demand for the sport continues to grow.

Initially a three-year project, the new position of National Open Water Development Manager is essential towards creating a joint strategy driving the development of open water swimming.

The unique partnership between RLSS UK and British Triathlon aims to make the open water swimming environment as safe as possible and to ensure that both swimmers and triathletes enjoy their open water swimming experience. Plans include improving training opportunities and resources for organisers of open water events and increasing the number of qualified open water lifeguards.

Jack Buckner, Chief Executive of British Triathlon, said: “Open water swimming is an integral part of triathlon and the growing number of participants and venues offering open water swimming means there has never been a better time for this work. Jenny’s appointment is a fantastic opportunity to reduce one of the main barriers to triathlon and we are really looking forward to working alongside the Royal Life Saving Society UK to ensure our new strategy and partnership is a success.”

Adrian Lole, Technical Director at the Royal Life Saving Society UK, said: “The growth of open water swimming has created an enormous demand for quality assured facilities. We’re delighted to welcome Jenny to the team. Her new role is critical to the development of safer sites and therefore safer participation in the sport.”

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