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Jaimie Monahan

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Jaimie Monahan, inductee (Honor Swimmer) of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, Class of 2018
Jaimie Monahan, inductee (Honor Swimmer) of the Ice Swimming Hall of Fame, Class of 2019
Jaimie Monahan's Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming certificate
Jaimie Monahan in Manhattan under panoramic views, blue skies, silvery skyline and familiar waters
Jaimie Monahan won the 2017 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, part of the WOWSA Awards, an annual recognition of outstanding men, women, performances and offerings around the globe sponsored by the World Open Water Swimming Association
Jaimie Monahan before the 2017 Rose Pitonof Swim imaging what Rose Pitonof might have done in 1911
Jaimie Monahan was nominated for the 2016 WOWSA Awards, a recognition of outstanding men, women, performances and offerings around the globe sponsored by the World Open Water Swimming Association and selected as the 2016 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year
Jaimie Monahan stepping into Paradise Harbour in Antarctica in 2015. Photo by Arik Thormahlen
Jaimie Monahan stepping into Paradise Harbour in Antarctica in 2015. Photo by Arik Thormahlen
Jaimie Monahan, Triple Crowner and winter swimmer
First International Vampire Swims in Cork, Ireland envisioned by Jaimie Monahan, Greg O’Connor, and Phil White
Jaimie Monahan is listed in the 2019 Guinness World Record book

Jaimie Monahan (born 11 August 1979) is a 41-year-old American winter swimmer, ice swimmer, marathon swimmer and Ice Ironwoman born in New York City. She is a a two time Guinness World Records holder, inductee of the International Marathon Swimming and Ice Swimming Hall of Fame and has enjoyed open water swimming everywhere from Antarctica to the Arctic Circle. She serves as a Marathon Swimming Mentor.

Honors

Open Water Swimming Career Highlights

Manhattan Island Circumnavigation Swims

Monahan has completed 29 45.9 km circumnavigation swims around Manhattan Island over her career as of 4 October 2020 in her Mannahatta Project:

Ice Miles

  • She has completed 9 Ice Miles over the course of her career until June 2018:
    • On 2 April 2016 in Reykjavík, Iceland in 3.70°C water, she swam 1.00 mile in 35 minutes 0 seconds in the Atlantic Ocean.
    • On 18 December 2016 in Tyumen, Russia in -0.03°C water (with a wind chill of -31.00°C), she swam 1.03 miles in 30 minutes 20 seconds in an ice pool in freshwater lake.
    • On 13 February 2017 in Aguelmame Sidi Ali Lake. Morocco in 4.90°C water (with a wind chill of -0.50°C), she swam 1.02 miles in 32 minutes 18 seconds in a freshwater mountain lake.
    • On 4 March 2017 in Mikkelvik Brygge, Karlsøy, Iceland in 2.37°C water (with a wind chill of -3.50°C), she swam 1.11 miles in 32 minutes 9 seconds in the sea.
    • On 9 March 2017 in M Street Beach, Boston, Massachusetts, USA in 4.63°C water, she swam 1.01 miles in 26 minutes 16 seconds in the Atlantic Ocean.
    • On 15 May 2017 in Tasman Lake on Aoraki / Mount Cook in New Zealand in 2.37°C water, she swam 1.14 miles in 26 minutes 44 seconds in a freshwater glacier lake.
    • On 2 July 2017 in Los Cauquenes Resort Beach on the Beagle Channel, Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina in 4.77°C water, she swam 1.13 miles in 29 minutes 5 seconds in the ocean.
    • On 6 March 2018 in Paradise Harbour, Antarctica in 0.57°C water, she swam 1.01 miles in 30 minutes 49 seconds in a saltwater harbor with icebergs and glaciers.
    • On 10 June 2018 in Ilulissat Harbour, Greenland in 2.43°C water, she swam 1.10 miles in 29 minutes 40 seconds in a sea harbor.

Winter Swimming

Ice Sevens

On 2 July 2017, Monahan completed the first documented Ice Sevens in history with the following Ice Miles:

1 in Europe on 2 April 2016 in Reykjavík, Iceland in 3.70°C water (3°C wind chill + 5.6°C air) in 35 minutes 0 seconds in the sea with 12 km/hr wind speed
2 in Asia (Ice Zero Mile) on 18 December 2016 in Tyumen, Russia in -0.03°C water (-31°C wind chill + air) in 30:20 in an ice pool cut into a frozen lake
3 in Africa on 13 February 2017 in Aguelmame Sidi Ali Lake, Morocco in 4.9°C water (-0.5°C wind chill + 3°C air) in 32:18 in a mountain lake with 14 km/hr wind speed
4 within Arctic Circle on 4 March 2017 in Mikkelvik Brygge, Karlsøy, Norway in 2.37°C water (-3.5°C air) in 32:09 in the sea with 4 km/hr wind speed
5 in North America on 9 March 2017 at M Street Beach, Boston, USA in 4.63°C water (6.1°C wind chill + 9°C air) in 26:16 in the sea with 20 km/hr wind speed
6 in Oceania on 15 May 2017 in Tasman Lake, Aoraki / Mount Cook, New Zealand in 2.37°C water (14°C air) in 26:44 in a glacier lake
7 in South America on 2 July 2017 in Ushuaia, Argentina in 4.76°C water (5.9°C air) in 29:05 in the Beagle Channel

2020 WOWSA Awards

She was nominated for the 2020 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year by the World Open Water Swimming Association with the following nomination: Jaimie Monahan barrels on swimming longer and colder, all with a wide smile and many words of heartfelt gratitude for her escort team. The 41-year-old from New York continues to be able to push herself further and further into the extreme, while always staying humble and ever adventurous. In a shortened 2020 swim season she modified her usual globetrotting schedule and swam closer to home. She completed an incredible total of 18 circumnavigation swims around Manhattan Island, including history's first Quadruple Manhattan Swim, a 184 km solo swim in 45 hours 24 minutes. She remains ready to help others, giving practical advice and inspirational messages to others, serving as one of the most accessible icons in the sport of marathon swimming, winter swimming and ice swimming. For completing twenty-nine 45.9 km circumnavigation swims around Manhattan Island over her career that has no sign of slowing, for pushing the limits with her local Mannahatta Project that complements her career of completing the Ice Sevens, 9 Ice Miles and dozens of marathon swims around the world, and for becoming the Queen of Manhattan despite a year of limited opportunities due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Jaimie Monahan is a worthy nominee for the 2020 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year.

2018 WOWSA Awards

She was nominated for the 2018 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year by the World Open Water Swimming Association with the following nomination: Jaimie Monahan was literally everywhere, doing everything, in the open water world during 2018. After a year in which she became the first person to complete the Ice Sevens Challenge under the rules of International Ice Swimming Association setting her first Guinness World Record, she completed the 15 km Cold Half Marathon Swim in Hong Kong, a 18.5 km New York Bay swim, and the 45.9 km 20 Bridges Manhattan Island Swim in New York at the end of a 16-day global tour where she completed 6 marathon swims in South America (Colombia in 32°C water), Oceania (Australia in 15°C water), Asia (Singapore in 29°C water), Africa (Egypt in 30°C water), Europe (Switzerland to France in 20°C water) to set her second Guinness World Record. She also took the time to complete 2 Ice Miles in Paradise Harbour in Antarctica (in 0.57°C water) and Ilulissat Harbour in Greenland (in 2.43°C water) and help administer the Lake Geneva Swimming Association. For her impressive versatility in competing in ice swims and warm-water marathons, for balancing a full-time job with a non-stop globetrotting swimming itinerary, and for her efforts as a charismatic ambassador for open water swimming in all forms, Jaimie Monahan of the USA is a worthy nominee for the 2018 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year.

2017 WOWSA Awards

She was nominated for the 2017 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year by the World Open Water Swimming Association:

1. Katherine Batts (Great Britain)
2. Dr. Caroline Block (USA)
3. Arianna Bridi (Italy)
4. Chloë McCardel (Australia)
5. Ana Marcela Cunha (Brazil)
6. Pat Gallant-Charette (USA)
7. Ludmila Maller (Russia)
8. Jaimie Monahan (USA)
9. Aurélie Muller (France)
10. Barbara Pozzobón (Italy)
11. Sarah Thomas (USA)
12. Julia Wittig (Germany)

Monahan was nominated for and was selected as the 2017 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year. Her nomination read: Jaimie Monahan seemed to be everywhere, doing everything, in the open water world in 2017. Her presence was ubiquitous around the globe, from cold to warm temperatures, short to long distances, calm to rough conditions. In addition to doing six major marathon swims (winning the 40 Bridges Double Manhattan Island 92 km swim with a new course record of 20 hours 12 minutes, pioneering the first recorded 64 km Lago Maggiore crossing in 24 hours 2 minutes, 40 km Lac Memphrémagog, 27 km Rose Pitonof Swim, 20 km Mercer Island Marathon Swim and a 4 km Strait of Magellan crossing), the 38-year-old completed the world's first Ice Sevens Challenge under the International Ice Swimming Association – performing Ice Miles under 5°C in Morocco, Norway, Boston, New Zealand, and Argentina in addition to being a top-ranked swimmer on the International Winter Swimming Association World Cup circuit with races in Latvia, Russia, China, and England. For her impressive versatility in competing in ice swims and warm-water marathons, for balancing a full-time job with a non-stop globetrotting swimming itinerary, and for her efforts as a charismatic ambassador for open water swimming in all forms, Jaimie Monahan is a worthy nominee for the 2017 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year.

2016 WOWSA Awards

Monahan was nominated for and was selected as the 2016 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year. Her nomination read: "Jaimie Monahan seemed ubiquitous around the globe, certainly among the world's most prolific swimmers. In addition to winning the International Winter Swimming Association's World Cup and competing in Latvia, Russia, United Kingdom, China, Sweden, and Estonia, she completed marathon swims around Manhattan Island, across Italy's Lake Como, across Switzerland's Lake Geneva, in the Rose Pitonof Swim, across New York's Lake George, around Italy's Lago d'Orta, around New Jersey's Absecon Island, down the Hudson River, and in Bolivia's Lake Titicaca. She also did an Ice Mile in Iceland and serves as the President of the Lake Geneva Swimming Association despite leading a professional services firm in New York. For her impressive versatility in competing in ice-water sprints and warm-water marathons, for balancing a full-time job and a globetrotting swimming itinerary, and for her relentlessly genuine efforts to serve as a charismatic ambassador for marathon swimming and winter swimming, Jaimie Monahan is a worthy nominee for the 2016 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year."

Jaimie Monahan Award

Monahan is the namesake for the Jaimie Monahan Award given by the Lake Geneva Swimming Association for its most exceptional swim of the year.

International Ice Swimming Championship

Monahan finished first (18:23.52) in her age group (35-39) at the 2015 inaugural 1000m International Ice Swimming Championship in Lake Semenovskoe in Murmansk, Russia in 0.8ºC under the auspices of the International Ice Swimming Association.

USWSA National Championships

Monahan won the 2016 United States Winter Swimming Association National Championships in both the women's 25 breaststroke and 50 breaststroke on 30 January in New York City in 1.2°C (34.3°F) water of the La Marina venue in the Hudson River.

2015 Year

Monahan completed the following swims in 2015:

  • Length of Lake Geneva 69 km (42.8 miles) in 32 hours, 52 minutes. Second woman, second overall, and first in 16 years to complete this swim.
  • END-WET Swim, Red River, North Dakota. 36 miles (58 km) in 11 hours 56 minutes.
  • Rose Pitonof Swim, New York City. 17 miles (27.3 km) in 5 hours 36 minutes.
  • Swam at 0°C in Antarctica and the Arctic Circle in the same week
  • Won her age group at the inaugural 1 km Ice Swimming World Championships in Murmansk, Russia
  • Represented the USA at swim events in China, Bermuda, Argentina, Russia, Switzerland, Latvia, and Morocco

2017 Ice Swimming Aqua Sphere World Championships



Monahan competed in multiple races at the 2017 Ice Swimming Aqua Sphere World Championships sanctioned by the International Ice Swimming Association, including the ice kilometer race in Burghausen, Germany.

2017 World's 50 Most Adventurous Open Water Women

Monahan was named to the 2017 World's 50 Most Adventurous Open Water Women by the World Open Water Swimming Association. The women are listed below, alphabetically by last name:

1. Patti Bauernfeind, marathon/channel/relay swimmer from the USA
2. Carina Bruwer, marathon/channel/charity event swimmer from South Africa
3. Charlotte Brynn, marathon/channel/ice swimmer and coach from New Zealand/USA
4. Jessie Campbell, ice/winter swimmer from Great Britain
5. Kimberley Chambers, marathon/channel/extreme/cross-border swimmer from New Zealand/USA
6. Devon Clifford, marathon/open water swimmer from the USA
7. Jackie Cobell, channel/extreme/ice swimmer from Great Britain
8. Lorna Cochran, open water swimmer from South Africa
9. Olive Conroy, ice/winter swimmer from Ireland
10. Anna DeLozier, ice/winter swimmer from the USA
11. Beth French, channel swimmer from Great Britain
12. Elizabeth Fry, marathon/channel swimmer and event organizer from USA
13. Pat Gallant-Charette, channel/marathon swimmer from the USA
14. Pilar Geijo, professional marathon swimmer from Argentina
15. Ines Hahn, ice/winter/professional marathon swimmer from Germany
16. Jessi Harewicz, marathon/channel swimmer from Canada
17. Mariel Hawley Dávila, marathon/channel/cross-border swimmer from Mexico
18. Bárbara Hernández Huerta, winter/extreme swimmer from Chile
19. Bridgette Hobart, event organizer and marathon/channel swimmer from the USA
20. Elaine Howley, marathon/charity/ice swimmer and writer from the USA
21. Linda Kaiser, channel swimmer, advisor and administrator from the USA
22. Lori King, marathon/channel swimmer from the USA
23. Tita Llorens, marathon/channel swimmer from Spain
24. Marcy MacDonald, DPM, marathon/channel swimmer from the USA
25. Elina Makïnen, ice/winter swimmer from Finland
26. Angela Maurer, professional marathon swimmer and Olympian from Germany
27. Chloë McCardel, marathon/channel swimmer and coach from Australia
28. Tiffany McQueen, ocean/marathon swimmer from the USA
29. Sally Minty-Gravett, marathon/channel swimmer and coach from Great Britain (Jersey)
30. Jaimie Monahan, ice/winter/marathon/channel swimmer from the USA
31. Nuala Moore, marathon/ice swimmer, second, author and lecturer from Ireland
32. Victoria Mori, ice/winter/professional marathon swimmer from Argentina
33. Tina Neill, marathon/channel/backstroker/extreme relay swimmer from the USA
34. Anna-Carin Nordin, Oceans Seven/ice swimmer from Sweden
35. Renata Nováková, ice/winter swimmer from the Czech Republic
36. Magda Okurková, ice/winter swimmer from the Czech Republic
37. Penny Palfrey, channel/marathon/extreme swimmer from Australia
38. Ranie Pearce, marathon/channel swimmer from the USA
39. Cheryl Reinke, marathon swimmer from the USA
40. Charlotte Samuels, marathon/channel swimmer from the USA
41. Susan Simmons, marathon swimmer with Multiple Sclerosis from Canada
42. Kate Steels-Fryatt, polar ice miler and ice/winter swimmer from Great Britain
43. Sarah Thomas, marathon/extreme swimmer from the USA
44. Nora Toledano Cadena, marathon/channel/cross-border swimmer from Mexico
45. Natalie du Toit, professional marathon swimmer and Olympian from South Africa
46. Wendy Trehiou, marathon/channel swimmer from Great Britain (Jersey)
47. Wendy Van De Sompele, marathon swimmer and administrator from the USA
48. Samantha Whelpton, winter/ice swimmer from South Africa
49. Sabrina Wiedmer, ice/winter/marathon/channel swimmer from Switzerland
50. Julia Wittig, ice/winter swimmer from Germany

Swimming with Shivers

She wrote a story for Swimming With Shivers, a book co-authored by Claire Bunker-Fellingham and Gary Standen about true stories from, by and about open water swimmers doing cold water swimming, winter swimming, and ice swimming. The stories in Swimming with Shivers are from, by and about Carl Atkinson, Deborah Banks, Ram Barkai, Jo Barkwith, Andy Bennett, Katie Blair, Sylvia Bland, Gideon Bright, Claire Bunker-Fellingham, Judith Charman, Sze-Ming Cheung, Chillswim, Tracy Clark, David Coleman, Phil Coombe, Talbott Crowell, Ned Denison, Nick Dorey, Dryrobe, Ros Edmonds, Rory Fitzgerald, Daniel Gilmore, Will Glendinning, Gone Swimming, Rebecca Goodson, Julie Gregory, Shaun Hales, Happy Cold Swimming, Louise Hazelton, Colin Hill, Elaine Howley, International Ice Swimming Association, Roni Jelgavas, Mark Johansen, Jody Jones, Ele Jump, Ger Kennedy, Ivan Lewis, Julie Lloyd, Jules McRobbie, Sally Minty-Gravett MBE, Steven Munatones, Diane Murphy Weaver, Jim Nyberg, Barry O'Connor, Outdoor Swimmer, Simon Parkin, Lisa Peake, Kevin Proctor, Jane Saycet, Val Smith, Fergal Somerville, Jodi Songhurst, Gary Standen, Lucy Stansfield, Kate Steels-Fryatt, Swimming With Smiles Book, Tidal Wave Fitness, Jonty Warneken, Karen Weir, Haydn Welch, Samantha Whelpton, Emily Whittaker, and Nicola Wood.

Ted Talks


Do something everyday that scares you by Jaimie Monahan at TEDxAkita International University in Japan

Marathon Swim Stories

She appeared with Shannon House Keegan on Marathon Swim Stories.

External links