Swim Ratification

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The purpose of the World Open Water Swimming Association is to support and promote open water swimmers in their pursuit of individual and team goals in the open water swimming world.

Solo swimmers and relays (up to 6 individual swimmers per relay) who wish to receive a ratification from the World Open Water Swimming Association must follow the WOWSA Rules & Regulations as listed here: WOWSA Rules & Regulations

WOWSA Ratification Process

Once you purchase Swim Ratification, you will be directed to a page with two forms. If you have completed your swim, please only fill out the Post-Swim Ratification Form. If you are in the planning stage of your swim, please fill out the Pre-Swim Planning Form and return to this page after your swim to complete the Post-Swim Ratification Form.

1. Pre-Swim Planning Form (fill out before your swim)

If you’re in the planning stage, we will review, make recommendations on your safety plan, your swim plan, and advise on requisite documentation that will be needed to ratify your swim

2. Post-Swim Ratification Form (fill out after your swim) Once you’ve completed your attempt, submit your post-swim ratification form in order to receive an official certificate and blog post commemorating your attempt and/or achievement

Swim Series Ratification

If your swim is part of a series (Triple Crown, Oceans Seven, or any multi-swim series), first submit each swim individually for ratification. In the final post-swim ratification form in the series, please select YES to the question, this is the final swim in the series, and indicate the series for which you would like ratification.


WOWSA supports everyone who ventures beyond the shore, no matter their speed, walk of life, conditions, circumstances or equipment they use. The types of swims that are supported, reviewed and ratified by WOWSA include the following:

  • Traditional open water swims
  • Traditional marathon swims
  • Traditional channel swims
  • Assisted open water swims with any kind of equipment (e.g., wetsuits, fins, hand paddles, neoprene caps, tow floats, MP3 players or audio equipment, flotation devices, snorkels), Garmin watches or navigational gear).
  • Downstream swims.
  • Whirlpool swims.
  • Circumnavigation swims.
  • Stage swims.
  • Transoceanic swims.
  • Non-escorted swims.
  • Adventure and wild swims.
  • High-altitude swims.
  • Cold water swims with or without equipment
  • Traditional relays
  • Assisted relays
  • Mass participation races
  • Professional marathon races
  • Charity swims or relays
  • Extreme or expedition swims
  • Dark or night swims
  • Perimeter swims
  • Tandem swims or group tandem swims
  • Low altitude swim
  • Contiguous or non-contiguous stage swim
  • Non-freestyle swim (e.g., butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, individual medley, sidestroke or combat stroke)

These swims can be held in any open body of water: oceans, seas, bays, rivers, fjords, estuaries, lochs, lakes, rowing basins, lidos, dams, reservoirs, canals, channels, coves, firths, sounds, straits, or harbors.


Q: Do I need to submit a pre-swim plan to be considered for official ratification?

A: No, while we’d prefer to be helpful early in the planning process, if you’d already done a remarkable swim and want official credit, simply fill out the post-swim ratification form

Q: What if my attempt does not go according to plan?

A: WOWSA believes unsuccessful or DNF (Did Not Finish) attempts are important to document and study in order for the next swimmer or next attempt to learn how to succeed. WOWSA will recognize these attempts with a special designation, including the following scenarios:

Swim was modified en route and differed from the original plan / course due to unforeseen circumstances, safety considerations, or inclement weather or water conditions as long as the differences are described and thoroughly documented in the final submission. Swim resulted in a DNF (Did Not Finish) as long as the duration and distance in the water is described and thoroughly documented in the final submission Q: How long will it take for my swim to be ratified?

A: We do our best to reply to your submission within 48 hours

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