Love the Open Water

The Open Water Swim Academy (OWSA) shares and promotes the camaraderie, fun, exhilaration and joy of open water swimming. Led by Dan Simonelli, an experienced and awarded marathon swimmer, OWSA provides comprehensive coaching and mentoring to swimmers, both competitive and non-competitive, of all ages and skill levels interested in the challenge of open water swimming.


The OWSA coaching and mentoring program focuses on TEMP, which prepares swimmers for the Technical, Environmental, Mental and Physical challenges of open water swimming.


Uniting the swimming community, OWSA organises and hosts Swim Across America benefit swims to raise money for life saving cancer research and clinical trials.


OWSA provides support, including kayaking, crewing and observation, for swimmers attempting Catalina Channel, Santa Barbara Channel or other major open water swims.

Latest News

Pan-American Colibrí Swim

Pan-American Colibrí Swim

Dan Simonelli is one of twelve swimmers who will participate in the Pan-American Colibrí Swim, a 10 km cross-border swim from California to Tijuana, Mexico, on 5 May 2017. While the other swimmers come from South Africa and Israel, Dan is the only ‘local’ swimmer. Talking to the Daily News of Open Water Swimming, Dan explains the course and history ...

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Swim Preparation

Swim Preparation

Swimming is an amazing sport. It challenges individuals to overcome obstacles, set short-term and long-term goals, be disciplined, develop time management skills, learn values of hard work and determination, and demonstrate the courage it takes to push your body to its limits. A topic consistently discussed in the sport of swimming is pool swimming. A step ...

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Open Water

Open Water

Just a few years ago, Dan Simonelli was about 40 pounds overweight and not happy about it. “I was not particularly unhealthy per se — I don’t smoke or drink — but I wasn’t that active,” Simonelli recalls. It was a big change from his teens and 20s, when he’d been a swimmer, served in ...

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Our Swimmers

  • – Chloë McCardel

    “Dan Simonelli gives so much to the sport of open water swimming. He coaches, support crews and mentors swimmers of all ages and abilities from all across the world. He also volunteers his time on federations, boards, committees and supports fundraising events for Swim Across America.”

    – Chloë McCardel
  • – Tim Kosiba

    “If you’re thinking about attempting a major swim, whether it be Catalina Channel, Molokai, English Channel, Santa Barbara Channel, etc., Dan Simonelli is the best support crew. He’s the man to get the job done!”

    – Tim Kosiba
  • – Amy McVeigh

    “Thank you for a spectacular morning swim at La Jolla Cove, Dan Simonelli. My kids had the best time and loved every minute of the swim. They cannot wait to get back out there!”

    – Amy McVeigh
  • – Audrey Schumm

    “Thank you to Dan Simonelli for taking me out to explore La Jolla Cove. Being a new swimmer, Dan took his time to go over safety tips and ensure I was comfortable at all times. There is no better way to work out than open water swimming and I encourage everyone to give it a try.”

    – Audrey Schumm
  • – Joseph Kim

    “Thanks for an awesome swim, Dan Simonelli. It was loads of fun and I enjoyed the cave exploring and shark watching – never saw one before! I appreciated all the insights about the land and water conditions as we swam.”

    – Joseph Kim
  • – John Royer

    “Thank you for a fantastic swim Dan Simonelli. The water was great and it was a lot of fun exploring La Jolla Cove. Hope to make it out there again soon.”

    – John Royer
  • – Tricia Wilson

    “I had such a great time swimming in La Jolla Cove while learning some new techniques to improve my swim. It is such a great culture of swimmers and open water swimming in the Cove. Thank you Dan Simonelli.”

    – Tricia Wilson
  • – Matthew Ritchey

    “Just had my first open water swim today in La Jolla and saw dolphins ten feet away. Thanks for the tutelage Dan Simonelli. It was an awesome day!”

    – Matthew Ritchey