What is Swimrun?
Swimrun is an endurance sport, in which you run and swim along a set course. In the course you run between lakes and swim over the lakes without stopping in between. As you switch between running and swimming many times during the course you complete the whole course in the same gear.
One of the best things about Swimrun is that, unlike triathlon, you simply put your kit on, cross the start line and keep moving. There is no need to change equipment or gear at any time. Another unique thing about Swimrun is that the rules allow you to use additional equipment to help you. For example swimming with flotation aids. Managing all your equipment can, however, take some practice.
We recommend that you keep it as simple as possible in the beginning and just enjoy the movement and journey! As you get more comfortable swimming in your trainers and running in your wet suit you can introduce other bits of kit.
Enjoy the nature and the experience
Swimrun is not only about the competition but about the experience, the adventure and the closeness to nature. Swimrun is performed on nature’s terms,which adds an extra element to each individual race.
About Solvalla Swimrun and our routes
The Solvalla Swimrun history in brief:
- 2014: Solvalla Swimrun was the first Swimrun competition to be held in Finland.
16 teams competed in the full distance race, which was the only distance to be arranged. In 2014 Solvalla Swimrun also became an ÖtillÖ Partner Race.
- 2015: the participation number doubled and the sprint race was organized for the first time.
- 2016: about 72 teams participated in Solvalla Swimrun
- 2017: Solvalla Swimrun Endurance route was launched
- 96 teams were on the start line.
- All ÖtillÖ Partner races became Merit races.
The Solvalla Swimrun distances – which race should I choose?
- In Solvalla Swimrun there are different distances: Sprint, Endurance and ÖtillÖ Merit Race.
Solvalla Swimrun Sprint
- If you are a beginner to swimrun and just want to try out the sport and enjoy the experience, we recommend you to take part in the Sprint race. The sprint race does not require hardcore training to complete. However, some
basic endurance training and swimming training is recommended. The Solvalla Swimrun sprint race is quite technical, so we recommend you to stay alert during the running session! Read more about the sprint race>>
Solvalla Swimrun Endurance
- Do you have a background in endurance sports, or have participated in swimrun sprint races before? If the answer is yes Solvalla Swimrun Endurance might be the best fit for you! The Endurance route is 25 km of which 3,5 km is swimming (the longest swimming session is 750m). As this distance is longer than the sprint race it naturally requires a higher level of endurance resistance from the participants than the sprint race. The running sessions in Solvalla Swimrun Endurance are not as technical as in the sprint distance but there are very tough elements in this race. Some of these elements are: a staircase of about 350 steps and the notorious Swinghill downhill skiing slope just before the finish line. Read more about the endurance race >>
ÖillÖ Merit Race
- Do you have a history of extreme sports, triathlon, aquathlon or long distance trail running? Then challenge yourself with ÖtillÖ Merit Race! The Solvalla Swimrun ÖtillÖ Merit Race is a total of 38,8 km, of which 5,8km is swimming (longest swimming distance is 750m).The ÖtillÖ Merit Race is a combination of the Sprint and Endurance routes, which means that you will encounter both technical running paths and trails, fast running trails and tough vertical elements!We are proud to be an ÖtillÖ Merit Race. The ÖtillÖ Merit Races are selected by ÖtillÖ on the following criteria:
“These are the races that we feel are important to the development of the sport of swimrun. We also feel that these races provide a great experience for the racer.”
Read more about the ÖtillÖ Merit race>>
Solvalla Swimrun Service Stops
Solvalla Swimrun has several service stops. The sprint race has one stop, the endurance race has 3 stops and the Merit race has 5 stops.The complete list of what will be provided at each stop will be launched about 1 month before the race.
On these service stops we offer:
At the finish line we offer our famous hot tomato soup by Villa Solvalla.
Training for Solvalla Swimrun
As swimrun is classed as an extreme sport, some training and basic endurance level is highly recommended before you set off on the course.
A good way to start training is to start doing some trail running and train free style swimming. At Solvalla Swimrun we also offer free training sessions, during which you can familiarize yourself with the sport and meet other swimrunners.
The Solvalla Swimrun Training Sessions will take place in May-June and August 2018. The schedule for the sessions will be released in Spring 2018. Please remember that there are a set amount of places available for each session, so remember to register on time!
Solvalla Swimrun gear
All teams need to bring all their equipment from start to finish. If a team fails to bring all their equipment to the finish line they might face disqualification.
All equipment, including snacks and such, have to be labelled with participant name, team name or number.
There are many different types of wet suits. Our partner Head Swimming offers wet suits specifically tailored for swimrun. The wet suits designed specifically for Swimrun usually have a zip on both the front and back, so that you can easily remove the top half if you get hot during the running parts. They also tend to have a whistle fastened in the zip.
A traditional wet suit can also be worn, it might just take a while to get used to running in it.
At Solvalla Swimrun we do not require you to wear any specific wet suit when you compete. However, we recommend that you use a wet suit that you are comfortable in swimming in when the water temperature is between 11-15c. The wet suit can be either short or long sleeved. Find out more about wetsuits for Swimrun here>>
It is mandatory to wear the race bib you get from Solvalla swimrun during the whole race. As we strive to be a green race and be respectful towards the nature we aim to reuse the race bibs next year. Please help us do this by returning the race bib when you have finished the race.
Solvalla Swimrun provides you with a cap for the race. The race cap is yours to keep after the race.
GPS-watch or compass
For safety reasons all teams need a GPS watch or compass. This is to make sure you will find your way back if you for some reason get lost on the track. Our partner Garmin offers ideal GPS watches for swimrun. For instance, the Fenix5 Multisport watches allows you to access to a map.
First aid equipment
- 1 First aid pressure bandage, packed waterproof
- 2 Whistles, 1 per person
During a Swimrun event you don’t change your kit – you swim in your trainers and run in your wet suit. Therefore you should choose shoes that are light weight, buoyant and that drain well. It is also important that the shoes are a good fit to stop them from falling off when you swim. Other characteristics you should check are that the shoes have good grip as you will be running over rocks. There are many different types of shoes you can use. Look at the different variants here>>
Most teams use goggles when participating in swimrun, however, many go without goggles. Even though goggles serve a purpose by protecting your eyes and providing vision in and under water, you still have to carry them along all the time.
There are different sizes and types of hand paddles to fit swimrunners on all levels. The paddles can be used to improve your technique and increase your power during the swimming sessions. Familiarise yourself with different alternatives>>
A pull buoy or leg float is a figure-eight shaped piece of closed-cell foam used in swim workouts. The buoy is placed between your thighs or ankles to provide support to the body without kicking your legs; this allows you to focus on your arms and rest your hips and legs during the swimming sessions. Familiarise yourself with different alternatives>>
The main use of the pull cord is to help pull the weaker swimmer during the swims or help pull the weaker runner during tough uphill sessions. However, many teams still opt for racing without one.
Why Solvalla Swimrun?
of the Solvalla Swimrun participants are satisfied with the race and strongly recommend Solvalla Swimrun to their friends!
“A big thank you to your team for organizing such a great well planned and executed event and the friendly hosting. A hug on the finish line is more than a tired swim runner could ask for 🙂 and it made all the difference.”
”The nature and the path you had chosen for the race were excellent. The switch from the swim and the run parts and the intervals were designed well and balanced. The trace over the path, the buoy in and at the exit of the swimming stations were clear and visible. It was impossible to get lost.”
Participants in the ÖtillÖ Merit Race 2016
”We truly loved your race! Extremely well organised and friendly atmosphere. We appreciated the reactivity of the correspondence with you before the race and that you were there to greet us when we finished. The race was tough but fun, beautiful and well marked and the swimming parts were magical!!! The lakeside sauna session and the buffet after the race were gold. We almost did not want to leave! We give you 5 of 5 stars!”
Participants in the ÖtillÖ Merit Race 2017
“Great trails, atmosphere and race organisation :)”
Solvalla Swimrun participant 2016
“Great trails, atmosphere and race organisation 🙂 Very challenging competition, much more challenging than Stockholm Swimrun and Amfibiemannen in Sweden, but not impossible if you don’t let the cold waters stop you”
ÖtillÖ Merit Race participant in 2016