Outside Magazine names Nyad one of their Adventurers of the Year

edited April 2013 in General Discussion
So what do you think?


Make sure to compare her to the others who were named. Who said showmanship doesn't count?



  • meh
    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
  • Showmanship absolutely counts... for selling magazines.
  • Maybe it's the non open water swimmers that thinks what she has done is amazing? For me, I think she goes a little too far to retain the integrity if a swim. Having said that, when I am her age, I would love to think I could swim nearly 100 miles in one go (even wearing fins and getting onto a boat every few hours for a rest). It's still a heck of an achievement, even though its not pure enough when compared to 20 mile swims.
  • I don't believe Open water swimming can ever be adventurous as long as you're swimming with a boat and crew.
  • Adventure or not, DN seems to be the only one on the list for “trying”
    Norwich University motto: “I Will Try”
    .... kind of falls a bit flat.
    ...anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
  • “I’m either going to die or make that swim,” says the Los Angeles–based Nyad, who plans to try again this summer.

    Oh, boy. What happens if she does succomb to a jellyfish sting or athsma attack? At what point does the rest of the world start doubting her credibility?

    I am not looking forward to the same debate this summer.
  • #notimpressed
  • Gnome has is about right. The escort boat makes any swim too safe. Just imagine if Everest or Antarctic explorers could bail out at any moment and safely fail. Climbers do climb without ropes but if a swimmer tried to swim without an escort, the community would say it was irresponsible. We argue enough about streamers and other aids to a successful swim, but we all accept the one aid that really does affect the outcome, the escort boat.
  • edited April 2013
    Edmund Hillary used Sherpa Tenzing and oxygen tanks as his safety.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • oxooxo
    edited April 2013
    Gnome and Haydn have it about right
  • I like Outside magazine but seeing her in there was unpleasant. There are so many other swimmers having much more Xtreme adventures that would fit the spirit of the magazine and the article in a more authentic fashion. Give me a Redmond or Tina or Palfrey or Miller or Barra or any number of other people pushing the envelope in the water, not in the PR game. I'm not saying DN's swims are easy or without value, but they aren't what they're advertised to be and that pisses me off.
  • edited April 2013
    Anyone who thinks a safety boat guarantees safety in a Channel swim is sadly uninformed of the reality.
  • oxooxo
    edited April 2013
    Gnome and Haydn have it about right
  • said:

    Anyone who thinks a safety boat guarantees safety in a Channel swim is sadly uninformed of the reality.

    I wouldn't say that a boat is a guarantee of safety, but I do think all of us would agree that is tremendously decreases a lot of risks associated with open water swimming.
  • I think I'm the ultimate extreme swimmer. One year I swam. The next year, I didn't.
  • So far in the other thread we have only one mile suggested by one swimmer that they would swim away from shore without an escort. I still think some of the 'aids' Nyad uses are virtually pointless compared to an escort boat that we all use as an aid, or a wetsuit that many others use. (When used with 100 mile swims.) such swims may demand new aids that normal (under 20 miles) swims can easily do without.

    She is still only one of a handful people in history taking on such distances and will soon be drawing an old age pension. It may not be pure or have the integrity of what most ows believe, but I don't think that matters quite so much at these extremes.

    Remove the escort boats and lets see a 20 mile open water swim. That will rattle some cages.
  • edited April 2013
    Still need a boat for the observer.

    You don't expect him/her too swims along do you?
    And also don't expect us to believe you've swam the entire distance (unaided) without an observers for confirmation.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • Actually this has been the "rub" against Nyad as far back as 30 years ago. She made a lot of attempts, but her finish resume is very thin. She is excellent when it comes to PR and we could learn a lot from here on that score. A lot of open water swimmers just aren't that interested in promoting themselves or their swims.
  • I personally consider Nyad’s 102 mile 27+ hour swim from Bimini to Florida, one of the all time great true endurance swims.

    With that said, I agree with Karen that Nyad’s finish resume is thin and that she has done a great job of self-promotion; it likely helped getting her into IMSHOF. And how many of us have been inducted into the Hall of Fame? Actually quite a few inductees are still active here; Karen, Steve, Penny, Anne; to name a few. Most of these, like Karen, were honored for their amazing body of work while swimming under the radar of the general public.

    But back to the topic of the thread… I may be in the minority on this forum; I personally prefer seeing a swimmer get recognized as Adventurer of the Year, rather than some guy who parachuted 24 miles from a balloon. Were there more successful open water, marathon and endurance swimmers in 2012? Absolutely, yes! Are any of them a more recognizable household name than Diana Nyad? Probably not. Is Nyad’s most recent failed attempt any more adventurous than her other 3 attempts? Probably not, but does it deserve comments like “seeing her in there was unpleasant”? I would have hoped our community would be a bit more supportive.
  • @Rob_Copeland, You'd wish we were more supportive? Are you are unaware of how DN invited Barra, myself & others to comment on her blog about her heat drip device, and when some people did so respectfully she allowed her utterly uninformed xtreme dream stormtroopers to attack the actual knowledgeable swimmers commenting, without any intervention? And it's funny how when I raise this point there's never an answer from her or her supporters.

    Seeing her placed ahead of Steve Redmond, who wasn't mentioned for last year, is ludicrous. She has led the general public into seeing her as the face of marathon swimming, which most people here, who understand the sport and the genuine accomplishments, dislike. (And I see evidence of this on the incoming search hits I get on my blog). No-one else being as recognisable a name as DN isn't really any sort of endorsement other than of her self-promotion, and doesn't, I guess, engender any jealousy from most of us, only sorrow or annoyance.
  • @Rob_Copeland unpleasant was the nicest word I could muster for someone whose public persona has been incredibly successful at rubbing me the wrong way. Don't get me wrong, I love seeing a cap and goggles in that list! I've just always felt like these Cuba swims were disingenuous attempts. Very high profile outings with minimal chance of success but very high chances of book tours and speaking gigs. As an open water super fan that offends me, I can't help it. Maybe I'm overly jaded and I've got it all wrong, but that's always been the vibe I've gotten and I know I'm not the only one that has that feeling.
  • Good point Niek, I forgot about the observer. I am just suggesting that we all use artificial swim aids, the boat being the biggest aid, so why worry too much about other aids that don't actually aid that much.

    I would add that I have a swim idea that excludes the boat and observer. But does require other aids that swimmers don't normally take the benefit of. The swim is otherwise impossible. Some swims , go beyond normal and so need different aids .

    Nyads swims seem to be caught between the normal swimming swims, and swims that cannot be classed as normal. Abnormal swims cannot always confirm with normal swim rules.

    This does not mean her swims are without merit, crumbs, they are nearly 100 miles.
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