Athlete holding a sea urchin during ironman swim lessons and training.

Salty Swim School had its first Ironman in 2022. Kona hasn’t seen an Ironman in a couple of years due to the lockdown, but athletes across the globe DID NOT SHUT DOWN. They trained and qualified like never before. Ironman had over 5000 World Championship athletes qualify this year, so they expanded the race to three days welcoming athletes, families, friends, sponsors, and fans from around the world. The 2024 summer Olympics in Paris is expecting just over 10,000 athletes next year. The new Ironman is half an Olympics!

Salty Swim School closed down all swim lessons for two weeks when the Ironman swimming community took over the location. My team volunteered on both race days catching athletes, and I must have looked a hundred athletes in the eyes as they crossed the finish line. Some wanted high five, some threw up, some wanted their mommy and some needed food. That one guy was really grateful for the foot massage I offered. He cried. He wasn’t the only one. They all wanted their metal, and I got to place a few. I am forever changed from my grateful place of service to the event, and I highly recommend volunteering.

Ironman competition swimmer standing in front of a sponsor board.


Salty Swim School LLC trained with two athletes this year. One was a 76-year-old bucket lister who needed a qualifying swim time. We worked with him daily and narrow the time. The second athlete was a top finisher who had an amazing fast swim. She needed a heads-up on the course a week before race day. We only swam with her once. Salty Swim School also had a swimming coach in the race and couldn’t be prouder of Coach Glee Jewell who raced well and finished top in her class.

Salty Swim School started as a service project to our kama’aina keiki during the pandemic, and we carry on a mission to always serve this great community in Salty Service.