Learning to do relationships right is learning to do poly right. The very same things that are essential to strong, healthy mono relationships apply to poly relationships (though perhaps threefold or fourfold or twelvefold).
When speaking of various forms of non-monogamy...it ain't poly if you're just fucking around.
While polyamory, open relationships, and swinging are all distinctly different approaches to non-monogamy, they are not mutually exlusive. Folks can, and some do, engage in more than one of them at a time--and it's all good.