Swimming in the winter might seem like madness but there are some great benefits to doing this. Not only does it make you feel amazing but everything, from skin to heart health can be improved too. If you’re going to try winter swimming this year then these are our top tips.
- Start now. Don’t wait for the perfect moment or until you have all the right kit. If you’re feeling the desire to get in the water then go with the momentum and start today.
- Decide when you’re going to swim. Give yourself a regular swimming schedule and you’ll find it much easier to stick to regular dips. Choose one or two days a week that work for you and make sure you keep to them.
- Stay warm before you swim. If you’re already cold then you might find it harder to motivate yourself to get in the water - and to warm up afterwards. So, make sure that you stay toasty right up until the moment you’re ready for a dip.
- Swim at a time that works for you. For most people this is going to be the morning or during the day - in the evening it will get colder as the light fades and you might find it harder to motivate yourself to go.
- Choose social accountability to help you commit. Swimming with a friend is a great idea, not just from a safety perspective but also to make sure you actually go. If it’s just you then you won’t feel the same social accountability as if you have someone else who is expecting you to show up.
- Don’t hang around. Whether you’re swimming in a river, the sea or an outdoor pool make sure that you get in quickly. The initial flash of cold is the hardest so you need to get through it quickly to avoid backing out.
- Go for it as soon as you get in. The quickest way to feel warmer is to start swimming energetically as soon as you’re in the water. Warm up with a little freestyle and then start actively going for your lengths.
- Set some goals. Perhaps you want to swim further this winter or improve the quality of your stroke. Now is the ideal time for setting objectives and creating a training schedule or goals to make them happen.
- Think about the summer. Remember the start of the summer last year when you wished you’d done more swimming through autumn and winter to stay fit? Think about that as you’re getting in the water and how much better you’re going to feel when summer 2021 rolls around.
- Get warm as soon as you get out. Make sure that you take off wet swimwear straight away and get into warm clothes and a hat and cosy footwear. A hot drink is essential to help you warm up (avoid a hot shower as this can be too much for the body after a cold swim).
Winter swimming is a wonderful experience and can get you set up for more enjoyable summer swimming next year too.