season transitions · Seasonal sadness · swimming · winter

Winter swimming!

Snow swimming!

I’m fascinated by people who swim in the winter months. I’ve got friends who do it and who post their photos to Facebook. Each time, I’m intrigued.

I wrote about the trend of winter swimming last year on the blog.

People say it has  remarkable health benefits including helping with seasonal depression and with relieving the symptoms of menopause. It’s said to be all the rage: Why wild swimming in depths of winter is the new natural high.  People write about the subversive joy of cold water swimming.

There are even battles between the old school hardcore winter bathers and the new trendy winter swimmers who favour fleecy robes for warming up after.

And then this video came across my newsfeed.

Maybe I should just give it a try?

What do you think? What’s the coldest weather/water you’ve swum in before? Tempted to do it again? Love it? Hate it? Tell us your story!

3 thoughts on “Winter swimming!

  1. I’m working on extending my swimming season this year. I went in the ocean a few days ago, and once last month when there was snow on the ground. It’s an activity to be handled with care—enter gradually and monitor your breathing. But it is an awesome reset and mood lifter. Start by just getting in and out. And also prepare yourself by thinking about getting into an ice bath. That makes a big difference. (In the spring you can get hot from a hike or a run and then genuinely feel like an ice bath would feel good.) after a while it becomes something you genuinely crave. I think if you actually want to swim instead of dip, it takes more than one season to acclimatize but I’m no expert on that.

  2. I love winter swimming. I have been swimming year-round in Ottawa for about six years now. Once the rivers freeze we have to drive to Prescott, as the St Lawrence stays open there much longer and opens earlier in spring. We take turns going in so someone is always on shore and able to help others out of wet bathing suits. We don’t go too far from shore so we can get out quickly if something goes wrong, and we bring a tent to change I so we are protected from the wind. Hot tea and snacks afterwards are essential. It is an extreme sport, but also a huge endorphin rush.

Comments are closed.