Run Surrey Hills
Next Ticket: 09/09/2022
The Wild Swim Project.......it’s not just fun, it’s good for you…
Immersion in cold water gradually reduces stress levels in everyday life and generates a greater sense of wellbeing. It is well known for reducing feelings of anxiety and boosting the immune system of those who regularly swim or dip. It also provides a fantastic way to immerse yourself with the local environment, be active in a non-competitive way and share the experience with other like-minded people.
There is so much more to wild swimming than actual swimming. It is wonderful to arrive at a beautiful place and then to gently wade into cool calm waters and see the world from a different perspective as you become part of the scenery. Both dipping and swimming in nature makes you feel alive, it clears your head and makes you realise that if you can do this you can do other things. Once you are out of the water there is the feelings of euphoria and of community as you smile at your fellow dippers, share stories and agree to meet again same time next week.
Participants benefit from improved confidence, body positivity, mental health, the learning and passing on of new skills, taking on new challenges, engaging with their local wild spaces and thereby creating emotional connections to it, meeting people from other walks of life and very importantly socialising as part of a wider community.
What is the Wild Swim project
It is a series of 4 wild swimming sessions designed for people who will gain from the mental and physical health benefits that immersing in cold water, within the natural environment, brings. Over the 4 sessions, we introduce the group to the benefits of swimming wild, give them the skills and knowledge to build confidence and encourage people to follow their own wild swimming journey. The expectation is that people attend as many of the 4 sessions as possible.
These sessions are aimed at those people who feel they have or they have been diagnosed with having mild or moderate mental health ill health. Funded by the NHS they are the equivalent of a 'prescription' and can be a great addition to your usual self care or medication.
The course is led by Jude Palmer and Paul Mackenzie, both Open Water Swimming Coaches, Open Water Lifeguards and First Aiders who are seasoned wild swimmers themselves.
Session 1: Friday 2nd Sept 10:00 - 12:00
Session 2: Friday 9th Sept 10:00 - 11:30
Session 3: Friday 16th Sept 10:00 - 11:30
Session 4: Friday 30th Sept 10:00 - 11:30
Who can join in…
The course is for those who can already swim in a pool, any swimming stroke, at any speed and are able to swim a total of 200m in a pool and have no issues with high blood pressure.
Where does the Wild Swim project take place?
The course is based on the River Wey near Ripley, Surrey. Full details will be sent on booking.
What do I need to bring?
No specialist equipment is required, the minimum is something to swim in, towel, and plenty of warm clothes – other equipment is available to borrow. We will have changing robes which can be used for modesty. Wetsuits are not needed.
How to sign up…
This course is funded by Surrey Heartlands Green Prescribing project. A range of healthcare professionals, link workers and support services can refer you to this course. Once referred the course is free.
You will be asked to complete questions around your mental and physical wellbeing before and after the course. This information will be kept confidential and will be used to see how useful sessions like these are in supporting people with mental health challenges. (please ask if you would like to know more)
What people say about it…