Open water swimming has grown in popularity and continues to attract large groups of swimmers of all abilities. However, there are risks and swimmers must be cautious when swimming in open water. Follow these top tips to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable swim:
Do I have the right gear? Wear a bright hat (furo green or fluro orange are the best) and a tow float to make sure you can be seen by other water users.
Do I know what the weather is like? If the water is too rough, don’t swim. Always check the weather forecast, including tide information and waver height before you go swimming.
Am I confident and do I have the knowledge and skills? Never swim alone, always go with someone else and to a familiar spot, where possible, go to an accredited facility and follow their guidance. Enter the water slowly and acclimatise to allow your body to get used to the temperature. Know how far you can swim in the conditions for the day.
If you do get yourself into trouble, remember to Float to Live. Cold water shock passes in less than 2 minutes so relax, float on your back until you can control your breathing.
View the RNLI’s ‘Float to Live’ video below for more life saving advice.