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10 Open Water Swimming Tips ahead of the Great North Swim

Low Wood Bay, on the shores of Lake Windermere is the home of open water swimming. The Lake District Hotel has hosted The Great North Swim, the UK’s biggest open water swimming event, since 2008 and the The Big Chill Swim, possibly the UK’s coldest winter open water swim event, since 2012 – the water temperature was 5 degrees this year!

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Highlights from Chillswim 2014

Ben Berry after his 450m swim

Ben Berry after his 450m swim

The cold water does phenomenal things to your body and I certainly felt it as my bottom lip went numb after around 60 metres of my 450 metre event. Trawling the lake with my bottom lip as I powered through the cold gave me time to not only taste the finest water in the Lake District but to think about how wonderful this event is.

The reason I was in the Lake, wearing far too little and at its coldest time of year, was because I was having a whale of a time at the second Chill Swim event, hosted by Low Wood Bay. The event doubled in size with this year attracting 570 swimmers including the Estonian ice swimming champion that I was competing against, the Lake District National Park relay team and people dressed as smurfs in a 30 metre “Penguin Dip”.

Of course, getting cold is only half the story and the reasons for jumping in differ greatly between competitors. Hundreds of people raised money for charity; swimming teams from across the UK and the world entered just for the friendly competition; and people like myself did it simply for the fun. Regardless of the reasons for entering I am certain everyone had a massive amount of enjoyment – the camaraderie, atmosphere, awesome venue and warmth of the day more than displaced any short lived cold.

Was doing an endurance race hard? Yes. Would I do it again? Without a doubt! Continue reading

Hundreds set to take part in Big Chill Swim at Low Wood Bay

Over 570 hardy swimmers from around the world will be braving the icy waters of Low Wood Bay Marina, Windermere this weekend for the 2014 Big Chill Swim.

Dive in to the chilly waters

Diving in to the chilly waters of Windermere

The swimmers are not allowed to wear wetsuits and will race over distances of 30, 50 and 450 metres, enduring water temperatures of below 5 degrees. There will also be relay races, and a 1000 metre extreme event for very experienced cold water swimmers. Continue reading

And You Thought Zumba on Dry Land Was A Challange…

Aqua Zumba

Kick-start a healthy new you and make a splash with the hottest new fitness craze, Aqua Zumba.

Our qualified Aqua Zumba trainer, Gemma Sargent, is looking forward to introducing the latest Latin-dance inspired fitness craze, which she describes as “the pool party from Zumba”, to Sandpiper Club members.

Gemma who is a fitness fan in both her professional and personal life is a semi-professional cyclist has recently been signed for a pro-team. She teaches a range of classes at both English Lakes Leisure Clubs including Boxercise, Spinning and Body Conditioning. Speaking of her Aqua Zumba qualification she revealed: “I do a lot of fitness routines in work and I enjoy competitive sport outside of work, but Aqua Zumba is by far my favourite as it incorporates cardio and body conditioning exercise with so much fun”. Continue reading

The Big Chill Swim – Extreme Open Water Swimming in Windermere

 [ About This Video ]

The Big Chill swim took place at Low Wood Bay Marina on Saturday 2nd February 2013. It is billed as “one of the coldest swimming races you’ll ever do” and with the water temperatures hovering around 4.6 degrees in Lake Windermere on Saturday, it certainly was chilly!

The Big Chill Swim consists of the following events.

  • 30m Penguin Dip (non competitive, any stroke)
  • 30m Head up breaststroke
  • 60m Freestyle
  • 4 Person Relay
  • 450m Endurance Swim

English Lakes submitted their very own team for the event consisting of brothers Ben and Elliot Berry and their cousin Emily Berry along with Tim Bell, Manager of Lancaster House. Congratulations to the team who come in first position out of the local teams and third overall in the relay events. All team members were new to the sport of Cold-water swimming. Victoria Tremlin from Zest was also new to the sport, she has also written about her first experience.

Thanks to Nevil Jeffery, Manager of Low Wood Bay for filming the video. Rob Berry, brother of Ben and Elliot from to the English Lakes swimming team and local photographer, was also there filming the event. See Rob’s fantastic video on YouTube.

Great North Swim Q&A with Vicky at the Low Wood Club

Great North Swim at Low Wood Bay

Open water swimming events are happening thick and fast, all over Cumbria. Not to mention the Great North Swim right on our doorstep at Low Wood Bay. Vicky Stainton, Gym Instructor at Low Wood Club will be taking part in the swim this weekend. We asked here how she has been preparing for the open water swim…

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Open Water Swimming Tips for the Great North Swim

The following blog is written by Sandra Gibson, Leisure Clubs Manager at English Lakes.

The week is drawing near and we are nearly there for the Great North Swim. Marquees are appearing – walk-ways are been laid and the sun is out, but I am not sure for how long. Anyway, you’re going to get wet!

The Great North Swim is the biggest swimming event ever to be staged in Britain with 10,000 participants. Hosted at Low Wood Bay Resort Hotel & Marina

I have lived in the lakes all my life and part of growing up was the summer holidays swimming in the local river and yes, the odd dip in the lake.

I have just been reading a fairly interesting article put together by an experience outdoor swimmer ‘John Flanagan’ so I thought I would share a few of his tips.

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