Over the past few years, open water swimming has been growing as a sport, with the latest Active People Survey stats showing that nearly 100,000 people are now regularly swimming outdoors.
Just seven years ago, the 2009 stats showed that that less than 50,000 people were swimming outdoors. This big jump in numbers is thought to be due to the increasing number of open water races which cater to people of all ages and abilities, and the inclusion of open water swimming in the Olympic Games from 2008.
Outdoor and open water swimming is a new and exciting way to enjoy the sensation of being in the water, offering up great landscapes, the feeling of freedom and adventure and the adrenaline junkies who want to get involved in the cold water swimming events.
In Dec 2015 record numbers of competitors were reported taking part in festive swims across the country, largely thought to be due to the milder weather, but also indicating that there is a growing appetite for swimming in the UK’s lakes and seas all year round.
This is possibly due to a changing attitude towards outdoor spaces, with an increasingly urban and technology focussed lifestyle, the appreciation of the nature and the outdoors in seeing a rise in the number of people who are doing sport in more rural locations.
The increase in interest for the sport also means that more people are looking to join societies such as the Outdoor Swimming Society, and open water clubs such as our own to receive coaching which will prepare them for competitive events and marathon swims.
The IoS is now delivering the ASA Level 2 Award Coaching Open Water Swimming QCF which is aimed at Level 2 Swimming or Triathlon Coaches who want to acquire specialist knowledge delivering open water swimming sessions to a range of participants.
Click to register your interest in training as an open water coach.