Why Wild Swimming is a good thing, shivering and all!
We at ‘All the Good Things’ retreats know whats good for ya, mind, body and soul. Our upcoming Cornish weekend is a smorgasboard of goodness including surfing, foraging, weekend long analogue photography project, Yoga, wine tasting and wild swims. Those last two not together mind you!
Hayley Johns, All the Good Things co-founder & resident Yogi, gave us the low down on wild swimming and why its so hot damn good for us .. even if it doesn’t feel so warm at the time ..
A few years ago I discovered the joys of Wild Swimming. Now, I’m not used to being in open bodies of water in the UK without 4.3mm of neoprene covering my ass, but that May it was just me, a swimsuit, a river in Kent and the coldest water I have ever felt. It took a good ten minutes and a lot of screeching before I could even put my shoulders under, but it felt great! With teeth chattering, feeling like superwoman swimming with the current back to the shore, before I’d even got out I wanted more. Addictive is an understatement.
The benefits of cold water therapy have long been known, with various studies monitoring something called ‘cold adaption’ in the body which after repeated exposure includes; increased immunity, an elevation in metabolic rate (must be all that shivering), improvement in mood (to which I can attest), and increased libido (to which I cannot).
Everything just looked better after a dip in the great outdoors, including my skin, which was toned and vibrant. I was also more relaxed, the cold water lowers blood pressure and eases muscle pain and tension and when we are relaxed, our nervous system is soothed. Just like in Yoga! I’m always seeking more natural ways to boost my immunity and this slightly unorthodox addition to my repertoire is for keeps!