Wild Swimming with WASC
Swimming in the fresh, natural water is a delight,
but it's important to be aware of the dangers before you swim.
What WASC can do
We can organise trips to natural swimming places - lakes, river and sea - where club members can go together and keep an eye on each other while we swim.
We can lend club wetsuits to you.
We can share our joint knowledge and experience about how to stay safe and warm.
What WASC can't do
We aren't wild swimming instructors, so we can't guarantee your safety.
We don't know about your tolerance to cold water or your swimming ability, so we can't know for sure if a wild swim event is right for you.
We don't have public liability cover for wild swimming, so you attend wild swimming events at your own risk.
Tips for a successful wild swim
If you aren't sure about your tolerance to natural water, wear a wetsuit.
Wear grippy wet shoes and warm clothes for afterwards. Don't forget to bring a towel!
Be aware that your ability to swim decreases in cold water. You will be able to swim about a tenth as well in 'wild' water as you can in a swimming pool. Expect your muscles to seize up and your body position to change.
Don't be afraid to cancel a trip if conditions look risky.
Don't feel you must continue a trip just because others are.
Never swim in urban rivers and canals.
Be aware that rats can cause Weil's disease.
Don't swim near weirs or under waterfalls.
Don't swim where you see blue-green algae.
If you hear a report about dangerous water conditions locally, please share them with the group.
Strap yourself to an inflated dry bag and wear a bright coloured cap.
If you start shivering and your teeth start chattering, get out and get warm. Jumping jacks are a great way to warm up.
Don't swim after heavy rain, when currents are fast and familiar swim spots are deeper.
Don't jump in unless you are absolutely sure that there are no submerged rocks.
Look out for your fellow swimmers. Don't encourage them to stay in the water if they are struggling.