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Your Ultimate Guide to Joining an Open Water Swimming Group

Have you been daydreaming about the gentle pull of a lake, the rush of a river, or the open embrace of the sea welcoming you? If you’re ready to take your fitness into the open waters, joining a group of like-hearted swimmers can greatly enhance your experience. Below let's you know what awaits you when you become part of an open water swimming community.

outdoor swimming group swimming

A Warm Current of Community Spirit

Open water swimming is more than a sport; it’s a community. The moment you dip your toes into this world, you’ll be met with infectious enthusiasm and a bounty of shared experiences. There’s a certain kinship among swimmers that immediately bonds over the love of water.

Anchoring Safety, Together

Navigating the waters with the safety net of a community means shared wisdom on tides, temperature, and techniques. The groups prioritise safety with tips and strategies, ensuring every member feels confident and secure.

Swimming at Your Own Pace

Whether you’re just starting out or you have the stamina of a seasoned sea turtle, these groups accommodate and celebrate all skill levels. You’ll find a supportive network cheering on your progress stroke by stroke.

Gear Guidance from Seasoned Swimmers

Questions about the right tow float, wet suit or goggles? Your fellow swimmers are a wellspring of advice, having tested the waters before. You might even snag a discount courtesy of a group’s local affiliations.

Structured Swims for Every Swimmer

Dabble in a variety of session styles from casual, social splashes to fitness-focused swims. There’s a swim for every mood and objective, complete with the coaching you need to up your game.

Charting Your Course

With the open water as your swimming pool, the challenges are varied but never faced alone. From mastering sighting to understanding currents, you’ll gain indispensable insights from swimmers who’ve swam the course before.

Beyond the Swim: Social Splashes

The ripples of an open water swimming group spread far beyond physical exercise. Expect invigorating conversation, shared meals, and a treasure trove of memories made on land as well as water.

The "Fountain of Health"

Immerse yourself in the therapeutic qualities of open water – a potent mix of physical workout and mental decompression, washing off life’s stresses with every stroke.

A Panorama of Locations

Groups typically rotate swimming spots, offering fresh vistas and challenges to keep your swimming routine interesting.

A Tide of Opportunities

Feel the thrill of participating in races, the warmth of charity swims, and the pride of environmental conservation efforts. There can be lots of events waiting for you, if you want to take part. 

cold water swimming gear

Now, how do you find this fantastic flotilla of swimmers?

Navigate the Net

A virtual dive via Google or dedicated platforms like Meetup.com can easily yield local group treasures. Familiarise yourself with the schedule of each group through their online presence.

swimming group                                                                   Image: @Cornish_Kelpie_

Local Pools

The local swimming pool is often a beacon for open water enthusiasts. Tap into this resource to discover affiliated groups or open water events on your doorstep.

Specialist Sites and Societies

Scour the vast resources of online swimming forums, dedicated websites, and organisations like the Outdoor Swimming Society for group listings and events.

The Social Wave

Let hashtags guide you through the social media ocean to discover groups and events on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter using #openwaterswimminggroups 

The Gear Merchants’ Gathering Spots

Local sporting and outdoor stores can be surprising hubs of community interaction. A quick visit might connect you to a local group or a board posting about meet-ups.

The Ripple Effect of Recommendations

Never underestimate the value of a good old chat. Friends, family, or colleagues who love the outdoors might just have the perfect group in mind for you.

Community Boards: The Physical Network

Physical bulletin boards in places like community centres and local libraries are still classic go-tos for open water swimming group flyers and announcements.

With this guide, you are now set to swim with the current towards your new open water swimming group. Each group is unique, so make sure their communication style, ethos, and activity level match your vibe and you’ll be sure to make a splash.

Prepare your swimsuit, tow float and swim cap and let the journey to uncharted waters begin. 

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