"The cure for everything is salt water.
Sweat, tears, or the salt sea."
- Karen Blixen, author of Out of Africa
Have you ever considered swimming in the ocean, year-round, like our Nordic friends practice?!
The book "The Finnish Way: Finding Courage, Wellness, and Happiness Through the Power of Sisu" by Katja Pantzar may inspire an adventure of cold water dippings!
My friend Jill Maynard introduced me to the world of open water swimming at the beginning of September, rocking me to my core that many people in the world actually enjoy and reap both physical and mental health benefits from swimming in cold water! Together with my water goddess at the helm, I have taken the plunge twice in the Pacific Ocean during the wee hours of the Fall morning! Elevated and empowered for days was my apes-swim experience.
Let me qualify the word "swim".
I breast stroked with my head out of the water (and gasped in disbelief when Jill dunked her whole head under water and re-emerged peacefully). It took about 2 minutes of being in the water, together with cueing from Jill to focus on my "yoga breathing", for my body-mind to release the cold water shock and re-establish an inner equilibrium. We breast-stroked for about 5-8 minutes. I wore my swimsuit plus kayaking booties and water gloves. And once we were out - we were home bound!
I have since discovered that I feel colder afterwards if I have a warm / hot bath or shower. Jill says its better to have a cool rinse, ending off with a gradual increase in water temperature.
Don't try this cold water swimming alone, friends!
If you'd like to experience open water swimming in the company of all-women (sorry guys - we'll ocean dip with you on another day), mark on your calendar the following date:
Women's Full Moon Ocean Swim
Wed Oct 24th
Deep Cove, Panorama Park
Spread the invitation!
Stand and behold from the beach. Dip. Or swim.
All intentions welcome!
Wear just a swim suit, add booties & gloves, or sport a full body wet suit - your choice!
Enter & swim in the water with the yogic calming & internally warming breath called Ujjayi Breath (or Ocean Breath).
Take a cool to warm shower or bath (but not hot)!
Sip warm to hot drinks!
Registered Clinical Counsellor (MA)