for a bit of Winter excitement and a chance to raise funds for the Mudlarks project to regenerate Weston Marine Lake.
Through the summer months many of us have been swimming once or even twice a day ..in the sea or in rivers and lakes. Some have swum great distances….We have at least one channel swimmer in our numbers, and several people have swum up to 5 km. Most of us however have had a relaxed social time ….at most, swimming around the pier as we chat, sometimes not getting past the bobbing and chatting phase in our favourite swim spot. On a good day we might sit in the sun and drink coffee or hot chocolate afterwards, other times we might have to rush back to work.
Whatever the day, summer swimming is a very different beast to her winter sister. As the water gets colder so the challenge and the health benefits increase. There is now much evidence that cold water swimming is really good for us, at the very least it boosts endorphin production and hence that “feel good” factor. However, motivating ourselves to keep going when the temperature drops can be a problem.
So, a plethora of Polar Bear challenges has sprung up around the country so that we have cold water swimming goals and deadlines to meet. Many of these are very competitive and hence can feel a bit exclusive and excluding.
Mudlarks have always been about creating a safe outdoor space for everyone, for year round swimming and other water sports, as well as restoring the amazing heritage site of Weston Marine Lake.
Mudlarks Polar Bear challenge is therefore as inclusive as we could make it. There is a category for everyone including “Land Lover”.
The main thing is, at least twice a month from October to March to have engaged in some activity to do with sea, lake or river swimming. Equally important is the opportunity to have been part of our amazing Mudlarks community.
The activities are explained in the entry form.
Swimmer, Dipper and Paddler are probably self explanatory, Bear cubs are under 14 and can do any of the water based activities or Land Lover, (which means perhaps doing a spot of beach litter picking, making a cake for the swimmers or even hold a towel!)
One of the great things about the polar bear challenge is the support we give each other and the encouragement to keep going even when the water temperature drops below 5 degrees.
There are no externally fixed distances or time spent in the water to be achieved.
This is your challenge…challenge yourself! Just do it twice a month from 1st October to the end of March.
What does it cost?
£15.00 per adult, £5 for bear cubs.
What do you get?
A really beautiful cloth badge for your Towel, dry robe or cossie. And hopefully, an end of season party (Lake regeneration and Lockdowns permitting!!!) Plus the chance to support Mudlarks fundraising.