My wild swimming ways and why it is the season to get back in touch with nature



Boxing Day in Devon, when battered, bruised and frozen swimmers on a charity fundraiser were reduced to wounded wrecks, only points up the madness of the modern phenomenon of “wild swimming”. To be frank, it’s hardly surprising that inexperienced open-air swimmers were caught out. Used to balmy (well, relatively speaking) British summertime seas, they were taken unawares by rough and very cold water. Many observers criticised the participants for risking not only their own safety but also that of those who had to rescue them. Some people might say the same about David Cameron’s watery antics this week, as he waded and dived in the Chadlington Great Brook Run.

But isn’t there something heroic, empathetic, even, in these antics? Aren’t we really trying to reconnect with a lost sense of nature? Our lives are generally so remote from the natural world. We live under constant surveillance, forever prey to digital demands, bathed in the pixel glow of electronic screens. The elemental alternative of cold, open water – and all that it represents – is the ultimate antidote to that consuming artificiality. All the more so in the dark days of the year’s end, when those same elements seem both threatening and, yet, strangely evocative. More…

#Chadlington #Swimmingsport #BoxingDay #Brook #GreatBrookRun #DavidCameron #Christmas #Devon

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