Swim Yourself Happy!

Take on the Swim Yourself Happy challenge over the winter months and see how regularly swimming or dipping in the pool or open water can help you feel happier!

We are raising money for Mind and Samaritans.

This year has been a particularly difficult one for many people. The coronavirus pandemic has caused exceptionally challenging and worrying times for each and every one of us. The effects of social distancing, lockdown, the loss of jobs or income, worry over illness, bereavement of loved ones and the over-consumption of stress-inducing media reports is taking a huge toll on our mental health and wellbeing. It is so important, now more than ever, that we do all that we can to practice some self-care and look after our mental health… 

Swimming is a great way to exercise, but did you know that swimming can be as good for your mind as it is for your body? Swimming can help to reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression and even if you don’t suffer from a specific mental health condition, getting in water will still improve your mood, reduce your stress, and generally help you to unwind and feel happier!

Swimming has significantly reduced the symptoms of anxiety or depression for 1.4 million adults in the UK. Almost half a million British adults with mental health problems have stated that the number of visits to a medical professional regarding their mental health has reduced as a result of swimming! (YouGov poll commissioned by Swim England (2018)). Making positive change can seem really hard, especially during difficult times, but regular swimming is definitely worth a try!…

About Swim Yourself Happy

Can you keep on swimming through to March to reap the health and mental benefits of swimming over the winter months?

Swimming three times a week has be shown to lower stress levels, improve sleep patterns, and lower anxiety and depression but we believe even just one dip a week will make a difference!

Swim Yourself Happy is a fun swimming challenge/project that you can complete wherever you like, any time between 1st November 2020 and 28th Feb 2021! That is 4 months of swimming, but don’t worry, you can complete as many or as few swims as you feel you can by choosing one of our set challenges or by making up your own!

This isn’t a competition. It’s not about how far you can swim, how often you swim, where you swim or how cold the water you can get in is. You complete your Swim Yourself Happy goal purely as a personal challenge in your own time and at your own pace to see if you can feel happier as a result! We would love to see photos of you doing your happy swims so please tag us @loveswimrun and use #swimyourselfhappy in your pictures on social media, or email them to us at challenge@loveswimrun.co.uk so we can see how you are getting on and share your experiences to motivate others to join us to swim happy!

Along with a fun sew on patch to sew onto your costume or your towel, bag or robe to remind you that your swims are all about making yourself feel good, we will also send you a Swim Yourself Happy log sheet which you can use to record all of the swims that you do and rate your happiness level before and after each swim! By doing this, at the end of your challenge you will be able to see how much your swims have helped you to reduce your stress levels, given you a mood lift and made you smile. We’d love to collect the results (anonymously) so we can see how much swimming has made a difference to everyone taking part and share the results with you. It’s not a very scientific study, but it is very interesting none the less! We’ll tell you more about how we will do this once you sign up, but don’t worry, it is not at all compulsory. 

What do I have to do to enter?

Swim yourself happy

The challenge will run for 120 days (from 1st Nov 2020 to 28th Feb 2021) you can complete the challenge over the entire time or join in at any point until the very end, even if that just means trying one dip! Just choose the challenge that is the best fit for you and start swimming!

You can do your swims anywhere – in the sea, a lake, river or the pool, dip in a stream, waterfall, or pond, even a paddling pool in the garden! Go wetsuit or non-wetsuit, we really don’t mind!  Many organised open water swimming venues are staying open though the winter so check to see if there are any local to you.

There are no age limits! You can sign yourself up, sign up a friend, your kids, or your grannie! Do it alone or complete it as a socially distanced challenge with some friends! Most pools have clubs and organised sessions you can join in with. The open water swimming community is very friendly and inclusive and welcomes people of all ages, abilities, shapes and sizes! Read more about how to find people to swim with and how swimming can help with your confidence HERE!

There are four set Swim Yourself Happy challenges for you to choose from, or you can make up your own challenge depending on your personal goals or circumstances:

– Master of Swim Yourself Happy

Swim a minimum of 3 times a week for as many weeks as you can.

– Champion of Swim Yourself Happy

Swim a minimum of twice a week for as many weeks as you can.

– Swim Yourself Happy Groupie

Swim a minimum of once a week for as many weeks as you can.

– Swim Yourself Happy Rookie

Just pledge to give swimming a go! If it makes you happy, keep on going…

– Swim Yourself Happy Maverick

Make up your own swim challege! It could be ‘A dip a day for 7 days’ or ‘Swim in the sea without a wetsuit by February’, if it’ll make you smile and motivate you to swim, just do it!  

Please note: there is only one main patch design for Swim Yourself Happy (it will not show your chosen challenge name), but you can choose to purchase a personalised neck warmer that will display your name and your chosen challenge! 

Price

Price: UK Entry: £10.00 per person / International Entry: £11.00 per person
Includes: Your entry to Swim Yourself Happy, sew-on patch, log sheet and postage, £2 will go to charity.
Entries close on 28th February 2021.

Raising Money for Mind and Samaritans

Mind provide advice and support to empower anyone experiencing a mental health problem. They campaign to improve services, raise awareness and promote understanding of mental health issues. They have pledged to continue fighting until everyone experiencing a mental health problem gets the understanding, support and respect they need.

Samaritans work to make sure there’s always someone there for anyone who needs someone to talk to. They are a charity aimed at providing emotional support to anyone in distress, struggling to cope, or at risk of suicide throughout the UK and Ireland, usually through their telephone helpline (Call 116 123) but they also offer support though letters, email, typetalk and face to face meetings. Samaritans are there 24hrs a day for anyone who needs someone to listen without judgement or pressure. 

£2 profit from each entry will be given to these important charities (£1 to Mind and £1 to Samaritans). You can also make an optional extra donation when you enter if you wish.

Optional Swim Yourself Happy Extras!

Why not give yourself some extra motivation by treating yourself to a Swim Yourself Happy personalised neck warmer or an eco friendly t-shirt, hoodie or art print for your wall? Please read the delivery information below before ordering. Prices include postage. You can order a t-shirt, hoodie or print even if you have not signed up to the challenge – they would make great gifts for any swimmer!

Organic Cotton garments:

(Orders for t-shirts and hoodies will not be received until next year. Next order is going in at end of January, or before if I receive 20 orders)

  • Traditionally screen printed by hand in North Wales – using water based eco friendly inks.
  • 100% Organic Cotton (GOTS) – The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is the worldwide leading textile processing standard for organic fibres. Hoodie is 80% organic cotton and 20% recycled polyester.
  • Certified by Fair Ware Foundation – an independent, non-profit organisation striving to improve working conditions in the textile industry
  • Excellent quality – all garment are well made (we have used them at many of our events!) and have men’s and women’s fit available. The Men’s t-shirts are 180g weight, the woman’s t-shirts are 120g weight. Hoodies are 330g soft suede finish fabric with brushed inner, waffle lined hood with natural coloured drawcords and a kangaroo pocket.

Men’s & woman’s T-shirts: £19
Men’s & woman’s Hoodies: £34

(Print is on front only)

Sizes 
Men’s T-shirts are available in sizes XSmall to XXLarge.
Woman’s T-shirts are available in sizes sizes XSmall to XLarge. (Woman’s SMALL currently out of stock but a more fitted style t-shirt is available in the same colour = half chest 44.5cm, length 64cm, fabric weight 155g)
Men’s Hoodies are available in sizes Small to XXLarge
Woman’s Hoodies are available in sizes Small to XLarge

All garments are printed to order so cannot be returned or exchanged. Please refer to ‘Delivery Information’ for turn around time.
Please use the TSHIRT SIZE GUIDE and HOODIE SIZE GUIDE to carefully pick the correct size.

Personalised Neck Warmer: £15
(Christmas delivery deadline for orders for neck warmers is 11th Dec. Orders placed later may not be received until January)

swimming neck warmer buff

A fine jersey knit tube of cosy fabric to wear in a multitude of ways! Works as a scarf, beanie hat, head band, face covering, sweat band etc! Wear it to show off how happy you are when swimming! One size fits all! These are intended for participants only. If you purchase one without entering only your name will be printed. Neck warmers can take up to 3 weeks to arrive.

A3 Art Print: £15 (frame not included!)

Swim yourself happy print

A3 high quality print on 300gsm recycled card stock to add a bit of swimmy happiness to your wall too! Frame is not included.

Delivery Information

– Postage costs to the UK are included in the price of each item. Items will be sent by 2nd Class Royal Mail. Please contact us at events@loveswimrun.co.uk if you’d like to purchase products to be sent overseas. 

– Clothing will be printed to order and will only be ordered four times during the 4 month challenge: Next order will be put in at the end of January or when I have 20 orders if before then. If you order t-shirts or hoodies now, your items will NOT arrive in time for Christmas, sorry. A final order will be put in end of February. We have to do this to make the print run worth while for the printers and to keep the prices affordable for you.

– Personalised neck warmers are printed to order and depending on how busy the printers are can take up to 3 weeks to arrive. Christmas deadline for neck warmer orders is 11th Dec.

– Art Prints will be delivered within 5 working days. They are delivered in a tube that will not fit through a letter box. Christmas deadline for print orders is 18th Dec.

 

How to sign up or buy products

  • Please read the terms and conditions at the bottom of this page.
  • Click on the button below to go to the entry system.
  • Choose the option/products you require (make sure if you are not in the UK you choose the International option)
  • Select any optional extras you would like to purchase.
  • IMPORTANT: Make sure the address your provide is the same as you’d like the sew-on patch/products to be posted to. If you supply the wrong address we cannot be held responsible for lost items!
  • Please contact us at events@loveswimrun.co.uk if you’d like to purchase products to be sent overseas. 
  • Go and start Swimming Yourself Happy!
Do I have to swim outdoors?

No! You can swim in a swimming pool.

Where can I do my swim?

You can complete your swim anywhere you want – in the sea, a lake, river, pool, pond, steam, waterfall, puddle…

Can I wear a wetsuit?

Yes of course, no problem! You can wear as much neoprene as you need to get you swimming! However, we think you’ll feel even happier after a swim if you can manage to go without a wetsuit!

What if I miss a swim as I am ill / in Lockdown

Don’t worry about it! Make sure you are fully better before you go swimming again and don’t go getting into trouble to go for a swim! You can just pick up where you left off, or you can try and catch up with missed swims later if you want to.

Who can enter a virtual swim?

Anyone! We would ask that if your child (under 16) wants to enter that they should complete their swims under supervision of a parent/guardian but apart from that there are no restrictions. Just get out there and swim! By entering our challenge you are agreeing that any injury or damage that is caused by completing your race is your own responsibility. Love SwimRun Ltd will not be held responsible for any accidents or injury that occurs during your swims. 

I’m not in the UK, can I still enter?

Of course! Although we do have to charge a small postage fee to anyone entering from outside of the UK. Just make sure you choose the ‘International’ option when you enter.

How can I find other people to swim with?

Swimming is something you can do by yourself, which is great because you can go when you want and you don’t have to rely on anyone else, yet humans are social creatures, and connecting with others is important for our mental health. While you will benefit from the peaceful practice of swimming alone, isolating yourself is not always the best thing to do. You can also join a swimming club or swim based fitness sessions at the pool (there are often organised clubs at pools and loads of open water swimming groups on Facebook that welcome new members) or go swimming with a friend. If you swim outdoors and there are no life guards it is really important for your safety that you swim with someone else or at least have someone watching you from the shore and swim with a tow float. 

Visit www.mentalhealthswims.co.uk who are a friendly and inclusive community of swimmers with personal experience of mental health issues who organise regular open water swim meet-ups for peer support around the UK. You don’t even have to swim, just go along for a paddle and a chat to find out more about it. 

Note: During the Covid 19 outbreak, it is important to practice social distancing and follow your current local and government guidelines. Some areas are in lockdown and pools may be shut at times so always check if you can safely and legally go swimming outdoors.

Do I need to send you swim evidence?

No you don’t need to prove to us that you’ve done the swims, but we’d love to see photos of you swimming, or to hear from you about your experiences. Please email us at challenge@loveswimrun.co.uk. Or you can tag us on social media @loveswimrun and #swimyourselfhappy

What is the Log sheet?

When we send you your sew on patch we will also send you a Swim Log Sheet that you can use to record each swim that you do and keep a record of how you felt before and after each swim. As you complete your challenge, this will allow you to see if the swims you do are helping to relieve your stress and improve your mood! At the end of the challenge if you would like to anonymously share your results and findings with us then this will allow us to complete a (very non scientific!) study of how the challenge has benefitted all the participants as a whole group. We will collate this information into some fun graphs and numbers and share them with you! We will collect the information using an anonymous online survey which we will email to you at the end of the challenge. 

When will I get my sew-on patch?

We will send out your patch once you enter. It may take up to 3 weeks to receive your patch but we aim to get them posted out as quickly as possible. Please note that if you have given us an incorrect address or if you move house and fail to notify us of your address change (therefore your patch is sent to the wrong address or is not received at all) then we will be unable to send out a replacement without a charge.

How do you know where to send my sew-on patch?

All sew-on patches will be sent to the address that you registered with when signing up for the challenge. 

How do I order a t-shirt/hoodie/neckwarmer/art print and when with it arrive?

You can order any extra tiems though the entry system. You don’t have to enter the challenge to order items and you can always order things later on if you change your mind and want to treat yourself!

Postage costs are included in the price of each item. Items will be sent by 2nd Class Royal Mail.

– Clothing will be printed to order and will only be ordered twice during the 4 month challenge: First order will be put on 7th Dec so items will arrive in time for Christmas. Second order will be put in mid February so you will have items by the end of the challenge. We have to do this to make the print run worth while for the printers and to keep the prices affordable for you.

– Personalised neck warmers are printed to order and depending on how busy the printers are can take between 2-4 weeks to arrive.

– Art Prints will be delivered within 14 days. Please be aware that they are delivered in a tube that will not fit through a letter box.

When can I register for the challenge?

Registration is open now! You can sign up any time up until 28th February 2021 and from any location!

When do I do my swims?

Whenever you want to between November 1st 2020 and 28th February 2021! Swim as often as you like depending on the challenge you have chosen

Can I change my challenge choice?

Yes, if you find you want to change the challenge you signed up for that is ok! You dont need to tell us, just contine with your new challenge!

I’m injured/sick/locked down can I have a refund?

We are so sorry to hear that. We do not recommend you go swimming if you are physically ill or injured! Unfortunately we cannot offer you a refund but the idea is that you can continue with this challenge going forwards anyway and we really hope that this will motivate to you keep on swimming again as soon as you can.

How much of my entry fee goes towards chairty?

£2 from your entry fee will be given to charity – Mind & Samaritans.

    • If you want to get the most enjoyment out of swimming outdoors through the colder months, here are 15 tips/things you really need to know about/do to keep you safe and having fun!
    • Always swim with a buddy or some sort of safety support such as a tow float AND shore watch, etc. Love SwimRun strongly encourages swimmers to use a tow float for both visibility and safety purposes. Carry a waterproofed phone if you can.
    • Swim within your limits. Open water conditions vary widely, make sure you know the area you are swimming in well and swim within your abilities when it comes to depth,  distance, temperature, waves, currents, water conditions.
    • Adhere to whatever local COVID-19 related social distancing rules that may be in place (abiding by beach closures, maximum gathering sizes, etc).
    • Only swim where you are legally allowed to do so and adhere to any restrictions in place.
    • Leave no trace. Please pick up any litter and leave the water and surrounding areas as you found it
    • Only use ‘Reef Safe’ sunscreen and lubricants to protect aquatic life.

    TERMS & CONDITIONS  

    1. For entrants 16 years and over: By completing an entry to Swim Yourself Happy, I certify I have read and accept the terms and conditions for participation in this event.
    2. For entrants under 16 years:  By completing an entry to Swim Yourself Happy, I certify I am the parent/ guardian of this entrant who is under 16 years and I give my consent for them to participate in this event. I accept the terms and conditions for participation in this event on behalf of the entrant and declare them as capable of completing the distance they have nominated.
    3. Entrants declare that they are physically fit and capable of participating in this event and are not aware of any medical condition or impairment that will prevent participation in this event or will affect their health by participation. This challenge is designed to encourage entrants to try swimming regularly to benefot their mental health, but the results are in no way guaranteed!
    4. Entrants acknowledge that this is a virtual challenge and that the organisers will not provide volunteers, marshals or medical personnel assistance to any entrant.
    5. Entrants have read and agree to abide by the ‘Swim Safely’ advice provided. 
    6. Entrants acknowledge that there are no winners or prizes.
    7. Entrants consent to royalty-free use of their name, photographs, video and comments in any publications and marketing in relation to this event by event organisers Love SwimRun Ltd. You further consent to receiving information about future LoveSwimRun events and special offers and promotions.
    8. Entry is only valid for the participant listed on the entry system and is not transferable.
    9. By agreeing to these terms and conditions, entrants release event organisers, from all claims connected with participation. Entrants indemnify the event organiser of this event directly or indirectly against all liability for any and all injury, loss or damage connected with the entrant’s participation.
    10. Entrants accept that participation in this event is at their own risk and they accept that participating in this event may involve real risk of injury or death.
    11. Entrants acknowledge they will participate and complete their swim in a manner chosen by them, at locations chosen by them and at their own risk.
    12. Entrants acknowledge that should they withdraw for any reason, the entry fee is non-refundable.
    13. Entrants acknowledge that the entry fee is for entry to the event and not to ‘purchase’ the sew-on patch. The patch is a reward for taking part in the challenge. 
    14. T-shirts, hoodies, personalised neck warmers and A3 art prints are all printed to order and cannot be returned or exchanged. 
    15. All extra products will be delivered in line with the time scales described on the webpage. Please only order these items if you are happy to wait for the times stated.