Open Water swimming is so freeing, to me. There’s something about being “out there” in the natural elements can be quite soothing. Although I always swim with a group, when I swim I’m alone. I am focused and closed off from whatever is happening on land and in my digital life. It’s liberating.
But open water swimming is also about community and bring people together. There’s nothing quite like socializing with fellow swimmers after a hard race. These people share a common passion to swim faster and support each other in this endeavor.
The sport is filled with bonds of community. One example of this is Swim4Good. The group was formed by Emily Kunze, Susan Moody and Mauricio Prieto in 2012. Their initial goal was to use their passion for open water swimming to raise money for Worldreader, which helps children in developing countries to become avid readers. Swim4Good raised almost $110k for Worldreader. They have continued (and expanded) the group to include several swimmers throughout the world raising funds for many worthy charities. You can learn more here.
If you are training for an upcoming race, consider how you might fold in a social cause. Sites like CrowdRise and GoFundMe have made it easier than ever for people to contribute. And your social media channels are filled with friends and family that are willing to show their support for you, your sport and your chosen charity.