Our Social Swim Community now spans the globe, and is a network of Facebook groups run by our fabulous admins.
The swims are informal meet ups arranged by the people in the groups who have found connection through a love of cold water.
How to find your flock and join a swim:
Find your nearest group on the map above
Click through to their Facebook group and request to join
Once accepted, post to say hello, ask any questions and get ready to dip!
🏊🏻♀️ Join in any swim you fancy or even post one of your own
More information about our groups:
Each of our Facebook groups has an admin(s) who volunteers to run the Facebook group, they are not a swim host, swim coaches or trained lifeguards they are people that stepped up to start a group because they swam with a Bluetit somewhere and loved it so much they wanted a group near home. Our Social Swim Community wouldn’t exist without them!
Our swims are informal, a social occasion with friends and like minded people. There aren’t trained cold water swim instructors or lifeguards and everyone swims at their own risk, please make sure you are aware of the risks of cold water swimming and the risks associated with the sea, lake, or river that you will be swimming in. It is your own personal responsibility. Check out our Safety Resources for lots of helpful resources.
If you have health conditions you should check with a doctor before taking part in cold water swimming.
I would like to join you but I am not a strong swimmer?
Social swim gatherings are all about just getting into the water and enjoying the experience. Sometimes that’s jumping in the waves, swimming in a circle around a slipway, pootling out to a buoy 300 meters from the shore. It is not about distance or speed or swim strokes per minute. If you are nervous in the water make it known when you first come along and swim and someone will stick with you. You will soon find a regular swim buddy with whom you click with and then your confidence will soar.
Do I have to swim regularly?
No. All swims are informal gatherings, swim with your Bluetit friends once a month, every day, when you go on holiday and find a group to swim with and then never again… all up to you. You will be presented with a Bluetit badge when you have had a swim with a Bluetit… you will become a Bluetit yourself… it’s all just a bit of fun.
Can my children come along?
We are primarily an informal group of adults who come together to relax and enjoy our time together talking crap, setting the world to rights and enjoy our time in the water away from the constraints of work and home life. Occasionally if the swim is arranged for after-school time, in the holidays, or at weekends children do come along and partake in the swims with some groups. We have many badge-wearing fledgling Bluetits who bring a different element to the group dynamics and are a joy to have at the swims. Please check with your group if they are happy for children to come along any time or if they have special swims organised that are child friendly.
Unaccompanied youngsters under 18 years old are never acceptable at a swim.
Can I swim naked?
Please have a read of our guidance on skinny dipping here!
What do I need to bring when I first swim?
When it is cold then wear lots of loose layers. Jeans and leggings are not brilliant, jogging bottoms and fleece pyjama pants do a much better job… easy to drag on with cold hands.
Big socks and boots that are quick and easy to get on are a good idea and top it all off with a wooly hat, mittens, scarf, and coat big enough to cover all the layers.
Regular swimmers invest in waterproof robes with a fleece lining, and they are fantastic pieces of kit but not essential. Dressing after a swim in the winter is very much heads down and get on with it affair.
During the dressing process, there may well be unintentional moments of nudity and outburst of hysterical laughter as a result of the sheer frustration at one’s inability to get certain items of clothing on. Most don’t worry about getting bras and pants on after a swim, but if having those items reinstated is essential to your happiness then with determination you will work out a way… perfectly acceptable to approach a swimmer who is way ahead of you in the dressing process and ask them to pull, tweak, tuck and yank something for you.
If at first, this all seems a little daunting do not worry… practice makes perfect… and the sense of achievement you get from working all this out is bizarre.
Hot water bottles, clicky click hand warmer things also very good to bring along if you have them.
Some people like to wear swim hats, beach-type shoes, neoprene gloves, rash vest, nose/earplugs, fins… if any of these sounds good to you then go for it.
A drink of warm liquid and something to eat is a good idea to get your metabolism going after cold water immersion. They are also integral to the after swim chatter for most.
A bag that is easy to get into… lots of buckles and clips are difficult to operate with cold and possibly sandy hands.
Something to stand on when getting dressed. It’s very lovely to get your feet off cold sand, cold hard concrete, wet muddy grass, etc. A bin bag does the job, as does a portion of an exercise mat, a rubber-based bath mat, an old bit of carpet or a trug bucket. Once you have swum a few times you will get what we are on about and then you will find whatever it is that works for you.
When it’s warm the dressing process is not as urgent. If you are a wetsuit swimmer who is contemplating moving away from the dark side then initially it’s a good idea to think like the cold weather swimmers do as you may find you are a tad colder than you usually are after a wetsuit swim, or not… you will find this out for yourself of course. Summer swims often involve walks across the coast path, swims from one beach to another, and picnics, so rucksacks and tow bags come into play.
And of course, there’s our very own Bluetit Tow Float.
Bold Bluetit logo suits
Waterproof Changing Robes
Charlie McLeod, obviously, as we can provide Bluetit embroidered robes which we have tried and tested and found to be fantastic pieces of kit.
How can I get in touch with any other questions?
Click on the Facebook link and send us a message!
We are based in Pembrokeshire, Wales so please let us know where you are based when asking questions about swim info in your region.
Bluetit HQ x