A regular at the lake and an ambassador for mental health awareness, Nicky Harper’s new online community in Clevedon, Clevedon Mental Health Swimmers, aims to bring like minded people together, for support and sport.
Nicky has just completed her third winter cold water swimming, after going along to the Winter Warriors events organised by Row Clarke in November 2018. “Row Clarke’s introduction to cold water was inspiring and inclusive and helped me get back to what feels like the real me.” says Nicky.
“I find the headspace I need to focus on the swim … it’s not taken lightly, it’s an extreme sport. I need to switch off the internal chatter, I make sure I make time to go … Goodness help all around me when I’ve not been for a week or so.”
Open water swimming has many benefits, including better sleep, improved circulation, increased metabolism, it can boost your immune system, improve your skin and release endorphins (painkillers produced by your body), which results in a feeling of wellbeing once you’re back on dry land.
Many of us have had a dip in Clevedon Marine Lake and experienced the “feel good” factor that comes with such an achievement. Now, Nicky has created a community online and by the lake that supports those who find this type of swimming beneficial when dealing with the difficulties life can bring.
Nicky is the local host for Mental Health Swims, a national organisation founded by Rachel Ash, which celebrates the healing power of community and cold water. Nicky has created a Facebook group for those in Clevedon, Clevedon Mental Health Swimmers. This group, started in Sep 2020 as part of the Mental Health Swims peer group, has since it’s beginning been adapted into more and will hopefully meet some of the needs of members as and when they need it.
For more information, contact #MHS via email@example.com