Girl wild swimming
Girl wild swimming

Cold Water Swimming: Benefits & Tips 


The revolution that is cold water swimming has taken the nation by storm in recent years, leading many people to wonder why they should get involved - and how they can get started.



Benefits of Cold Water Swimming

Is cold water swimming good for you? For anyone nervous about taking the plunge, the answer to this question could be a game changer. From increasing your tolerance and lowering stress to boosting self-esteem, cold water swimming can positively impact our health in a variety of ways.      

Mental Calm

Girl in water

Mental Calm

You’ll be able to enjoy an escape from the repetitive nature of everyday thoughts. What’s more, cold water swimming helps build resilience by promoting mental strength and capacity.

Zipcar member Ella shared her love of cold water swimming with us, stating “what I love most about cold water swimming is that it's one of the only activities that allows me to be completely in the moment and switch off from all the worries of the day ahead. When the water is so cold, there's no way your brain can think of anything else other than to keep moving.”

Supports Immunity

Man in icy water

Supports Immunity

Cold water swimming can help support immunity and decrease inflammation. There’s even evidence emerging that cold water swimming could slow the onset of dementia.

Improvements to Overall Fitness

Man swimming with a buoy

Improvements to Overall Fitness

A further health benefit of cold water swimming is that it’s a great way to shake up your workout routine. Low impact swimming is great for our joints and circulation.


Endorphins & Dopamines

Lady in icy water

Endorphins & Dopamines

Cold water swimming also stimulates the “pleasure chemical,” giving you a reassuring and pleasant feeling.

Cold Water Swimming Tips

It’s good to know how to swim in cold water, so we’ve put together some top tips to help you get started.      

Don't Swim Alone

Group going wild swimming

Don't Swim Alone

Remember, never swim alone. It’s always a good idea to go with a friend or - why not sign up to a community swimming group?

Learn How to Prepare

Lady getting dressed on a beach

Learn How to Prepare

Tips from experienced swimmers can help you avoid cold water shock. These include splashing your face and body with water before you get in, and slipping into the water gradually. Here’s what a Zipcar member, based in Tottenham Hale has to say about getting started.

Veteran cold water swimmer Camilla’s top tips are to “research the area, especially if swimming wild, go with friends, start small and practice breathing”.

Consider Bringing Some Kit

Prepared swimmers running into water

Consider Bringing Some Kit

Most swimmers recommend investing in a silicone swimming hat (or maybe two) to help preserve body heat. It’s also a good idea to bring flip flops, a towel or dry robe, and why not a flask of hot tea with a snack for after you’ve dried off! Of course, none of these are necessary - you don’t need specific cold water swimming equipment.

Swim in safe areas

Life buoy on water

Swim in safe areas

Choosing somewhere safe to swim is important. If you’re looking around London, we have this handy guide that can help you.

Where to start?

With this knowledge, you’ll be ready to dive into the world of cold water swimming. Interested in where to start? - click here to learn about some of the great places to go for a dip in London.

With a place in mind, all you’ll need is a ride. Why not book a Zipcar - you won’t even need insurance, it’s all covered for you. With a Zipcar booking, your cold water swimming adventure isn’t far away.

Book today

More from the blog

To stay up to date with the latest news, advice and tips from Zipcar visit our blog.

Food truck for Immersive & Unusual Dining Experiences in London

Immersive Dining Experiences in London

 Discover the most unique London restaurants to suit every budget, from immersive eateries to non-traditional dining experiences.

zipcar electric flex

Trying an EV for the First Time with Zipcar

Thinking of renting an EV? Find out more about how an electric car works and how to try one out with our electric car hire services.

zipcar next to park

LTN's in London

LTNs are designated areas that reduce traffic, noise and air pollution through physical changes to street access or by enforcing fines for unauthorised access.

Cheese selection

The best cheese shops in London

During the winter months, is there a more indulgent way to enjoy a night in than with a cheese board?