Due to the coronavirus pandemic that has forced the closure of gyms, beaches, and other public places and necessitated staying home as much as possible, many of us have been cut off from the water. And let’s face it: the water is our happy place, and this can be really depressing. It’s a particularly rough blow because we’re all dealing with extra stress and anxiety because of the situation. But there are plenty of options for staying connected to swimming during the COVID-19 outbreak that can help boost our spirits and keep us feeling optimistic.
These tips are also useful at other times when you can’t swim for a prolonged period, like when you’re recovering from an injury or busy traveling.
Staying Connected to Your Swim Life when You Can’t Swim
- Keep in touch with your swimming friends, teammates, coach, etc. Talking on the phone or video chatting can be more enjoyable than texting, especially during times of social distancing and sheltering in place.
- Go for walks or runs with a swimming buddy or two. Maintain a distance of at least 6 feet between everyone at all times (and don’t shake hands!). Also, do not go out if you’re experiencing any fever, cough, respiratory symptoms, or other signs of illness, and until you’ve been cleared by your doctor after experiencing any sickness.
- Join one or more forums on social media sites or other websites that are devoted to swimming.
- Keep on top of your fitness. Make sure your routine includes some dry-land exercises that are highly beneficial to swimmers.
- Read books, articles, and websites about swimming; watch swim instruction videos online.
- Be around water if you’re able to go out and have a nearby option. This could mean taking walks along a lake or river, kayaking, or other activities available to you. Just being near the water—seeing it and hearing it—does the swimmer’s spirit good!
- Take a bath. It might sound silly, but if you really miss the water, get in it and move your hands and feet around. Feel free to put on some soothing music, maybe light a scented candle in the bathroom, and just soak and relax for a while. We all have to do more to manage our stress and anxiety right now.
- And speaking of, take care of your mental health. Remember that social distancing doesn’t mean cutting off from friends and family. And be proactive about managing stress and anxiety related to the outbreak.