Open water swimming: how to stay safe
Taking the plunge in open water can be dangerous but there are ways to minimise the risks, Kate Rew, the founder of the Outdoor Swimming Society, tells us.
在自然水域游泳戏水往往是很危险的，但是如果我们有一定的常识就可以减小这些危险性 。户外游泳协会的创始人凯特.德鲁告诉我们 。
Rew was speaking as news emerged that at least 17 Britons had lost their lives as a result of swimming in quarries and other open water spots during the current heatwave.
And it followed a spate of warnings about the dangers of open water swimming issued by police and the Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS).
Rew urged all those wishing to take the plunge in outdoor swim spots to follow clear safety guidelines and make sure they were informed about the places they wanted to swim in.
But she said that with water temperatures much warmer than usual, this was a wonderful time to explore Britain's many lakes, rivers and the sea."Like many sports such as hiking and snowboarding, open water swimming carries risks, but there are many ways in which these can be minimised," Rew said.
德鲁女士表示，夏季气温升高，在英国的自然湖泊、河流或是大海里游泳是很美好的 。“和其他户外活动，比如徒步、滑雪一样，在自然水域游泳也是有一定危险性的，但是只要我们遵循一些基本常识，就可以将危险最小化 。”
"With swimming there are tides and currents and water temperatures that have to be considered and you have to learn about your ability to function with those things."
“自然水域有很多特质，比如潮汐的涨落、水流的急缓以及水温的高低 。这些特质你必须知晓，同时要知道自己是否有能力驾驭自然水域的这些特质 。”
"Like many other sports, open water swimming can be done on different levels. There are safe ways of doing it that entail no more danger than swimming in an outdoor swimming pool."
Rew had the following advice for would-be open water swimmers:
* Don’t swim when drunk
* Don’t jump in without knowing depth of water
* Make sure you know about currents
* Find out about the swimming place before you get in – both by speaking with people who live locally and checking the Outdoor Swimming Society map
* Before going into the water, make sure you know where you are going to get out
* Swim close to the shore
* Swim with someone else
* Start off swimming modest distances and then build up
Rew said that a lot of difficulties associated with open water swimming came about because water temperatures in lakes, rivers and the sea tended to be considerably lower than in heated swimming pools.
"Plenty of people don't appreciate that when the water is cold the blood rushes to the core and at a certain point your arms and legs become useless and you can't swim out of danger. That can cause deaths."
"Even when the water is relatively warm, such as now, it can still be colder than that in heated swimming pools and people who are not used to it can still find it slightly shocking."
Open water – or wild swimming as it is also known - has surged in popularity as more and more Britons want to reconnect with nature and swim in beautiful settings free from the constraints of indoor chlorine-filled swimming pools.
Not only is it invigorating and inspiring, done with due caution, it is good for you – as the Prime Minister David Cameron demonstrated last month when ahead of the G8 summit in Northern Ireland he let it be known that he had taken a 6am dip in Loch Erne.
在自然水域游泳，只要注意安全，你可以尽情享受那份清凉和水带给你的灵感，对你的身心都有益 。正如首相卡梅伦形容自己对自然水域的热爱——上月在北爱召开八国集团首脑会议时，他早上六点就在厄恩湖里畅游了 。
Membership of the Outdoor Swimming Society has grown considerably since it was founded by Rew in 2006. Included on its website is a comprehensive interactive map highlighting the many outdoor places in Britain where it is possible to swim with practical information contributed by those who have tested them out.
"Of course there are risks, but life is a risk-filled activity," said Rew."You can't keep people out of the water when it is hot and with water temperatures in many places currently at between 16 and 20 degrees, this is an ideal time to explore outdoor swimming."If you do want to explore, start off by finding an inland beach on a lake or a river pool where water runs to shallow, find somewhere safe and family-friendly.
“自然水域游泳虽然有一定危险性，然而我们的人生就是这样一个充满危险的环境 。”“在英国，很多地方的水温已经达到16——20度时，这是享受自然水域的绝佳温度，你不能阻止大家下水的热情 。”
"Have a look at our wild swimming map and see where people recommend. Give it a go: even if you find it a bit bracing, you might enjoy it."