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How to swim safely under a full moon

Swimming under a full moon isn’t just an exhilarating way to experience a different side of outdoor swimming, it’s also beneficial for our health. In her book Saltwater in the Blood, Dr Easkey Britton comments:

“Exposing ourselves to moonlight can regulate our hormones and cycle, changing levels of melatonin that help regulate our sleep cycle. We are creatures of light and darkness, evolving our way of life around the cycles of day and night, the light and dark of the circadian rhythm, long before artificial lighting.”

There’s something so special about seeing the light of the moon reflected in the water and its silvery path through the water, and the stars are usually brighter by the water thanks to the lack of light pollution.

If you’re planning a full moon swim this month, here are some tips to keep you safe when swimming at night:

Be seen

Make sure you can be seen by your fellow swimmers. A torch or bicycle light inside your tow float, a head torch or safety lights clipped to your goggle strap or costume will make you visible.

Light it up

Light up your entry and exit points so you can easily make your way back to shore.

Know your way

Air temperature will be colder at night. Don’t stay in the water too long and make sure you know your way back. It’s a good idea to stick to a familiar spot for your first night swim.

Pack generously

It’s always a good idea to pack extra layers and a torch to get changed with afterwards.

Dips not distance

Especially in the cold, keep your swims short and close to shore.

Never swim alone

Always have a swim buddy in case one of you gets into trouble.