What’s happening at this year’s Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival?

1St Wave Briefing

We’re proud to once again be working with Henley Swim to create a day of river fun at the Outdoor Swimmer Henley Swim Festival.

Starting with the swimming, there are events for all standards along this famous stretch of the River Thames. The swims take place directly after Henley Rowing Regatta, and the rowers’ booms are still in place, marking out a perfectly straight-line course down the river. For speedsters, there’s the club wave, with cash prizes for the top clubs. For the curious, there’s the suits versus skins challenge where you swim the course twice, once with and once without your wetsuit, to find out how much your wetsuit helps (or hinders) your swimming. There’s a women’s only wave, a half-mile wave and, for children 8-years and above, a 200m splash where a parent or carer can swim alongside, free of charge.

As in previous years, we will have our expo area complete with an endless pool where you’ll be able to sign up for a free video analysis session (limited places on a first-come, first-served basis, so get in quick). Then, new for this year, we’re adding a trial open water swimming area – a fully lifeguarded section of the river to either try outdoor swimming for the first time or test a piece of kit or simply cool off (it is of course going to be a glorious day).

Adding to the atmosphere, there will be live music from a local choir and commentary from BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Presenter, Ben Croucher, who will be hosting the event and interviewing swimmers throughout the day.

If you need to stretch out and unwind between or after swims, then pop along to one of the free yoga sessions, book yourself a sports massage, grab yourself some free “Green Cola” or order a pint from the local brewery, who’ll be setting up shop on the site for the day. There will also be healthy and hearty food concessions and a drinks bar.


And that’s not all!

With more than 20 plus swimming-related retailers on site (see below for those already confirmed), this would be the perfect time to replace some of your old kit. If you need a wetsuit for the day, 2XU will have them for hire. There will also be goody bags from Simply Swim and a sample station to collect more goodies. And for children, there is a craft tent.

We are also supporting the Big Jump, a European initiative to support rivers that will go ahead regardless of the outcome of Brexit negotiations. We will be playing our part with a big countdown and asking as many swimmers and spectators as possible to jump in the Thames at the same time! The safety crew will be on hand to keep everyone safe.

Finally, we are re-introducing camping to make it a true festival experience. Pitch your tent right by the riverside on Saturday to make sure you’re ready to swim bright and early the next morning.

Find out more and reserve your space (including camping)

(Note: prices go up at the end of April, so book soon!)

Confirmed exhibitors

  • Selkie
  • STA
  • Swim Quest
  • Aspire
  • Swim Tayka
  • SFT
  • Swimtrek
  • Nancy Farmer
  • Total Immersion / Possible Pools
  • Yonda
  • Green Cola
  • Simply Swim
  • Deakin and Blue
  • Thames Lido, sponsoring the Free Swim Area
  • Swimzi
  • Alida Herbst
  • Snugg
  • Dolphin Kick
  • Outdoor Swimmer
  • Henley Open Water Swimming (HOWS)
  • 2XU wetsuit hire
  • The Dorabros and Teenage Cancer Trust

Not convinced yet?

Cover June19

Issue 27 June 2019

  • How to swim in a straight line - very useful!
  • Swimming with a Bronze Age boat
  • How to overcome race day worries
  • Eco Heroes - Two minute beach clean
  • Love your local lido!
  • Comprehensive UK and international swim listings

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