This week, eight swimmers representing IISA Great Britain travelled to Glogow, Poland to compete in the 4th IISA World Championships. The results for team GB were phenomenal, with new world and GB records smashed.
The three day event saw exceptional efforts from all swimmers, with Caroline Saxon setting a new age group world record in both the 1000m and 500m events. She also set a new female GB record in the 1000m of 14:25:89. James Leitch also set a new Male GB record, beating his previous record swimming the 1000m in a very fast 12:45:33.
The water temperature was marginally above 3 degrees and the competition was held in a purpose built 25 metre 10 lane pool in the marina of the River Oder. The set-up had a sauna and two hot tubs for recovery afterwards.
Every race, the swimmers are paraded down to the pool edge and given the commands ‘take off your clothes’ and ‘get into the water’. Once every swimmer’s shoulders are under the water, feet on the wall and holding the entry steps, the starting klaxon is sounded. Safety belts are required by all swimmers to ensure a quick rescue, if ever required.
Caroline Saxon said: “Ice swimming is a growing sport, and it was fantastic to have new members to the IISA GB team swimming so strongly, and records falling along the way by seasoned team members. Team GB’s medal haul was huge considering the size of the team.
It was so wonderful to be able to leave the country after two years of uncertainty, to be part of such a strong team and to strengthen and gain friendships which is integral to the sport. Special mention to our friends over the pond in Ireland who swam extremely well; we loved seeing you all again.”