There is something very soothing about gliding through the water, making swimming a perfect way to relax and escape busy uni life. It has great benefits for boosting your mood, reducing stress and helping with sleep. With a variety of strokes, swimming allows you to work your whole body, building strength and stamina whilst being one of the most gentle sports, especially for those with disabilities or minor injuries (disclaimer: you should always seek medical advice before exercising with injury or disability). This is because water supports 90% of the body’s weight meaning there is less stress on joints. If you fancy giving swimming a go, Exeter Uni has two societies which may be worth considering. For those who are completely new to swimming, St Luke’s Swim School offers adult lessons to help you get started.
EUSC has close links with the university’s Athletic Union as well as Exeter City Swimming Club. Sessions are held on St Luke’s Campus, Pyramids Leisure Centre and, during the summer, the outside pool at Cornwall House. The society caters for all abilities and offers coaching at every level. Each session has a different focus from building endurance to improving techniques and there is freedom in which session(s) you chose to attend. More competitive swimmers can take part in an annual training camp in Cardiff and there are also opportunities to partake in BUCS competitions as well as chances to represent the university abroad. For those who want to take a more relaxed approach, with over 200 members, it is a perfect way to meet like-minded students. In addition to swimming, the society holds weekly socials, hosts charity events, and has its own intramural netball team.
For the slightly braver, EUOWSS maybe of interest. EUOWSS holds weekly Sunday swims in Dawlish Warren (only around 15 minutes away from Exeter St Davids by train) but is flexible with attendance so if you prefer a dip on a warm spring day as opposed to a chilly January morning, you can tailor your experience to what makes you most comfortable. Open water swimming can help with immunity, brain functioning and decrease blood pressure, cholesterol and fat deposition. It is also a brilliant social activity with a strong sense of community. Furthermore, membership is free so there is no excuse not to give it a go!