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The value of swimming

In 2019 Swim England – the body which organises and promotes swimming in England – produced a report aimed at government suggesting that swimming saved the NHS £357 million per year.


Whether you find the figure credible or not, there were probably more than a few grains of truth in the stats the report contained about swimming as a health and well-being activity.

  • Swimmers report feeling on average 6.4 per cent healthier than non-swimmers – this is comparable to feeling 12 years younger.

  • Adults who swim were 4.3 per cent happier than non-swimmers.

  • Of the 4.7 million adults who swim at least twice a month, more than half (2.7 million) are women. The report highlights how swimming particularly benefits women and girls, more than doubling their self-confidence.

  • 1.4 million adults feel that swimming had significantly reduced their symptoms of anxiety or depression.

  • The 1.88 million children aged 7-16 years in England who swim rate a “higher feeling of life being worthwhile” compared to those who didn’t.

  • Whilst in the 12 months up to November 2019 14 million adults went swimming, the benefits to the nation could be even greater if progress can be made amongst the 1 in 3 adults in England that cannot swim.

  • Swimmers are more likely to be socially connected – and 26.7 per cent less likely to have no friends compared to non-swimmers.


These are big claims and Swim England went on to say that more GPs should be encouraged to prescribe swimming as part of a healthy routine.


A later report into the potential role of swimming in the government’s levelling-up agenda talked about the pride people feel in their community when they have a swimming pool.


Bath, of course, is blessed with several and the whole nation, not just our home city, felt pride in the achievements of the swimmers based at Team Bath during the Tokyo Olympic Games last year.


Did you know, however, that the pool at Team Bath is open seven days a week to members of the public of all abilities?  This month and next we’re running a “make Saturday or Sunday your swim day” promotion as we have good lane availability from 12-3pm on those days when parking is also readily available on site.


Why not give it a go and see if you feel the same as the millions quoted in that Swim England report.


Team Bath sponsored by Rengen, is the overall name for the sports activities taking place on the University of Bath campus which covers everything from tots taking first steps in sport to elite athletes training for major events. We are open to the public seven days a week.  

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