Water you doing? Megan shares why she is an avid wild-swimmer

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“You are just this wee dot in the sea and it makes the daily worries and stresses like ‘did I send that email?’ seem totally insignificant.”

Megan -blur

Megan Taylor is the SFRS National Community Safety Engagement Team Leader from Prevention and Protection.

For almost three years now she has been wild-swimming in Scotland’s lochs and seas and took up the hobby due to “the pool getting boring” and the health benefits.

She said: “It’s just that calming influence, you can lie on your back floating, look at the stars and it puts everything into perspective.

“You are just this wee dot in the sea and it makes the daily worries and stresses like ‘did I send that email?’ seem totally insignificant. When you come out of the water you have such a glowy, warm tingly feeling in your body and the biggest smile – it’s almost a superpower for the day."

Megan continued: “It gives me the confidence that if I can swim in a cold loch in Scotland I can do anything.

“It’s important to note though that open water can be dangerous and I never swim alone and will always take precautions.

“There are many swimming groups out there and I’d fully recommend trying these or going with an experienced wild swimmer and not doing this yourself. Unlike other sports anyone can get involved regardless of ability, the wild swimming community is really welcoming and inclusive.”

Now, the idea of swimming in Scotland’s waters in the middle of winter probably hasn’t crossed too many people’s minds but that is exactly what Megan is trying to change.

She said: “There are so many people who say ‘isn’t it cold?’ and of course it is - but that’s the whole point.

“Being cold isn’t a bad thing; it gives you headspace for those few minutes, you learn to become comfortable in the uncomfortable.

“When you are in the water your only thought is to regulate your breathing, stay focused and let the after-shiver pass. You feel grateful to be alive”

For information on how to stay safe while wild swimming visit: https://www.nationalfirechiefs.org.uk/Be-Water-Aware---Outdoor-swimming/73272

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