Cool ‘healing waters’ wash away pandemic anxieties 00:00

Here, Now

Cool ‘healing waters’ wash away pandemic anxieties

A bracing dip weekly in the 40- to 50- degree waters off the Chesapeake Bay provides an outlet for a small, but determined, group of swimmers from the Washington, D.C., area.

An informal group of mostly women from the Washington, D.C., area has gathered every week, sometimes several times a week, since the beginning of the pandemic to swim in the cold waters of Chesapeake Bay. 

A dip in these waters, at 40- to 50-degree temperatures, is certainly bracing and can be dangerous — hypothermia is a distinct possibility. But this group of regulars say they do it for a number of reasons: some are preparing for long-distance swims in similar climes, but the challenge of finding joy in this time of Covid-19 is the biggest draw. They say it makes them feel “alive,” makes them part of a community, and helps to push back the pandemic fatigue.

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Mike Schuh

Here, Now

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