Buxton swimmer praises pools reopening as way to improve mental health

A keen Buxton swimmer has relished the reopening of local pools and believes it has hugely helped her mental health struggles.
Suzie is thrilled to be back swimming and teaching again.Suzie is thrilled to be back swimming and teaching again.
Suzie is thrilled to be back swimming and teaching again.

Suzie Wheway is glad to return to the swimming pool after months of closure and has spoken out about the impact it has had on her mental wellbeing.

She said: “I loved the water as a kid but as I got older, I drifted away from it and decided to do other types of exercise.

"After a bout of post-natal depression after the birth of my youngest child I went back to the pool and that love of the water has led me to completely retrain as a swimming teacher.

Swimming is my thing. It’s my escape from normal, everyday monotonous life.

"It’s become my life and made me stronger as well as fitter, which in turn makes me feel mentally stronger too.”

Now able to get back in the water, Wheway said it felt amazing to return to her natural habitat.

She said: “I just had a massive grin on my face. I had been waiting a long time and it felt great to get back in. Swimming in the new normal was surprisingly simple, I booked my slot online and I turned up beach ready in my costume, changed, swam and then left again.”

Research in 2018 showed that for 1.4 million adults in England, swimming had significantly reduced symptoms of anxiety and depression.

These benefits of swimming on mental health will be more important than ever as we go into the winter months and the potential for further lockdowns.

Suzie added: “It’s great to be back swimming and teaching. It feels great to get back on pool side with the kids and do something useful once again.”

Suzie has shared her experience of life in lockdown and being unable to swim as part of the Love Swimming campaign by Swim England.

The campaign showcases the positive impact swimming has on the mental wellbeing of the nation.

To find out more about swimming facilities near you, visit swimming.org/poolfinder.

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