The Annual Polar Bear Swim
Winter swimming (zimní plavání) in Czech Republic
The event will begin at 8:45 with a presentation that will go until 10:00. From 11:00 the swimming will begin, with those swimming the 750 meter route starting at 11:15 and the rest swimming at 11:40. At 12:45 the results will be announced. The winners of the 750 meter route include three men and three women who will get prizes from the event sponsors.
Last year there was a record number of swimmers. The 290 men and women braved the river that had a higher than average temperature of 6.4°C. The fastest swimmer to swim 750 meters was Lenka Štěrbová who managed it in 9 minutes and 18 seconds. Out of the 84 participants of the longest route, 65 were men and 19 were women. A Czech-language calendar with winter swimming events can be found here.
Swimming in cold water is a popular sport that is said to be very healthy for the body if it is done correctly. Czechs are particularly keen on winter swimming, also known as polar bear swimming, and there is even a České otužilecké unii or the Czech 'Hardiness' Union. This club is brings together people who do long-distance swimming in extreme conditions as well as experienced 'Hardy' swimmers.
Anyone is welcome to join the club but it is strongly recommended to go to the doctor for a complex check-up and pass the stress tests. It is good to begin the training by taking cold showers in the morning starting at 30 seconds and build up the time to 3 minutes. It's best to begin taking cold in Spring time and begin swimming in rivers in the summer. It is the most common to start swimming twice a week. Those willing to join the club are warned that it is a dangerous sport and overestimating ones abilities can have serious health consequences and even death.
Many national traditions include participating in either winter swimming or a single polar bear plunge in a hole cut out of the ice. The health risks include shock if the person isn't used to being submersed in cold water. Shock can lead to hyperventilating which can cause drowning. Hypothermia is something that many fear when winter swimming, but the risk is minimum as it takes almost 30 minutes in zerow degree water for hypothermia to occur. There are also risks of cardiac arrest however this is unlikely if the person is healthy. Conditioning is a great way to build up resistance and experience more health benefits.
According to scientific studies, there are many health benefits to this sport. It helps reduce stress and fatigue as well as improve memory function and feelings of energy. It is also better for general health, including minimizing the chance of catching diseases, in particular in the upper respiratory tact. Even short term exposure to cold water relieves the body of stress.
When the pride of Prague football is at stake by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: Slavia Prague)
As the Czech capital unites in attendance of derby matches, it divides in allegiance
Roger Federer heading to Prague to promote Laver Cup by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: Laver Cup FB)
Recent Australian Open winner and Swiss tennis legend Roger Federer will be appearing in Prague on Monday (20.2)
Sokol turns 155 by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV
Slavic group is known for synchronized gymnastics
Plzen and Prague battle it out for Czech football superiority by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: AC Sparta Prague FB)
Plzen continue to push as Prague hosts big derby – Czech Football League preview
Sonka soars to victory in opening Red Bull Air Race in Abu Dhabi by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: Joerg Mitter / Red Bull Content Pool)
The 10th season of the official World Championship started with its anniversary 75th race
New ice stadium to be built near Skalka by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: Padok Investments)
Modern training center should open at the start of 2018
EL Preview: FC Rostov vs. Sparta Prague by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: AC Sparta Prague FB)
Sparta Prague returns to competitive football looking to reach Europa League last-16
HC Sparta Prague vying for European title by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: HC Sparta FB)
Champions Hockey League pits HC Sparta Prague against Frölunda Gothenburg
Cricket catching on in Prague by Ross Kennerley - Prague.TV (Foto: Czech Cricket FB)
There are leagues for all ages, and tournaments for accomplished players
Red Bull Air Race season takes off soon by Raymond Johnston - Prague.TV (Foto: Petr Hoffelner)
Two Czech pilots will be among the competitors in the upcoming championship
First Cobbler's Prague Bakery Cup Cake Shop @ PALLADIUM!
Take a guided tour to Sapa, Prague’s “Little Vietnam”
Finest Burgers - American Quality - NEW Location - Lesnická...
Prague City Tours in 23 languages!
HUGO Bike Prague & Segwaytrip
Outdoor Adventure Minigolf
Indoor Playground in Prague 5, Zlicin
Kotlářka Praha - American Baseball