Swim and glow in winter

What is it that gives winter swimmers that glow? I asked myself this question again, when I saw healthy and invigorated swimmers in The Finnish Winter Swimming Championships in Ähtäri. There are many answers to that question, both scientific and experiential. One professor has said: “Lack of ‘thermal exercise’ may cause inadequate functioning of the brain.” A cold dip is a trigger, a positive stress to swimmer’s body and mind. This so called eustress helps you to maintain and improve your … Read More

Winter swimming adventure in Kainuu

It’s been a while…so this is looking back to last February and March, which I spent in Kainuu area. I was volunteering in an international artist residence called Mustarinda. The location is the second snowiest place in Finland, and I surely did some hard-core snow shovelling on the roofs and in the yard…but I really loved it! Recent winters in southern Finland have been with so little of snow, so it was great to experience loads of it. It was like … Read More

Swim Tour – Part 3. Lake Päijänne National Park

There’s ice cover on lakes now  – so it’s perfect time to think back last summer’s swim tour in July! After saying goodbye to Samuli in the Arctic Circle, I flew back to Helsinki with Jonathan. And then Tuomas, a marathon-swimming pioneer in Finland, picked us from the airport and we drove to Padasjoki by Lake Päijänne. After almost two hours’ ride (160 km), we met Paula and Ismo, who welcomed us to the beautiful location of Villa Takila holiday apartments. Wow! … Read More

September Swim

After walking the trail around Lake Iso-Melkutin with my friend and having a quick dip in the lake, I had to come back for a longer swim. Iso-Melkutin is nice, green and clear ground water lake not so far away from my home. There are no summer cabins, no motorboats and it feels like there’s only wilderness around you. But there’s a sports aviation centre nearby the lake, but somehow the whole area is tranquil. Lake Iso-Melkutin is divers’ favourite spot, it’s … Read More

Swim Tour – Part 2. The Arctic Circle

After experiencing urban entertainment at Allas Sea Pool and Löyly in Helsinki, we flew to Kemi/Tornio with my British guest to take part in Swim the Arctic Circle event on Saturday the 16th of July. Anne, a brilliant lady from the Juoksenki village and a event volunteer, fetched us from the airport. On the way to Juoksenki, we stopped at Aavasaksa, Lapland’s oldest tourist destination. Up on the Aavasaksa Hill we visited an old hunting cabin, built in mixed style and with Carelian … Read More

Swim Tour – Part 1. Helsinki

Allas Sea Pool Photo credits: Pool photos by Marinetek Finland Oy, skyhard.fi I hosted a swimming enthusiast from London last week. And what a week it was! We started our tour together at Allas Sea Pool.  This unique complex is situated in the heart of the city by the Helsinki Market Square. Allas offers opportunities for swimming, sauna, eating, exercise and culture. Swimmers welcome floating swimming pools and round-the-year swimming with warm water and open ice pools. Allas is part of a larger trend … Read More

Windy June

After very warm May, windy days in June have turned waters upside down and surface temperatures in lakes are now 14-17 °C in Southern Finland. So I jumped in my wetsuit and swam a short swim with hand paddles in Lake Lohja, my home lake. Visibility in greenish gray water wasn’t that good, just a length of a biceps, to quote Colin Hill’s (Chillswim) description of water in Lake Balafon in Hungary, where Marathon Swimming Wolrd Cup was held this weekend. I … Read More

Day 31 – Final day thoughts and final swim

May was extraordinary warm in Finland, so I was lucky to be able to enjoy swimming without a wetsuit almost the whole month. I swim also in winter, so I’m familiar with cold water. But it was so wonderful to swim a bit longer (than just to dip) in sunny weather and warm waters in May! I didn’t bother to stress about blogging. So I kept lines short and hoped photos and videos gave some sense of the swimming locations … Read More

Day 30 The Folk Park of Saari

The Folk Park of Saari is located in the Häme Lake Uplands and it was founded in 1932. There are high ridges and 13 lakes and ponds in the area. I went to Lake Suujärvi, a clearwatered lake with small diving tower, with my daughter. We’ve been here before, so we knew water would be chilly in this ground water lake. And so it was, around 14-16 °C. Only two-three meter wide neck of land separates Lake Suujärvi from Lake Kuivajärvi. These lakes are … Read More