Swim England

A nation swimming

I’m proud of steps we’ve taken to support the aquatics community in challenging time

Swim England chief executive Jane Nickerson reflects on the challenges facing the aquatics community during the coronavirus outbreak – and how the national governing body is helping its clubs and members.

What a week it’s been.

The swimming family, like the rest of the country, has been hugely impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

I wanted to share some of the steps we’ve taken, and are continuing to take, to support our clubs, members, staff, pools and the wider swimming sector during this challenging time for everyone. I’m proud of the way the Swim England team has responded to this unprecedented situation.

Of course it is a shame to see our events (and others, including the Olympics) either cancelled or postponed given all the effort from swimmers, coaches and clubs – but it is the correct decision given the situation.

We must all follow the latest health advice by staying at home and doing our bit to help reduce the burden on our hospitals and loss of life as a result of this pandemic.

Our wonderful NHS staff are doing an amazing job in extremely difficult circumstances and we are all truly grateful for their dedication and commitment to helping others.

We know that there is still much uncertainty around the future for many, and are working to support our clubs, members up and down the country and the wider industry.

That includes guidance and advice on staying fit and healthy – both physically and mentally. We’re creating training plans that can be used by athletes from all our disciplines and giving clubs tips on how to keep their members engaged.

Make sure you keep an eye on the Swim England social media channels for the latest content.

We have produced a document to answer some of the most frequently asked questions we’ve received and we’ll continue to update this as the situation develops.

Our Club Development Officers and other Swim England staff are still working. They remain contactable for direct support and we are in direct contact with clubs as well.

If you need to get in touch with us, our contact details during this time are here.

Alongside partners, we continue to lobby the government for additional support for the self-employed, which includes a large number of swim teachers, and continue to have discussions with Sport England around the potential support available for clubs.

Amongst all the uncertainty, and anxiety, it has been wonderful – but not at all surprising – to see the aquatics community come together over this past week.

For many of us, this will be the longest period we’ve been out of the water, which can impact on not just our physical, but also our mental wellbeing. However, I know that together we will get through this.

In the meantime, be kind to yourselves, stay safe and continue to follow the latest health advice.