Endurance sports, extreme sports – whichever term you prefer – are in ever-increasing demand, and a new one is set to arrive in Britain in 2016.

Swim Run joins long list of popular extreme sports

The popularity of events such as Tough Mudder, Spartan Racing, triathlons, ultramarathons and fell running demonstrate a palpable growing enthusiasm for physical challenges with a difference. Another sport new to the UK in 2016 –  the enigmatically titled Swim Run – is capitalising on this voracious new appetite for more natural challenges.

Swim Run is said to be a reaction to the hugely popular Triathlon. Triathlons undertake repetitive routes, and the equipment required can cost a small fortune. Swim Run avoids all of that – runs are scenic and off-road, and you swim and run in the same relatively inexpensive kit.

Swim Run grew from a drunken bet

Swim Run originated in Sweden in around 2002 when two inebriated Swedes had a bet to see who could run and swim across a cluster of more than 20 islands off the coast of Stockholm. It steadily grew, and by 2006 it had become a legitimate commercial race. It will arrive in the UK in 2016, with around a dozen events currently scheduled with the likelihood of more to come.

Races have several stages, meaning you have to change discipline between running and swimming multiple times. Participants have to carry (or wear) all equipment / kit they began the race with to the finish line, and due to safety measures most Swim Run competitions are played out in pairs or teams. This also helps to foster the camaraderie so prevalent in Swim Run.

Sometimes you might think you could have gone faster on your own, or you might feel that you’re holding your partner back, but this is just part of the race format. You have to adjust your mindset and put any ego to one side.

At the end of the race, your race partner is the only other person who really understands what you’ve been through. When you look back at the map, it seems incredible where you’ve been without stopping and without any wheels or boats!Rosemary Byde – The Guardian

Affordable and inclusive

Like Ultramarathons and Fell Running, Swim Run has a primal appeal – centred on escaping our increasingly mad and frantic lifestyles to the natural and unspoiled rural idyll on our doorstep. The lack of expensive gear is in keeping with the humble and natural environment in which Swim Runs take place – giving it a much more back to basics and inclusive feel.

2016 is going to be the year Swim Run takes off in the UK, and races are already slated for Loch Lomond, Snowdonia and other parts of Britain. Why not keep your eye on Swim Run UK’s website for information on events and get involved!


KUDOS is passionate about encouraging and supporting people from all backgrounds to get into sport at any level.


Both KUDOS custom swimming kits and custom swimming kits are designed to cope with the rigours of the sport, in matching styles across all garments – including swimming team tracksuits, swimming kit, team hoodies and more.


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