The joy of winter swimming

Today we had a chat with Nikolai Potjomlin, personal Trainer and Physio Therapist at The Original F.X. Mayr clinic in Maria Wörth.
For two years he offers winter swimming in the Wörther See and besides a positive side effect when doing a FX Mayr cure, winter swimming is getting more and more popular.
The benefits are endless. Even if your body swims in cold water for just seconds for the first time, outside in nature you will feel firmer and your mind will become lighter. You forget your worries; you are very clear.
I always wanted to experience winter swimming and I think its the perfect time to start.


Read Nikolai’s tips on how to start, what to wear and watch out for.

  • Keep warm until you are ready to go into the water. Wear a down jacket, proper shoes and comfortable cloth on the way to the water.
  • Best is to start in autumn, not when it is already Icey and snowy. Or on a warm winter day.
  • Before you go into the water have a medical check with a focus on your cardiovascular health.
Keep warm with a puffer coat until you are going inside the water; Jacket by Woolrich.
  • Wear swim shoes or neoprene socks when going in, a swimming cap and if you like swimming gloves. The swimming shoes are important because the icy ground makes your feed stick easily on stones or ladders when coming out of the water, that can be painful.
  • Warm up before you go swimming in winter. Go for a run, a steady walk or do some push-ups before you go into the water.
    Take swimming gloves and if temperatures are low also swimming shoes.


  • Wear your warm cloths all the way to the waterfront and just take them off when you are mentally ready to go in.
  • Go in quickly and first up to the knee, take some cold water into your hand to refresh your face, arms and stomach before you finally go in.
  • The first time you should not swim, just go into the water stay no longer than 5 seconds and go out. Try to control your breathing and do not move too much, like this you are losing energy too fast.
  • Swimming in cold water brings up endorphins and makes you feel great but watch out you might feel warm and able to swim out further. Do not do that, just be happy with how you feel and get back out of the water, especially when you are a beginner.
  • 2nd – 5th time do not swim away further from the boarder/ coast, you should always be able to step out fast and easy.
  • Once you are out of the water get dry quickly and wear something warm, bring hot tea to warm up quickly from inside. Do not just stand still but either walk back home or do some exercises so your body gets back to normal temperature quickly.

Enjoy, it is an incredible experience.

Cover up quickly when coming out of the water and walk back home or exercise to get your circulation and blood pressure balanced again.