Wednesday, June 08, 2016

David Carry in his element as our Swim Social Ambassador

“We’ve had over a thousand people take part in our Swim Social programme in the last few months and I know events like these are perfect for anybody of any standard of swimming who wants to try something different" - David Carry

Scottish Swimming’s 'Swim Social' Ambassador, David Carry is in his element at events like our recent open water 'Come and Try' event at Falkirk’s Helix Lagoon. 

It’s been four years since the Commonwealth Gold Medallist retired from competitive swimming and since then he’s been inspiring people at all ages and abilities to be better swimmers.  His excitement for swimming comes across the second you ask him a question and lots of swimmers at the event took the opportunity to get some hints and tips from the 2012 London Olympic 400m freestyle finalist. 

David says, “We’ve had over a thousand people take part in our Swim Social programme in the last few months and I know events like these are perfect for anybody of any standard of swimming who wants to try something different.  That range of skills is one of the most exciting parts of 'Swim Social' events – you don’t have to hit a certain standard before you can take part.  It’s not about being the best; it’s simply about wanting to have a good experience in the company of like-minded people.”

For David, ability is not as important as mindset when it comes to approaching open water swimming.  He says, “It is really exciting to see people having the confidence to try something different.  You can tell from looking at everybody out there in the water that they are competent swimmers – it is great to see them taking these skills out of the swimming pool and into the open water.”

“Events like this are great at dispelling a lot of myths about what’s under your feet – we all have concerns about what might be lurking under the water when you’re standing at the side of a loch or river.  We’re here to dispel as many of these myths as possible, make sure people can experience open water swimming and teach skills that will make it safer for everybody at all levels. 

David says he’s really taken to open water swimming since retiring from competitions – not that he has much choice given his wife is two-time 10km open water world champion Keri Anne Payne.  In 2008 Keri-Anne won silver in the inaugural 10k marathon swim at the Beijing Olympics – it was one of the most memorable moments of the games and helped propel open water swimming further into the public imagination. 

David says, “With my wife being an open water swimmer it really opened my eyes to that different world and I remember the first time I tried open water swimming, I was struck by the sense of freedom you get from it.  It was literally a breath of fresh air.  We’re incredibly lucky in Scotland to have some of the most beautiful scenery you can imagine and being able to get in the water and see it from that point of view is very special.”

“Scottish Swimming has some amazing events lined up with some great coaching and if you are not able to attend a 'come and try' event, there are lots of clubs all over the country that can help.  I’ve not heard anybody here at the Helix today come out of the water and say anything other than they can’t wait to get back in.  Everyone has a smile on their face from the sense of achievement – Have a go at it and you might surprise yourself.”   

David was interviewed by Chris Kane.  To read more of our Swim Social Interviews/Blogs, please click here

Find out more about Swim Social, our Adult Swim Classes, Come and Try Events and Skills and Drills in your area here

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