October 31, 2020

Four hundred swimmers launch into the icy Vltava river in Prague



More than 400 swimmers from seven countries toured in three different modalities the cold waters of the Vltava River as it passed through Prague, in the 73rd edition of the traditional race “Alfred Nikodém”.

Since 1947, this race is celebrated every year – after Christmas Day – with swimmers of all ages, competing in three distances: 100, 300 and 750 meters.

The water of the Vltava was today at 5.6 degrees Celsius, somewhat above the level of 4 degrees to be considered “ice water”, which tests the resistance of bathers, this time coming from the host country, in addition to Slovakia, Poland , Belgium, England, Russia and Kazakhstan.

The competition, one of the main milestones of the Czech Cup in Winter Swimming, is named after Alfred Nikodém (1864-1949) as a tribute to the goldsmith and Czech athlete who first swam in the cold season on the Vltava River in 1923 , and was held this Thursday at an atmospheric temperature of 4 degrees.

The test takes place between two islands, the Isla de los Eslavos and the Isla de los Tiradores, and along the entire route there are groups of judges prepared to act in case of detecting hypothermia in the participants.

Many of them are members of the I. Tanning Swim Club, the most traditional one – it was founded in 1946 – and with about 220 active members.

Its partners practice this winter outdoor sport between October and April, as well as for fun, for practical reasons.

“Most of those who train regularly have already forgotten about the continuous colds and angina they used to suffer,” this Prague club explains on its website.

“The time you devote to training in general you recover with a lower incidence of disease,” he adds.

Many astonished spectators bet on the railings of the bridges and along the street that escorts the river, to admire the swimmers, who in groups were making contact with the water on the Slavic Island, in whose palace Zofin were The prizes delivered at the end of the contest.

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