Safety guidelines & FAQs

Saftey Guidelines 

We have a number of videos put together by cold water swimming coaches Jude Palmer and Paul Mackenzie on how to complete your Santa Splash safely.  We strongly encourage all participants taking part in both the virtual and physical event to watch these and read our FAQs before taking part.

Remember, you safety is the main priority! Please think carefully about when and how you complete you Santa Splash and ensure you put your safety first.

Suggested Venues

We advise all participants taking on their own Santa Splash to choose a location carefully and opt for a lifeguarded venue.

You can browse through Swim England, Scotland and Wales database of open water swimming venues to find your local site.

    Swim England Open Water

    Scottish Swimming Open Water 

    Swim Wales Open Water

    Got a question?

    Have a look through our FAQ’s below and if you can’t find the answer you are looking for, email or call 01372 587 140. We are here to help!


    Is there an age limit?

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    We welcome participants aged 16 years and over. However, anyone aged under 18 will need to be accompanied by an adult when completing their Santa Splash.

    Can I take part with family and friends?

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    We advised participants taking on a virtual Santa Splash to have someone else with them. This will not only make it funner but will also make your Santa Splash safer.

    For those joining our live Santa Splash, there will be a club house where spectators can keep warm and cheer you on. Any children attending must be accompanied by an adult at all times.

    Can I take part if I have a health condition?

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    A cold water challenge isn't for everyone and your safety is our main priority. 

    If you are pregnant, suffer from heart disease, high blood pressure or lung conditions, have asthma, or any other medical conditions that might be affected by exposure to cold water we advise you consult with your Doctor before registering for this event.

    Can I take part if I am not a confident swimmer?

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    Virtual Santa Splash

    If you are not a confident swimmer, we advise you take part in the Virtual Santa Splash by either taking ice baths or cold showers for the month! 

    Do not take part in open water and if you visit a lido, be sure to stay within the shallow end and let the lifeguard know. You are responsible for your own safety when taking on our Virtual Santa Splash, so please be sensible and think carefully as to whether this event is right for you.

    Papercourt Sailing Club Santa Splash

    At our Santa Splash at Papercourt Sailing Club we will have cold water swim coaches and lifeguards guiding you into the water and will help you to complete your Santa Splash safely.

    If you are not a confident swimmer, you will need to let us know upon regsitration and you would stay within the shallows on event day.

    How long should I stay in the water?

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    The latest research shows most of the benefits of cold water will be felt in the first 2 minutes and beyond 10 minutes of immersion there are minimal additional benefits. So, we do not advise staying in any longer than 10 minutes maximum. 

    When it comes to cold water swimming, longer does not equal better. Please listen to your body and remember your health and safety is the priority. 

    What kit should I bring?

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    We advise all participants to bring a dry robe and towel, swimmers, a swim cap, warm hat, gloves and socks, warm layers to put on afterwards, crocs or slip on shoes.

    Can I take part in fancy dress?

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    The event is called the Santa Splash and we encourage Santa hats to be worn. 

    We do not encourage participants to wear any fancy dress in the water which may affect their ability to swim. So, strip off and leave those Santa suits on land!

    Will there be showers?

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    Bring clothes to change into afterwards and your shower toiletries. 

    When will the fundraising rewards be sent?

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    We will send out rewards at the start of each week starting from 27 November 2023.

    Is there a fundraising target?

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    The Santa Splash is a charity event raising funds for veteran's mental health.

    We encourage all fundraisers to do the best they can and aim to raise £150.

    How do I set up a fundraising page?

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    When you register for Santa Splash, you will be automatically directed to setting up an online fundraising page.

    Share your fundraising link with your friends and family and see how many fundraising rewards you can collect along the way!

    How do I pay in offline donations?

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    If you have any offline donations, there are a number of ways you can pay your money in.

    Put the money into your bank account and then add this onto your fundraising page.

    Send a cheque made payable to “Combat Stress” to Race to Remember, Combat Stress, Tyrwhitt House, Oaklawn Road, Leatherhead, Surrey KT22 0BX. Please don’t send cash through the post.

    To pay by phone please contact us on 01372 587 140 or email or you can make a bank transfer straight into the Combat Stress account. Our account details are:

    Account number: 00100013

    Sort code: 60-00-01

    Reference: Your name/SS