"It hurts to the core, and I can't bend my fingers"

"I am afraid of being discouraged. I don't dare think too much about what I'm doing," says Johanna Sandgren.
"I am afraid of being discouraged. I don't dare think too much about what I'm doing," says Johanna Sandgren.

Norran is participating in this year's Winter Swim - and there are mixed feelings within the team. Before the competition, we went to Falkträsket to practice winter swimming. "It feels dreadful," said Lovisa Gustavsson just before her "training dip".

Skellefteå 9 februari 2024 16:00

Three reporters and an outsider - they will make up Norran's team in the Winter Swim 2024.

Putting together a team was easier said than done, but in the end, it will be Lovisa Gustavsson, Victor Svenfelt, the one writing this article (Johanna Sandgren), and Erik Gödecke, representing the newspaper during the competition weekend.

Andreas Westerberg has been winter swimming before and stresses the importance of calm breathing in the water.

Half of us had never swum or bathed outdoors in the winter before. That's why we decided to train - a short and intense session - with a dip in Falkträsket.

– I am definitely more scared than excited, says Lovisa Gustavsson as she gets ready.

So why are you doing this?

– To impress a guy... and a bit for Norran's sake. We have to be there and represent our paper!

Johanna Sandgren's first winter swim ever can be summarized as a rollercoaster ride.
Despite having cold feet, both before and after the dip, Lovisa Gustavsson plans to participate in the Winter Swim.

Andreas Westerberg, Norran's political editor, has already twice participated in the Winter Swim. As a result, he now bears the title of "Winter Swim Coach".

– Take a deep breath before you jump in, he advises.

Both Lovisa and I managed to dip ourselves in the water and stay in for a minute.

Afterwards, Lovisa doesn't seem to have changed her mind about winter swimming.

– It feels painful. It hurts to the core, and I can't bend my fingers.

Nevertheless, she says she will take part in the competition.

Johanna swam first, resulting in a frozen swimsuit.
Back in the editorial car, the whole gang was satisfied and happy. From left: reporters Lovisa Gustavsson and Johanna Sandgren, and Andreas Westerberg, political editor at Norran.
Winter Swim 2024

The Winter Swim opens on February 9 and runs until February 11.

The venue is Kurjovikens Havsmarina, Skelleftehamn.

Norran will broadcast the relays live on Saturday, February 10, starting at 13:30. The broadcast will also be available for viewing later.

The competition is organized by the association "Mörkrets och kylans glada vänner" together with the International Winter Swimming Association, IWSA.

On-site activities will be carried out in cooperation with the association "Kustnära utveckling".

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