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The Challenges Of Cold Water Immersion And Drowning

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

Nuala Moore is now developing courses to teach about the risks and challenges of the ice swimming world. The purpose is to educate and train swimmers and teams by increasing their curiosity onto the risks.

She will offer her next course on January 12th 2019. “We are embarking on a journey to educate swimmers, teams and event organizers about the risks of swimming in cold water. Following on from the Ocean Triple R Summit, we will offer The Challenges of Cold Water Immersion and Drowning in the ICE – Immersion Cold Emergencies Workshop, Module 1 at the WatNuerworld Dive Centre in Dingle, Co Kerry, Ireland.

From 9:30 am – 5:30 pm, Dr Patrick Buck will offer a one-day ICE Workshop Level 1. Levels 2 and 3 will follow in the coming months. This is a first course designed and tailored to open water, cold and ice swimming. All of our Ice Modules are accredited by Mountain Medicine (UK) and Rescue Emergency Care (REC) Ireland and Europe.

The Level 1 ICE workshop is tailored to all water users and aims to deliver a comprehensive understanding of the challenges for all who enter cold water either voluntarily through their sport or accidentally. It addresses not only how a human functions in cold water, but also introduces swimmer and casualty recovery techniques, hypothermic swimmer and casualty management and remote casualty care.

We will look at both the practical and application of all areas. We will include a cold water swim to both experience, analyze the outcomes and treat the swimmer remotely, especially focusing on the areas of afterdrop and Post Rescue Collapse.

Visual understanding is important for learning for not only management post swim, but also for recognition of the signs and symptoms.

One should never forget that entering and exiting cold water, particularly for swimmers, has the potential to negatively impact on their ability to function in many different ways. Understanding our physical limits is a prerequisite to safely achieving our goals.

Our team will also focus on real-life case studies, cold water injuries, risk assessment and goal setting.

The Ice Modules focus is on developing a thorough understanding of how a human reacts to cold water, how one can improve performance in cold water, the challenges they face each and every time we enter cold water and how to treat and manage a casualty suffering from a cold water injury such as hypothermia or drowning.

The Ice Modules also aim to create awareness of potential cold water dangers and to improve our safe swim protocols.”

The course topics include:

* Understanding the human body and how it responds to cold water immersion
* Understanding cold water injuries such as cold shock, cold water incapacitation and swim failure
* Understanding hypothermia
* Understanding the premedical requirements for cold water swimming
* Understanding the concepts of Afterdrop and Post Rescue Collapse
* Managing and treating casualties using minimal medical and survival equipment pre the arrival of better equipped medical teams
* Planning your swim/water activity as water and air temperatures drop
* Knowing the potential consequences of cold water swims
* Knowing your limits and that of your team
* Planning for remote and extreme swims-planning for equipment necessary
* Understanding the drowning process and treatment
* Basic Life Support
* Managing recovery post ice and cold water swims
* Duty of Care
* Preparing your safety equipment for remote events

Moore explains further, “This is going to be a brilliant day where we can focus on prevention, preparation, training and safety planning and in the event of an emergency you will be trained to approach decisions even novel ones in a educated manner.

This area is one of my passions. especially as our sport becomes more extreme, we increase our risks and therefore we must become more safety conscious and diligent.”

For more information, contact To register, visit here. For more information, go to

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