Download any resources you may need to spread the word about your challenge and why you're fundraising for vital dementia research.
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How it all works
Got a question about Swimming Down Dementia?
We’ve got answers for you below. And if you still can’t find what you’re looking for, you can get in touch here.
Swimming Down Dementia is a virtual swimming challenge from Alzheimer’s Research UK, supported by Garmin.
We’re challenging you to get in the pool for dementia research: swim 10km (Pioneer), 30km (Epic), or a distance of your choice (Maverick) and fundraise between 1 September and 31 October 2021 to help to raise much-needed funds to make breakthroughs possible in dementia research for the 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK and their families.
If that’s not enough, when you raise £200 you’ll receive a free Alzheimer’s Research UK swimming cap and if you raise £400 you’ll get a jazzy Alzheimer’s Research UK top. Nice, eh? But if you can’t wait, then you can order yours here.
a. It’s easy! While following government guidelines regarding swimming and COVID-19, head to the pool or your favourite open water swimming spot and log all your swims on your Swimming Down Dementia account. So, first thing’s first: register here.
b. Choose how far you want to swim - and make sure it’s a challenge! Then choose your fundraising amount. (You can change both later if you hit your goals.)
c. Follow the steps to create your Swimming Down Dementia page, where friends and family can view your progress and sponsor you. If you have a tracking device, then make sure you connect your supporter page to Strava to make sure your activity is tracked. You can also manually add your lengths on your fundraising page.
d. Be sure to track or log every swim you do, whether it’s in your local pool, in the sea, or in a lake. It all counts!
e. Get swimming! If you’re looking for inspiration and motivation during your challenge, join our dedicated Swimming Down Dementia Facebook page: Swimming Down Dementia - TeamARUK
f. Check your progress on the leaderboards and see how you compare!
Nope, Swimming Down Dementia is completely free! We just ask you to set yourself a challenge that will push you, and ask your friends, family and colleagues to sponsor you so we can continue funding life-changing dementia research.
The Pioneer challenge is 10km and Epic is 30km. The Maverick option lets you choose the distance you swim - it's your choice (but make it a challenge!)
Yes! A team can be anyone you like: friends, family, work colleagues or your swimming club, please just make sure you follow social distancing rules if you swim together. When you register, you can create a team or join one if it’s already been set up. If you’re in charge of setting up the team, follow these simple steps:
1. Create a name for your team while you’re registering.
2. Once you’ve finished your registration and have set up your own team page, use the “Invite Members” button on your team page to send email invitations.
3. If someone else has set up the team, just search for the team name when you’re registering and you’ll be automatically connected once you complete your registration.
Company: If the organisation you work for has chosen Alzheimer’s Research UK as your charity of the year, select your organisation name from the drop-down at signup so your challenge will count towards your company total.
Team: teams are a great way to measure your kms and encourage a little friendly fundraising competition with people you know. Once you’ve signed up, visit your fundraising page and click "Create a new team" or "Join an existing team" on the right.
a. If you have a tracking device, then watch the following videos to see how to link your fitness app to your JustGiving page:
- Connecting your FitBit to Strava: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216918087-Fitbit-and-Strava
- Connecting your Apple Watch to Strava: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000161184-Strava-Apple-Watch-App-iOS
- Cnnecting your Samsung device to Strava: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/360018601971-Samsung-Gear-and-Strava
- Other workout data import to Strava: https://www.strava.com/apps/data-importer
b. If you don’t have a tracking device then you can add your lengths manually on your supporter page, just login to your fundraising page and add your swim on your activity feed.
Absolutely not! You can do it your own way – whether that’s doing lengths in your local pool every evening or wild swimming at weekends. However you choose to do it, it’s your challenge, your distance, your fundraising goal.
Yes, you can! You can buy one through our online shop, but if you raise £200 we’ll send you one for free!
a. 40 lengths in a 25m pool
b. 20 lengths in a 50m pool
Yes – we'd love for you to be involved again this year! We've changed platforms this year from Everydayhero to JustGiving (their sister organisation), so you'll need to set up a new fundraising page on JustGiving, but it will look very similar to your page from last year. We'd advise doing a short test run to make sure your accounts are set up correctly and that your tracker connected before you start your swims!
If you did the 10km challenge last year, then why not challenge yourself and do the 30km one this year? Or be a Maverick and choose your own distance.
No, unfortunately not as they are two separate challenges. But drop us an email at email@example.com and we can talk you through your options.
If you’re doing this challenge in a swimming pool, you’ll of course need the appropriate swimwear. You may also want some goggles and a swimming cap. If you are planning to do this challenge outdoors, then you may need a swimming wetsuit.
Despite its low impact nature, it is recommended that you warm up before swimming. A good warm up includes swimming some easier lengths before starting your main set. Using floats to get your legs and arms warmed up is a useful way to start. Additionally, swimming breaststroke, front crawl and backstroke lengths before your main set can help to warm up your whole body.
Yes you can, you just need to go to the fitness tracking area of your profile in order to update your challenge distance.
a. To make the most of your fundraising, we recommend you:
• Add a photo – so everyone can see your face!
• Set a target – we know that pages with targets raise more.
• Complete the ‘About me’ section – tell people why you’re challenging yourself for Alzheimer’s Research UK.
• Share your page – as far and as wide as you can using email and social media.
• Update – keep updating your page and sharing it throughout your challenge.
b. During Swimming Down Dementia we’ll be in touch regularly to help you make the most of your page and share extra fundraising ideas with you!
a. Dementia is one of our greatest medical challenges but at Alzheimer's Research UK, taking on a challenge is what we do best.
b. The money you raise will help fund our pioneering research programmes to make breakthroughs possible for people with dementia and their families. From people to pipettes and from Aberdeen to Exeter, every £20 you raise will power another hour of life-changing research.
c. You can find out more about what we do here.
There are loads of ways you can smash your fundraising target. Have a look at our fundraising page for some ideas to get you started. You can also join the Swimming Down Dementia Facebook group to meet and share your story with others. You can also download a sponsorship form from the top of this page if you'd prefer to collect cash donations, which you can then add to your fundraising page.
Sharing your story is a great way to raise awareness of your challenge, Swimming Down Dementia and Alzheimer’s Research UK more widely.
If you have been affected by dementia or are taking on your challenge in an interesting or different way, the press may be interested!
We have an easy to use press release and guide, available at the top of this page. Simply follow the instructions to contact your local paper with your story. If you need support with this then please get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Donating through Gift Aid means we can claim an extra 25p for every £1 you donate to our life-changing research. It won’t cost you any extra but will make a big difference to what we can achieve with your support. Please note, you must be a UK taxpayer to enable us to claim Gift Aid.
We're pleased to announce that Garmin has become the official sponsor of our sporting events for the next three years, which also includes the Treble Challenge. We will work together to help reduce people’s risk of developing dementia by encouraging them to make positive lifestyle changes.
JustGiving is the platform that's the home of our Swimming Down Dementia website and fundraising pages. We've been working with JustGiving (everydayhero before) for a number of years with fundraising pages across our sporting events.