Swim with Dolphins

Swim with Dolphins

This post was written almost 20 years ago. Nowadays there are very few holiday destinations where you can swim with dolphins either in the wild or at water parks such as Aqualand in Tenerife. Dolphin Encounters are about as close as you are going to get!

In June  I’m off for a Dominican Republic Holiday.  At the age of 54 I really can’t believe I’m going to swim with dolphins.

All my life I’ve been terrified of water until I had adult swimming lessons in my late forties going on to take my ASA teaching qualification and then my national rescue award.  Never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d get to swim with dolphins but here I am 8 weeks away (More when I get back!)

I’m staying next year in Tenerife with a really great whale and dolphin trip from Los Abrigos Holidays

The Dolphin Swim at Ocean World looks fantastic and I’ve heard some very good report about how happy the dolphins are to swim with you.  Other people that have had the dolphin swim say what a life changing experience it is and how the dolphins seem to enjoy swimming with everyone.

So wish me luck and more on my Dolphin Swim experience when I get back.

Dolphin Pictures

Swimming With Dolphins

Depressed? Swim with dolphins

swimming holiday with dolphins
Taking a dip with dolphins can be a tremendous therapy for people with depression according to a study published on Saturday in the weekly British Medical Journal (BMJ).

Nature lovers – biophiles to give them their scientific name – have long argued that interaction with animals can soothe a troubled mind but this claim has always been anecdotal lacking the scientific data to back it up.

Seeking to find out more psychiatrists Christian Antonioli and Michael Reveley at Britain’s University of Leicester recruited 30 people in the United States and Honduras who had been diagnosed with mild or moderate depression.

The severity of their symptoms was calculated according to established yardsticks for mental health the Hamilton and Beck scales which are based on interviews and questionnaires with the patient.

No antidepressants

The volunteers were required to stop taking any antidepressant drugs and psychotherapy for four weeks.

Half of the group was then randomly selected to play snorkel and take care of dolphins each day at an institute for marine sciences in Honduras.

The other half was assigned to a programme of outdoor activities also at the institute that included swimming and snorkelling at a coral reef but without the dolphins.

Two weeks later both groups had improved but especially so among patients who had been swimming with the dolphins.

Measurable symptoms of depression in the dolphin group had fallen by half and by two-thirds according to the two scales – twice as much as in the non-dolphin group.

In addition a self-rating measurement of anxiety symptoms the Zung scale found a fall of more than 20% among the dolphin group compared with a decline of 11% among the non-dolphin groups.

“To the best of our knowledge this is the first randomised single blind controlled trial of animal-facilitated therapy with dolphins ” say Antonioli and Reveley.

“The effects exerted by the animals were significantly greater than those of just the natural setting. The echolocation system the aesthetic value and the emotions raised by the interaction with dolphins may explain the mammals’ healing properties.”

“Swimming with wild dolphins is illegal under the Federal Marine Mammal Protection Act, which states that it is unlawful for any person, vessel, or other conveyance to harass, hunt, capture, or kill any marine mammal. Even though it’s illegal to swim with dolphins, many people do it anyway.”

It is hard to argue that swimming with dolphins doesn’t have an affect on things but reading the above statement it seems to me that swimming with dolphins is only illegal if the dolphins are being harassed.  There are daily examples of people swimming with the beautiful creatures where they follow the boat and are only too happy to interact with people wanting to swim alongside them.  With the interest that the subject has, it seems to me that the dolphins have a better chance with our interaction than without it.

Swim with the Dolphins

Wild and Free Dolphins

Swimming with dolphins – what you need to know

Polperro Dolphin Swims: Swimming

Swimming with dolphins is an amazing experience that everyone should try to do at some point in there lives. There are some special areas where you can find these amazing marine mammals. A lot of those places are located in the Caribbean or at least close to the Equator, take a look at the most popular spots for swimming with dolphins around the world. Some of them might surprise you!  Read more

Swim with Us and Swim-Easy

This page is devoted to explaining the connection between

Swim With Us and

Gay Clarke


Irene Bouette


Written by Gay Clarke

I started swimming very late in life fighting a phobia and with a teaching background   eventually became a member of the Institute of Swimming Teachers and Coaches in 2001.  Shortly after I met Irene who was also working to overcome her phobia and we became friends.

In 2002 for the first time at the age of 50 I was able to enjoy a holiday without feeling left out because I couldn’t swim.

Since then we’ve come a long way working with many people to help them overcome their phobias and problems.  In August 2003 this website was launched the aim being to offer a low-cost solution for one-to-one lessons with the tutor in the water.  Although both Irene and I are really passionate about swimming and helping others it began as a hobby.

Within a year the website had grown in popularity and so had the number of enquiries.  It became clear to us that there were many people that were struggling in the water and  it had the potential of being far more than a hobby.  After taking legal advise we were faced with the choice of forming a legal partnership and all the costs that that entails or remaining as individuals.

There were many things affecting that decision but for me there were two main considerations.  Firstly I have ME (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome).  Much as I would like to see this evolve as a business if I push too hard I am likely to find myself having to stop all together.

More importantly our aim is and always has been to keep the cost as low as possible.  Once we begin to look at administrative overheads the costs begin to rise.

We have therefore decided to continue as individuals with Irene’s website being Swimming Lessons 4all whilst I retain Swim With Us.

Irene (who was also water phobic) and I remain good friends and no doubt those of you that book with me will often meet Irene and vice versa and of course if I am unable to help you in a given timescale Irene at Swim-Easy will no doubt do her best to oblige and vice versa.

This page is here in the hope that it will avoid confusion when people see the new look site at Swim With Us and also the brand new Swim-Easy  but please feel free to email if you are unsure.

underwater photography