Pier to Pier swim Bournemouth

Motion sickness – she’ll grow out of it.

Well 48 years later having tried every drug, herbal remedy, bands, patch, ginger biscuits, looking at shore, staying drunk, etc apart for putting myself to sleep nothing has worked.

On Sunday I took on my second seas swim, the first was last month in Tenby for LCW and on the 30 minute mark I lost my lunch.

This time I was swimming in Bournemouth for a charity swim organised by British Heart Foundation, BHF. The swim is from Bournemouth Pier to Boscombe pier a distance of 1.4 miles.


First time I’ve been to Bournemouth and I was very impressed with the cleanliness of the beach, the clarity of the water, the amount of marine life and the fine sandy beach. Plenty of parking which didn’t cost an arm & a leg either. Didn’t like the look of a local jellyfish I saw on the beach whilst walking to the start, luckily didn’t see any in the water and didn’t get stung this time like Tenby.

Local jellyfish, luckily did see any in the swim
Local jellyfish, luckily did see any in the swim
There were two wave starts 10am and 12 o’clock, I was in the second, red hat swim. We could get in the water to get acclimatised,   a beach start after briefing and start horn blew.

There was  huge amount of safety crew on the water from paddle boasts, kayaks, inflatable boat, RIBS and the RNLI on land. We all wore an ankle timing chip and were tagged going into and out of the water. Excellent safety cover.

With Bournemouth pier to our right and zip linners whizzing from pier to beach we went through the start flags out sea. Heading away from shore past the wooden sea defence groynes it was then a west to east swim to Boscombe pier which could just about be made out on the horizon.


At the start the sea was relatively calm, the sun was shinning and I was watching the crabs scurry along the sea floor and small fish in shoals and big fish just eying me up but enjoying the swim and the passing cliff scenery. The beach huts changing colour and shade as we went along, the cliff railway going straight up in comparison to the hairpin zig zag road.

Two thirds of the way down and a swell began to form – ugh. I drifted inside a couple of groynes so had to readjust and swim out to sea more. Each time I thought I was at  the last post on the end of the groynes another seemed to appear between me and the pier. Never ending.

30 minutes after the start my body had enough of the motion and time to feed the ocean.
I did have a dry practise about 20 minutes in but held on. Annoying as I could see the finish pier and only had 6 more minutes to swim.

Feeling queasy I finally saw the red finish flags on the beach next to the pier and was glad to turn to shore and walk out to get my medal. Huge crowds were at the finish but also clapping and cheering us from the beach as we swam the 1.4 miles / 2275m

I finished in 36:45 one of my best swim paces yet. Ironic that I swim better in saltwater but how it affects me so much. May have to take sea swims off my list of future ironman races.



We were provided with a hot drink and bottles of water, my coffee didn’t taste so good possibly from the salt water dripping into it so kept water for a while. Bag collection and fresh water showers all within a few meters.

I ended up driving home in my swimming costume as I dropped my pants in the shower !

A great event for a great charity, this one was again for my Dad.

For my Dad Message on back of my marathon t-shirt
For my Dad Message on back of my marathon t-shirt


  1. Well done!! Don’t like the sound of seasickness while swimming! I like swimming in the sea … but only when it’s calm! Great pace too!!

    • The motion sickness is annoying as I seem to have a good sea swim pace. Have spoken to another triathlete who has suffered the same and he has given me plenty of good tips to try.

  2. Congrats! I hope you don’t mind if I ask a horrible / stupid question…. If you throw up while you are swimming, are you then swimming through your vomit?! How do you throw up while swimming without drowning?! I just can’t imagine it….. I haven’t done any sea swims before and have been lucky enough to only swim in pretty calm lakes. Also – is that jellyfish real?!!

    • Yes the jelly fish real but only saw them in the beach not in the water

      When being sick this time I tried to keep floating on my front as if swimming and was sick to the side as if I was breathing. Then rolled onto my back so I didn’t take in sea water. You soon float away from it. I kept my arms down so I didn’t accidently get rescued

      Last time I stopped swimming, threw up but then swallowed a mouthful of sea which made me throw up again !

      When you carry on swimming you wash yourself off I then had a fresh water shower & rinsed my wetsuit when I hit out the sea

      Becoming an expert in how to swim & be sick !!
      Got one more sea swim to try this year then maybe it’s lakes & rivers for me 😃🏊

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