Celebrity Santa Makes A Splash At The Park Club

Olympic gold medallist Duncan Goodhew presides over world's first aqua grotto


The Park Club

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A group of lucky children got to visit Santa in a very unusual location this week at the world’s first ever Christmas aqua grotto, built to encourage families to have fun and keep active by taking a dip during the holiday season.

Children received presents from a very famous Father Christmas - Olympic swimming gold medallist Duncan Goodhew, at The Park Club before taking the plunge in the British Gas aqua grotto with Santa’s well-known elves, six-times swimming world champion Mark Foster and Commonwealth synchronised swimming silver medallist Jenna Randall.

British Gas, the principal partner of British Swimming has constructed the aqua grotto to give children a festive fun day out with a difference, highlighting the health and fitness benefits of swimming to families at a time of festive indulgence.

On average Britons consume a staggering 5,551* calories during Christmas Day, nearly three times the amount of calories recommended by the Department of Health (1940 calories per day for women and 2550 for men).

Even a gentle swim can burn over 200 Kcal in half an hour and a fast front crawl can burn 400Kcal, the same as running at 8 miles an hour. So swimming is the perfect antidote to all that Christmas over-indulgence and it’s a great way of keeping active in a warm indoor environment, away from the winter weather.

Nutritional therapist and director of The Nutrition Coach, Kate Cook said: “Most people eat and drink more than they should over Christmas so it’s important that they also keep active. Swimming is an excellent way to do this. It can help people shift those extra pounds, is great relaxation at what can be a very stressful time and is a healthy activity for all the family.”

British Gas ambassador, Duncan Goodhew added: “I think the British Gas aqua grotto is a great idea. It’s an opportunity to combine the magic of Christmas with the fun of swimming to give these children an enjoyable day while taking part in a healthy activity.”

*(Source: 2006 Survey of 1,500 Britons)

December 15, 2010