By Ryan Navaroli |Staff Writer|
Imagine yourself on beautiful Big Bear Lake looking around at the seven mile stretch of water, surrounded by the San Bernardino National Forest.
Now picture yourself having the opportunity to swim the entire length of the lake, but conveniently located on campus at the CSUSB pool.
Winter quarter challenges Coyotes’ endurance with the Student Recreation and Fitness Center’s Swim the Bear challenge. The Swim The Bear challenge is 497 laps that many participants attempt to accomplish at the CSUSB pool.
These seven miles will test participants on their competitiveness as they look to swim the equivalent of Big Bear Lake.
The challenge is not for the feint of heart as it can become extremely difficult to finish the long journey.
“Every year we hold this event. This challenge involves swimming seven miles, which is the length of Big Bear Lake. Our Swim The Bear event is a great way to promote our pool and aquatics. Not to mention a ton of fun,” said Marcos Ordaz, the Aquatics Supervisor at CSUSB.
According to the U.S. Water Fitness Association (USWFA), water exercise offers physical, social and mental benefits
that which include a healthier body, stress relief and help strengthen muscles while having a good time.
Swimming is a good way to relive stress and reduce the amount of tension that’s on yourself.
Potential participants have some flexibility to sign up and have time to take this challenge.
“’Swim the Bear began on Jan. 6 and ends on March 22. We like to keep the range of dates wide so many participants can get the opportunity to take on this challenge. We are expecting another great turnout of participants,” said Amanda Bryan, the CSUSB lifeguard.
Participants can sign up at the Student Recreation and Fitness Center Membership Services desk. Registration for the event is a small fee of $10 that includes a Swim The Bear T-shirt.
“Anyone with a membership to the CSUSB Recreation Center can sign up. That includes students, faculty, alumni and anyone with a membership. Each participant who signs up will receive a limited Swim The Bear T-shirt, which is pretty cool,” said Ordaz.
Staff members will keep a log to verify participants’ workouts. The number of laps swam will have a lifeguard initial and all progress will be recorded. All participants will also be able to know their progress and be supervised at all times during the challenge.
Participants who successfully accomplish this impressive feat by March 9, will be entered into a raffle to win great prizes.
“There will be many great prizes for this event. Anyone who can swim the length of Big Bear Lake will have an opportunity to win some awesome prizes. We hold a raffle for all of the participants that complete our Swim The Bear to give participants even more motivation to succeed,” said Ordaz.
Participants can be found training now for Swim The Bear, filling the pool throughout the day as they improve their stamina and different strokes. The Swim The Bear event brings out determination, dedication, and hard work ethic from those who are ready to take on the challenge.
The Swim The Bear event benefits participants both mentally and physically. Between studying for tests and loads of homework, it helps students relieve stress and relax throughout the quarter.
“This is such a great event. Swim The Bear motivates all potential participants to swim and have a good time. It is a good challenge and gives students a great sense of accomplishment. To be able to say ‘I swam the length of Big Bear’ is so rewarding and is what this event is all about,” said Bryan.
Students can continue to sign up for the event and test their skills as they attempt to complete the swim. (how long will it be going on for?)