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GALLERY: 260 Swimmers Took Part in the 74th Alfred Nikodem Memorial Race

260 swimmers took part in the 74th Alfred Nikodem Memorial race of hardy people’s contests in the Vltava River on Saturday.

The water and air temperatures were 5.8 and 1.8 degrees Celsius.

Despite the ban on sports activities, the National Sports Agency supported the event and the Ministry of Health granted an exception for its organization. The memorial was held under strict anti-epidemic measures, all participants passed an antigen test.

As usual, there were three distances for the racers, with the longest measuring 750 meters and the other two 350 or 100 meters.

The memorial has been named after Alfred Nikodem (1864-1949), a Prague goldsmith who made winter swimming popular in Czechoslovakia.

430 swimmers launched themselves in the cold waters of Vltava river during the last edition. Swimmers came from the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Belgium, England, Russia, and Kazakhstan.

Winter swimming was first seen in Prague in 1923 when he and six other enthusiasts plunged into the freezing cold Vltava River watched by a crowd of stunned on-lookers.

Photo: Ondřej Deml: ČTK
Photo: Ondřej Deml: ČTK
Photo: Ondřej Deml: ČTK
Photo: Ondřej Deml: ČTK
Photo: Ondřej Deml: ČTK

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