A guest post from Seabirds who stock NukuNuku Haramaki in their Wild Swim Shop:
Who are the Seabirds? We are two sea swimmers heading into our 3rd winter of cold water swimming. We loved the positive impact on our mental and physical health, the sense of community and the ‘play’ of cold water dipping. We wanted to spread the swim love but we didn’t want to be a charity reliant on the vagaries of grants and funding. So we formed Seabirds Ltd and we opened our online Wild Swim Shop. The aim being that we sell high quality swim stuff and profits fund our ‘Wellbeing and Water” courses. Our swim group – Salty Seabirds‘ is currently at over a 1000 members (thankfully they do not all turn up for a swim at once!)
Of course it can really bloody cold in the sea and on the beach as we get changed. The haramaki – or core-warmer as we call it to keep it simple with those new to the idea – as proved invaluable post swim. Mostly (but not exclusively) women, the Salty Seabirds’ fingers tend towards the totally numb in the depths of winter. This is not time for bras. Pulling on a core-warmer is much easier and more effective at warming us up. We can use it to hide our boobs when getting changed on the beach (should we feel the need – most don’t care!)
All profits from Seabirds’ Wild Swim Shop go towards more courses supporting people to get into the sea for their mental wellbeing. When you buy from us you are helping people who need the solace of the sea find it! As we come up to Christmas please think of shopping from social enterprises such as ours so your gift gives twice. Check out our ‘Gifts for Swimmers‘ section for all your swimmy friends and Share the Swim Love 🙂
Cath and Kath Seabird xxx
Core-Warmer reviews from Seabirds’ Website:
I swear by these in the winter – makes a huge difference. Really helps you warm up quicker after a swim. I wear mine ALL THE TIME 🙂 (Elaine, Cumbria)
A small thing that makes a big difference. An essential peice of kit to help you warm up quickly after swim. Lovely quality and a good price. (Samantha, Brighton)
I was sceptical at first but now I swear by these. They can make all the difference when warming up after getting out of the water. Great for period pain too! Shove a mini hot water bottle in there…fantastic. (Sarah)
Sceptical and think you don’t need one? You may be if you haven’t yet tried them (but you will be hooked when you do!) You can test it out by tying a scarf round your waist to try the effect. Soon you will see that having the core of your body insulated raises your body temperature all over. This is because the inner organs are warm, increasing your circulation, which spreads heat all over your body, even to the toes and fingers:
Vascular surgeon Eddie Chaloner (in the Daily Mail).’When the limbs are exposed to colder temperatures than the torso, blood vessels in the arms and legs constrict. Blood then bypasses the limbs and floods to the torso. Being wrapped around the stomach will help the body to maintain its core temperature so that it doesn’t lose heat.’
So basically, warm your core to warm you all over. You can wear them over or under your clothes and you need a snug fit.
Our Haramaki will help you maintain an overall warmer body temperature and so suit anyone who needs extra warmth – those who work or play outdoors in all seasons from gardeners to sea swimmers, those who need to keep warm and stretchy such as pole dancers, aerial athletes, yoga practitioners etc. They are great for health problems such as period pain, back ache, chronic fatigue, Raynauds etc etc.
PS. Two recent comments on one of our Facebook Ads suggest that a vest would have exactly the same effect (thanks ladies!). Are they are better than a vest? Yes! Here is why – because they don’t show through your clothes (unless you want them to), they don’t ride up like vests can, they extend down to cover more of you where you want it and you don’t feel like you are wearing too many layers. And key point (especially for those of us women in the merry perimenopause) is that you take them off easily when you get too hat and without stripping right down! Vests are great, haramaki are even better 🙂
I have been updating my Etsy Shop – including a name change : Japanese Genius. This is so that we can sell a variety of Japanese items and Japanese inspired delights. The main website will stick to the Haramaki Back-Warmers in addition to our new thermal range of Angora socks, underwear, wrist and knee warmers etc. Japanese Genius on Etsy will continue to expand and explore wonderful Japanese products such as our Ninja Geisha and our Daruma Screenprint range – do follow our progress!
“Discovering haramaki has made my days at the markets so much nicer! My back and bum where I feel the cold the most after the first couple of hours outside are covered by the haramaki which makes a massive difference. I am looking at the wrist warmers next….”
Our haramaki and other ‘bits warmers’ are great for those on market stalls. They tend to be outside and standing around quite still – definitely going to be feeling the cold. We have a few customers who report how useful our haramaki are for keeping them warm when working outside – today we feature one of those, Etsy Seller extraordinaire, Katja of InkyKat Studios….
Despite loving printmaking Kat only discovered screen printing a few years ago when her mum bought her a three day course in screen printing for her birthday. “I just loved how, by using paper cut templates, you can create these clean crisp images. Printing on fabric allows me to add another dimension to my work by utilising some of the gorgeous prints I come across.”. Kat does commissions which make fantastic presents. Many people get their pets, or kids done as beautiful gifts.
Kat sells her beautiful hand cut screen-prints on Etsy and at various craft markets at the weekends throughout the year. She is currently developing a clothing range hand printed with her designs onto organic cotton t-shirts, bags and sweatshirts.
Many of the markets Kat sells at are outside or poorly heated and the traders can get really cold however many layers they put on or hot tea they pour into themselves. Now they have the answer! Warmth from the core with a haramaki 🙂
This all helps with NukuNuku‘s mission, keeping the nation warm, one core at a time…..
At NukuNuku we are very happy to know that our Haramakis support people who work and play outside as they allow you to stay outside longer by keeping them warmer for longer.
A great example is the growing wild swimming community. Seabirds Ltd sell NukuNuku Haramakis and their sea swimming community benefits from having discovered our core-warmers for warming up post-sea swim. Here is a post from one of the Seabirds explaining why she loves Sea Swimming and how to start it up:
Sea swimming has become part of my regular routine now. It gives me equilibrium. It never fails to shift a black mood. I am outside in all weathers, enjoying life and feeling alive. Swimming with the Salty Seabirds has brought fun and laughter into my life on a daily basis. Having FUN and JOY as a routine part of my daily life is SO MUCH BETTER THAN BEFORE. This has made me realise how previously days/weeks/months could go by before where life was mainly job and duty, no scheduled FUN, much less laughter and playfulness. I have re-discovered my inner child doing handstands in the cold water and found my tribe having a laugh about forgetting my pants again with other Salties drinking tea on the beach. This is why we started Seabirds Ltd and then the Salty Seabirds. To share the swim love and enlarge the group of like minded folk who relish dicking about in the sea in all weathers! We all deserve fun and laughter and to play – it is the antidote to many, many things I have found.
So if you want to start, how does the Salty Seabird Swim Community work? Firstly it is SELF SERVICE so if you need a swim set up every Wednesday at 3pm for example – you can set one up. Our current regular swims are: Mondays 10:45, Fridays 13:30 and Saturday 9:45 (all Hove Lawns/Dolphin 5) were all set up to fit with our work/life routines. Regular swims are in the events section on the facebook page. So are event swims like the monthly full moon swims.
So there are the regular swims, and then the daily random/spontaneous swims posted in the group. This of course takes a bit more Facebook hovering. Anyone can post and if it is posted in the group any member is welcome and can turn up. Unless stated otherwise (ie the rare ‘who will come around the West Pier with me type invitations’) dipping and messing about, head out breaststroke or head down crawl swimming round the buoys all welcome. I for one am a parallel breaststroker and happy with that. You don’t need to be a confident or ‘strong’ swimmer to stay in the shallows and swim parallel to the shore. No wetsuit or wetsuit on. Whatever suits you best. No judgement, all welcome. The experienced Salties are all very friendly and kind, you will be welcomed and glad you came along.