Alice Dearing: Britain’s only black elite swimmer looking to challenge cultural myths


“I have heard myths such as black people can’t swim, our bones are too dense, we sink when we get into the water. It’s not meant for us….”

As Great Britain’s only black elite swimmer Alice Dearing is on a mission to promote inclusivity and diversity in a swimming world damaged by stereotypes.

While 95 percent of black adults in England do not swim and 80 percent of black children have never been swimming according to Swim England statistics, Birmingham-born Dearing is seen as an anomaly, learning to swim at the age of five.

“I’ve had black people tell me they can’t swim and I’m like ‘you can. I promise you’. You just need lessons – you just need to be taught,” Dearing exclusively told Sky Sports News.

“You might have had one bad experience with the water but it shouldn’t affect your whole relationship with swimming and relationship with water because it is such an important life skill.”

See Sky Sports

About Author

Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, spare-time swimming aficionado. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

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