Swimming the English Channel will be one of the hardest things you do, but nothing beats the feeling of finally reaching the shore in France after completing one of the world’s toughest open water swimming challenges.  In relay teams of six your job will be to train hard and fundraise, we’ll take care of everything else.

If you are interested in taking on a Relay Channel Swim in 2023 please email [email protected]

The Challenge

The Relay Channel Swim covers 22 miles between the UK and France. Completed in teams of six, each swimmer will take it in turn to swim the channel for an hour in rotation, until the team reaches France.  Our teams on average take around 14 hours. Timings and exact distances are estimated and are governed by the weather, tides and currents.

Watch one of our Relay Teams taking on the channel

What you can expect from us

We have been offering Relay Channel Swims since 2009 and have a strong relationship with the Channel Swimming & Piloting Federation (CS&PF). We take care of all the necessary administration, book and organise CS&PF boats, and arrange teams.


We will support you throughout your Channel Swim training and will provide you with a suggested training plan for the winter. We also organise three team training weekends in Dover, where you can prepare for your swimming challenge and have the opportunity to get to know the other Aspire swimmers. 

Relay channel swim training weekends

What we expect from you

  • Attend our Assessment Day in November where we select our swimmers, ensuring that everyone has a real chance of success.
  • Attend our three team training weekends in Dover (held in May, June and July).
  • Complete all CSPF paperwork promptly and obtain the mandatory medical by the required deadline.
  • Commit fully to training throughout the winter and in the lead up to your Channel Swim.
  • Be available to swim with your team when called.  You will have a given tide but if the conditions are not right this could be delayed.
  • Pledge to raise a minimum amount, ideally exceeding this initial target. Every £1 raised helps Aspire to provide practical help to people paralysed by Spinal Cord Injury.

Testimonials from previous Aspire relay channel swimmers

Supported by:

Man using Zen8 Indoor Swim Trainer

Other swimming events

How we help