Rowing can be an extreme physical burden, especially for a task as monumental as rowing across the Atlantic. For a British team of female rowers undertaking the task, they opted to express themselves while making the journey easier. They decided to spend some time rowing naked.
As reported by CNN, an all-female British team of five rowers has broken the record for crossing the Atlantic Ocean. The five women, the Row for Freedom team, completed the extraordinary feat of endurance and strength in just 45 days.
Row for Freedom Skipper Debbie Beadle said,” If you row naked it means you don’t rub as much and you get dry much quicker instead of constantly having wet clothes.” The unconventional tactic seems to have worked. In addition to completing the voyage in a record amount of days, the Row for Freedom team is the first to make the voyage between the Canary Islands and Barbados. The complete distance of the journey is about 2,600 miles.
The British team of rowers consists of Beadle, Julia Immonen, Katie Pattison-Clark, Helen Lee and Kate Richardson. The team was raising money for two UK based anti-human trafficking charities. The route that the team took was a route previously used to transport slaves between the Americas and Europe. Beadle said, “Getting the record was amazing. It was something we worked hard for and were really determined to achieve when we set out.”
The crew faced several problems during the 3 month journey. The nude travel was meant to counter boils and sores from salt water but there were other problems lurking. Food was lost when it became flooded with seawater due to broken hatches. The water maker on the boat, which provided most of the clean drinking water, broke. In addition, the steering also malfunctioned during the journey.
These may seem like enough problems to make anyone quit and call in a rescue unit. However, through night and day the five team members persevered. “We got to know each other very well,” said Beadle.
The motivation to complete the trip for the women was the noble cause. All of the women have day jobs and Beadle is a youth worker at ECPAT UK. She notes the feedback she has received from young people when she returned is inspiring her and the team to pan another mission. Beadle says, “Because our focus on human trafficking we are considering traveling across some of the deserts in North Africa which are major trafficking routes.”