I have said several times before that VR helps to alleviate fears – well how about guided instruction from the Swedish swim team?

Energy company E.ON, the Swedish Swimming Federation and M&C Saatchi Stockholm have launched a VR-initiative to encourage reticent children into water. The campaign, The Power of Swimming, is aimed at young non-swimmers who need a little encouragement to take the plunge.

By using virtual reality, the children are introduced to three members of the Swedish swim team, who guide them into a swimming pool, helping them to overcome their fears by swimming virtually. Later, the children meet the same swimmers in a real swimming pool, where they are encouraged into the water and begin to learn to swim in real life. The overall aim of the initiative is to inspire young people to start swimming and raise confidence in the water this summer.

The children’s response to the water has been completely changed by the VR experience. They say things like, “I was in the water in a second,” “I think that’s what I want to do when I grow up,” and “It feels good to be under water now.”

Martin Cedergren, Executive Creative Director and Partner, M&C Saatchi Stockholm, said: “At times in your career you are extra proud of a campaign. This is one of those moments. We really hope this initiative will positively change children’s swimming experiences and encourage them to feel confident enough to get in the water.”

Gotta say, this is a project I would love to ‘dive’ into at some point.

Tom Ffiske