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Charley Webb wows in plunging black swimsuit for family day out

The Emmerdale star's fans were in disbelief over her bravery

Charley Webb at the British Soap Awards in 2014
Melanie Macleod
Melanie MacleodWellness Editor
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Former Emmerdale actress Charley Webb impressed her fans over the weekend, sharing that she'd embraced the wellness trend for cold water swimming.

The 35-year-old donned a plunging black swimsuit for the occasion, with photos from the day showing her sunbathing by the water, as well as gingerly stepping into the cold lake, with the cold leaving her breathing deeply.

Charley's friends and followers were wowed by her bravery, with her Emmerdale co-star Kelvin Fletcher commenting: "Never. In. A. Million. Years. Who's this?" with Charley jokily replying: "Who even am I?" Watch Charley's swimming video - and see her lovely black swimsuit - on Instagram below...

Fans simply expressed admiration, commenting: "Wow looks amazing! Love that you went in!" and: "Charley you're a brave woman in my eyes doing this."

Charley is the latest in a long line of celebrities to embrace cold water swimming, including Amanda Holden, Joe Wicks and Lorraine Kelly – even the Princess of Wales has expressed a fondness for the chilly pursuit.

Charley Webb swimming in a lake© Instagram
Charley Webb was brave enough to swim in cold water

Not for the faint-hearted, cold water swimming is as chilly as it sounds, involving swimming in cold bodies of water – but the benefits are more than worth it.

Independent medical nutritionist Dr. Sarah Brewer explains: "Cold water immersion stimulates endorphins to improve mood to help combat stress, anxiety and depression."

READ: Cold water therapy: What are the physical and mental health benefits? 

Sharing how the hobby helps keep stress at bay, Dr. Sarah said: "Cold water keeps you in the moment, so it's the ultimate form of mindfulness. It helps to achieve calm meditation as you focus on your breathing."

Studies support the mental health benefits of cold water therapy too. Research by Swim England for World Mental Health Day found that of those who partake in cold water swimming regularly, 43 per cent said it made them feel happier, 26 per cent felt more motivated to complete daily tasks and 15 per cent said life felt more manageable after cold water therapy.

Charley Webb basking the the sun following her outdoor swim© Instagram
Charley Webb basking IN the sun following her outdoor swim

Ali Phillips, who instructs wild swimming sessions at the Lake District spa Armathwaite Hall explains that cold water therapy gives us a chance to switch off.

RELATED: How cold water swimming eased my anxiety and isolation

"Once you're immersed in the cold water you are fully in that experience and forget about everything else," she says.

We're seriously impressed by Charley taking to the cold water – and we can't wait to see her next swimming adventures, fingers crossed she documents them on social media too.

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