Reminiscing about firsts for us, looking all the way back to 2017 when we competed in our first ocean swim.
Some of the women are concerned about growing Islamaphobia in Australian politics and overseas – but for them, the beach is a break.
The Burkini Babes group has been training for months, getting up early for weekly swims ahead of the south Maroubra competition.
“I don’t think I ever had in mind to enter an ocean swim,” Yusra Metwally, founder of the group, told SBS.
But after some regions in France banned the burkini last year, and amid a rise in anti-Islamic sentiment across the west, Ms Metwally was prompted to start the group.
“There’s a lot going on globally. There’s a lot going on politically, and I like to think that when we’re in the ocean we get to get away from that,” she said.
“We’re just a bunch of girls out for a swim; and the more people can see that the more people see diversity on our beaches, diversity in different activities that will hopefully change perceptions that we’re just like everyone else.”