Swimmers soak up the sunshine in Jesus Green LidoBethan Moss with permission for Varsity


As things start to heat up both academically and meteorologically, the first place you should look for relaxation is a body of freezing cold water. Cambridge has a selection of outdoor swimming pools from Christ’s and Emma’s offerings of 15m or so of faintly green water surrounded by grass, to the all-conquering Jesus Green Lido, where – for the small fee of £3.50 – you get a changing room and a lifeguard. Another place to swim is the river. Predominantly done out in Grantchester, but with places to swim around the city, the river is your best chance for an outdoor swim if you are: (a) tight, or (b) not fortunate enough to know anyone who lives in the really central colleges. You will get diarrhoea, but that is infinitely preferable to having an anxiety attack in an exam.


Are you a pent up ball of anxiety and repressed stress? Play squash. Believe me, there aren’t many things which are more satisfying than smacking a little ball very hard at a wall and then galloping after it. Can’t sleep because you’re worried about that pesky Politics paper, or horrendously hard History exam? Play squash for an hour or so and you’ll be out like a light as soon as your head hits the pillow. Plus, all squash courts are indoors, so you won’t have to douse your pale little body in Factor 50 or face the wrath of mosquitos.


I know it’s the worst form of exercise in the world. I know to run for fun is to admit to a masochist streak which is remarkable even in this godforsaken place. I know it’s too hot to be comfortable. You must do it still. Why? Because you’ll feel proud of yourself, that’s why. Runner’s high is real, and if you’re in that stage of exam-/Cambridge-induced despair where you feel unutterably shit about yourself all the time, completing a run will make you feel better. It’s a scientific fact that putting on your trainers and going for a jog or a sprint will help your mental health. Don’t put off that jog until tomorrow, when your exams are a day closer and its easier to convince yourself you have to spend every minute of the day in the library. Do it now, while the sun’s still shining.


Mountain View

Summer Sports return to Cambridge


Struggling to maintain a social life in exams? Not getting your exercise in either? Play tennis. A good workout, which will also allow you to both see and joke with your friends, tennis is the solution to any feelings of solitary confinement which may have been building up as you sit in the library for days on end. Particularly good for our hard-working STEM students, tennis allows you to feel social without actually having to engage in a proper conversation, which, if you’ve decided to temporarily/permanently switch that part of your brain off, is undoubtedly a good thing.


Another great idea for our friends in STEM. Sex releases endorphins in a similar way to running, and will release at least some of that tension that’s been building up all day in the library. This is also the perfect time of year to have a fling. Messed around in Michaelmas, led on in Lent or heartbroken in the holidays? Get a sneaky link for exam season and start your hot girl summer early. Just make sure it doesn’t interrupt your sleep schedule too much; you might miss your 9am exams.