The 2014 European Swimming Championships is taking place in Berlin from 13 to 24 August. Next week the focus will be on diving and swimming in the pool, but this week is all about open water and synchronised swimming.

Synchronised swimming combines elements of dance, gymnastics and swimming. Competitors need to be graceful, strong and agile. They also need to be able to hold their breaths for a long time.

These photos, taken both above and below the surface of the water, show the grace, power and downright strangeness of the sport.