Stay Cool Ice baths are gaining so much traction & exposure on social media platforms nowadays and makes a lot of people wonder - is it actually good for you? Is there a right way to do it? Should YOU do it? We’re going to sum this up as briefly & informatively as possible and hopefully by the end of this short read you’ll be knowledgeable enough to know the benefits of cold water therapy, where to start and hopefully give it a shot. Remember - this is a great way to take on a new challenge & spice up your recovery routine with some GOOD pain! In case you're new to the practice, cold water immersion is a sports therapy method that's become increasingly popular among professional and amateur athletes. While scientists continue to evaluate the perks of trying ice baths, there are a range of existing reasons for why you might want to consider taking the plunge yourself: 1. Reduced Muscle Soreness: There’s a couple of studies that point out that the cold is often used to reduce blood flow in the muscles to limit inflammation, swelling & damage to the muscle fibers. 2. Boosts Immunity: The Academy of Science found evidence that the nervous system and immune system can be voluntarily influenced through practicing various techniques with cold water therapy being one of them! 3. Relieve Stress: This stimulates the vagus nerve – your body's communication highway and part of the parasympathetic nervous system – which helps to slow the heart rate, relax the body, and activate metabolism. But it doesn’t just stop there. With all the recent attention on the ice baths, more & more benefits and other health reasons are coming out such as
Decreased systolic blood pressure
Decreased diastolic blood pressure
Lower cortisol levels
Lower heart rate
Reduced water weight
Now, if you’re convinced enough to give it a shot & put yourself to a test - here’s our top 3 tips for your first time alright: - You don’t need to ice yourself to death:Throwing in anywhere from 2-4 bags of Ice (once you fill the tub with cold water) should do the trick just fine! If you have a hard time handling the cold - we would still recommend starting with 2 Large bags of Ice - that way you start setting the bar for yourself right off the bet. - Breathing Before Everything:You’ll be tempted to get out and your breathing will be all over the place. It’s in your best interest to catch your breath & regain the calmness. Once you do that - you’ll find that cold & discomfort is much more bearable! -The 5 Minute Rule:Do your best & aim for at least 5 minutes. The first 2 minutes are going to be the worst - just prepare for that & get ready to fight yourself mentally through the first two minutes. After that - just focus on the breathing and get used to the feeling. It WILL be very, very rewarding!