The practice of immersing oneself in icy water might sound challenging, or seem like an activity that is reserved for only the most daring individuals. However, ice tubs are becoming really popular not just among top athletes but among wellness enthusiasts as well.
Why, you ask?
This is because of the numerous benefits that this chilly and daring endeavor offers.
From getting a full muscle recovery to mood enhancement, ice tubs have become a transformative experience when done correctly.
Why Take an Ice Tub?
Taking the plunge into icy waters can come with scientifically linked multiple health benefits.
Some of these benefits are:
- Enhanced Workout Recovery: When you take an ice tub, the cold temperature will significantly reduce muscle inflammation and soreness after an intense workout session.
- Mood Enhancement: The surge of adrenaline and endorphins from an ice tubwill naturally leave you feeling more sharp and alert, and even boost your mood.
- Pain Relief: One effective way to ease chronic pain symptoms is by undergoing a cold water therapy.
Mentally Bracing for the Chill
Before you decide to do an ice tub, it is important that you prepare your mind for it, so you don’t have a horrible experience. Here are some essential tips to mentally prepare yourself for an ice tub:
- Educate Yourself: You need to familiarize yourself with the benefits and have a deep understanding of how an ice tub can positively impact your wellbeing and be a source of motivation.
- Stay Calm: Once you plunge in, the initial shock can be intense. However, you should concentrate on your breathing and try to remain composed to help your body quickly adapt.
Physical Prep: Step-by-Step
After mentally preparing yourself, you also need to be physically prepared because it goes beyond just filling a tub with ice and jumping in. Proper preparation will ensure you are safe and the experience is worth it.
- Start Small: Before you jump in, you should begin with a 2-3 minutes cold shower to see how your body reacts to the temperature change.
- Safety First: Consult a doctor, especially in a situation where you have underlying health conditions.
- Know the Limits: It is good to be determined, but once you feel extreme numbness or you’re having difficulty breathing, that’s an indication to get out. Always pay attention to the signals your body is communicating.
The Icy Plunge: Procedure and Tips
Once you’re certain that you’re mentally and physically ready to have an ice tub, you should consider the following:
- Temperature and Duration: If you are a beginner, you should aim for a water temperature of 50-59°F (10-15°C) and limit the immersion to 10-15 minutes.
- Tools: Use a thermometer to do an accurate measurement of the water.
- Breathing: Relax and take deep, controlled breaths to remain calm. This significantly helps in regulating your body temperature.
- Post-Bath Care: Once you’re done ice bathing, dry off and gradually warm up. You should consider putting on warm clothing and drinking a hot beverage.
When Should You Take an Ice Tub?
Choosing the right time to take an ice tub can have significant impact on your experience.
- During your Daily Routine: Some people prefer taking an ice tub in the morning to start off their day, while others prefer evenings to unwind. Consider how it fits into your daily schedule and how it influences your mental health.
- After a workout session: If you’re an athlete or you do regular exercise, post-workout is a great time to take an ice tub because it will help reduce inflammation and muscle recovery.
While ice tubs may seem challenging, being knowledgeable and effectively preparing for it, can make the experience memorable.
If you’re an athlete or you just want to tick off ice tub off your bucket list, it has great physical and mental benefits.