As it turned out, my fear of being a bum was stronger than my fight-or-flight fear, so I closed my eyes and focused on my breathing until I could somehow control it. I can’t say that I relaxed, but I no longer felt like I was dying. Well, he told me that if I make it to 90 seconds, then everything else will be smooth. And, despite the pain in my legs that I experienced, and the ridiculous tension that I kept in my shoulders, it was so.
To be honest, the biggest positive outcome for me was the feeling of accomplishment. It was not easy to stay under this water for five minutes, but I persevered and achieved my goal. I took pride in myself and a newfound sense of confidence that I could breathe through other stressful, uncomfortable situations. And, according to Tipton, I’m not alone in this feeling.
“One of the things that people report, and one of the reasons they benefit from exposure to cold, is that they feel like they’ve done the task,” he said. “They have the ability to control their breathing when they couldn’t before, and that sense of fulfillment and accomplishment makes them feel good.”
Tipton divided the other main benefits into three categories: feeling alert and alert (obvious, not requiring scientific evidence), boosting the immune system, and reducing inflammation. I would add that another thing I hear a lot about is improved mood and mental well-being.
When it comes to scientific evidence, most of the existing research is either too extensive or not properly designed to determine if there is a physical or mental benefit to cold immersion.
For example, in one case study published by Tipton and colleagues, a 24-year-old man with treatment-resistant depression was eventually able to stop his medication after a weekly cold water swim. However, it is unclear whether she felt better after bathing due to the cold or the exercise itself (which has been shown to help with depression).
One study mentioned by Tipton found that swimmers had fewer upper respiratory tract infections than non-swimmers, although this advantage was the same whether they swam in cold water or in warm pools.
Tipton said that, anecdotally at least, many people seem to actually experience benefits, such as one woman who found that cold water immersion helped her deal with severe migraines. While he believes the anecdotal evidence is credible, he wants to do more research to be able to back it up scientifically.
“We don’t have a lot of good research yet, but we do know what neurochemicals are released when you do a cold dive, and that’s increased endorphins, increased norepinephrine, increased dopamine, as some of the early studies have shown,” Justin Puder said. BuzzFeed News South Florida psychologist. “If you told me as a psychologist that you could do something that increases these neurochemicals, I would say it has a great chance of improving mental health.”
This chemical release suggests there may be a benefit, but again, we still don’t know for sure if there is or how long these benefits might last, according to Puder.
I admit that the challenge and satisfaction of it all made me want to come back for more. Since I don’t have constant access to a natural body of water or a personal bath, I may try to keep the water as cold as possible during the last 30 seconds of my daily shower.
While you can fill a tub with ice water and try cold water dips on your own at home, Tipton said it’s probably safer to try these methods in a more regulated environment.
Even if you do get better at some point, Tipton warned that more is better when it comes to dipping into the cold. When people think something is good for them, they tend to assume that doing it twice as much is even better, but overexposure to the cold can actually do more harm than good, he said.
I’m looking forward to more research that I’m sure will be published given how trendy cold water immersion has become in the wellness space. If I feel like I’m getting any health benefit, I may want to do it (safely) even more. Maybe someday I can have my own pistonbut until then, I’ll stick with short cold showers and occasional winter dips in the ocean.
you can buy piston from Cold Plunge for around $4,990.