Although the thought of a cold shower might send shivers down your spine there are so many benefits you can gain from braving the cold. And we think now is the perfect time to try as the days just keep getting hotter!
So, what are the benefits:
1. A cold shower might help your mental health
According to a study conducted by the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, taking short two or three minute cold showers can be a helpful relief for symptoms of depression. This is because the exposure to the cold starts up the sympathetic nervous system and this sends electrical impulses from your nerve endings to the brain due to the density of cold receptors in the skin.
2. Pain relief
A cold shower is a great way to relieve pain as the cold can have an anesthetic-like effect on your body. The cold constricts your blood vessels which reduces swelling and slows down the pain signals going to your brain.
3. Helps to improve circulation
Having a cold shower can feel uncomfortable but invigorating. If you take cold showers regularly it can help to make your circulatory system more efficient. This happens because your body is having to work a little bit harder to maintain its core temperature.
4. Make you feel more alert
This one may not be surprising but the cold temperature can come as a shock to your body. This is because the cold water sends your nervous system into the “fight or flight” response which will make you feel more focused and alert.
5. A cold shower can potentially help your heart health
Taking a cold shower causes the body’s blood vessels to constrict which means the blood rushes around to the organs to stay warm which promotes blood flow. And with improved circulation, it can help to promote cardiovascular health (aka your heart stays happy and healthy).
6. Can help improve your complexion
Coldwater is great for skin as it makes our pores shrink which can help to improve our overall appearance of your skin. And as the cold reduces inflammation it can help keep spots away.
7. Cold showers help you recover from a workout more quickly
You may have thought those athletes taking ice baths looked crazy but there is a science to prove cold water helps reduce inflammation. This happens as the cold stimulates your blood vessels which causes them to narrow and your body directs the blood to where it is needed most; your vital organs. As your blood is forced to return to your heart it can help to pump blood to your lungs which creates oxygenated blood that can be pumped around your body meaning you are getting fresh nutrients to the right areas. This helps to speed up recovery and reduces your aches and pains. By adding cold showers to your routine you can help take your PT sessions to the next level and get major benefits!
Are you keen to give it a go now? Great!
But remember your body may not be used to the shock of cold water so it is a good idea to slowly build yourself up. Maybe start by doing a quick 30-second blast of cold water at the end of your shower. You need to give your body time to adjust and get over the mental challenge of showering in cold water. Just make sure to listen to your body and do what feels good for you and remember that cold showers aren’t for everyone. If you are worried it is best to speak to a medical professional before you try the cold!