This information is advisory only. Cold water immersion is a unique and invigorating experience but also a challenging one. Before you plunge right in, you’ll need to prepare your body, both mentally and physically.
We recommend taking short, cold showers to help get your body used to the shock of being immersed in cold water. It is not recommended that you ‘dive’ straight in with the cold temperature.
It is well reported that there are numerous health benefits of water therapy. A study conducted at the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine found that taking a cold shower (20oC) for 2 to 3 minutes preceded by a 5-minute cooling down period was sufficient enough to relieve some of the symptoms of depression (Shevchuk, 2008).
The cooling down period could mean getting in a slightly cooler shower than you are used to, and gradually decreasing the temperature over a 5-minute period until you reach 20oC.
You may find you need to do this for several weeks before using your Cold Pod for the first time to ensure you are mentally and physically ready. While you eagerly anticipate your Cold Pod's arrival, we recommend taking some cold showers to help acclimatise your body.
Breathing techniques can help your body prepare and cope with the temperature change it is exposed to, and breathing is also great for meditation.
Here is a simple technique you can use before you enter the Cold Pod. You can do this in a comfortable position in an area away from furniture or sharp objects:
When you enter the Cold Pod, you can use these breathing principles to help you adjust to the temperature and immerse yourself in the experience.
As a first-time Cold Podder, you shouldn’t just fill up the Pod with cold water and ice and jump in. Here are a few things we recommend you consider first:
Make sure you have a changing robe/towel handy for when you have finished your dip.
Start your cold water journey with warmer temperatures. It’s okay to just fill your Cold Pod with tap water for now without ice or other extra cold measures.
Cold water therapy is about achieving the correct balance between optimum temperature and duration.
A study published in 2016 found that a water temperature between 11 and 15oC and an immersion time of between 11 and 15 minutes was optimal (Machado et al. 2016).
Some experts suggest that you should start your Cold Pod journey at around 15oC, lowering the temperature and increasing the duration for each session. Over time, this will help your body acclimatise to the cold temperatures. You should only stay immersed for as long as it feels relatively comfortable, this is likely to increase the more you use the Cold Pod.
When you’re done, get out of the Cold Pod slowly and get into the horse stance. The horse stance is a common martial arts posture that’s also used during exercise. To get into the horse stance:
Combining the horse stance with the deep breathing exercises we described earlier this is a great way to naturally warm up after being immersed in the Cold Pod.
What is the right amount of time will differ from person to person and it depends on an individuals own levels of tolerance. We recommend you should listen to your own body and proceed with caution at least in the early stages.
You should ALWAYS consult your doctor before using the ice bath if you have ANY health issues.
The Cold Pod should not be used if you are:
Or if you have:
You should conduct your own health checks and research, including seeking medical advice if you are at all unsure whether you should engage in cold water therapy.
Please note we are not medically qualified, nor is any information contained on our website medical advice. So far as we are legally able to do so, we exclude liability from any harm that arises from the use of the Cold Pod.
Machado, A. F., Ferreira, P. H., Micheletti, J. K., de Almeida, A. C., Lemes, Í. R., Vanderlei, F. M., Netto Junior, J., & Pastre, C. M. (2016). Can Water Temperature and Immersion Time Influence the Effect of Cold Water Immersion on Muscle Soreness? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Sports medicine (Auckland, N.Z.), 46(4), 503–514. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-015-0431-7
Shevchuk N. A. (2008). Adapted cold shower as a potential treatment for depression. Medical hypotheses, 70(5), 995–1001. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mehy.2007.04.052