This month, we continue our 9-part series on the benefits of cold plunging and explore how cold water immersion can improve your circulation. At RENU Therapy, we get excited when our clients experience results and improvements in their mental and physical well-being. Improved circulation is one physical benefit of cold water therapy that many extreme athletes and cold exposure enthusiasts have experienced. But how exactly does cold water immersion help with circulation and soon can you start to see results? Read on to learn more!
#2 Improves Your Circulation
Who knew that immersing your body in an ice bath for a few minutes a day could improve your body's circulation? Spending a few minutes in a cold plunge pool has numerous benefits for your mind and your body. Increased circulation is one of the positive effects that you may begin to experience after regularly plunging your whole body into a cold pool.
What is Circulation?
The flow of blood through your entire body is known as circulation. Healthy circulation is important for your overall health and well-being, and supports your heart health and immune system. When you have healthy circulation, your blood is able to efficiently carry nutrients, oxygen, and immune cells to your organs and tissues. In addition, it is also able to remove waste products and carbon dioxide.
Poor circulation in your body can be caused by many factors including disease, a heart condition, obesity, or blood clots. If you are experiencing poor circulation, you may have symptoms that include:
- Sore muscles
- Tingling or numbness
- Pale or blue-ish skin
- Cold extremities
- Bulging veins
- Chest pain
Weight loss, a healthy lifestyle, and treating any underlying diseases or health issues may improve your body's circulation. In addition, there are other practices such as cold therapy, that you can explore in order to boost the circulation in your body and alleviate certain symptoms that you may feel.
How Does Cold Plunging Affect Circulation?
When you spend a few minutes in cold temperatures fully immersed in ice-cold water, your blood vessels begin to constrict. This reduces blood flow to your fingers and your toes. When you emerge from the frigid water, your blood vessels begin to dilate which causes blood to rush back to your limbs. This rush of blood can help to improve the overall circulation in your body.
If you are not new to cold plunge tubs, you know that the initial shock of immersing yourself in water with freezing temperatures can feel intense, and even bring about a stress response in your mind or body. Cold immersion triggers the release of hormones such as adrenaline and noradrenaline, and these hormones can increase heart rate and blood flow in your body. If you have poor circulation and tend to feel cold in your hands and feet, you may start to notice increased blood flow to your legs and improved circulation after a regular routine of cold-water immersion.
Cold Baths to Improve Your Circulation
As we are uncovering in this 9-part series, cold plunging holds many benefits if practiced regularly and routinely. While you may start to feel the benefits early on, committing to a long-term routine can allow you to reap long-term benefits. If you suffer from poor circulation and commit to a daily cold plunge practice, you may not only improve your circulation, but also decrease your blood pressure, reduce inflammation, boost your endorphins, and relieve muscle soreness.
If you are new to ice baths and cold tubs, you might be nervous to try them out. Know that it is completely normal to feel uncomfortable or even have a fight or flight response when you feel that cold shock of frigid water for the first time! Make sure to listen to your body and start slow in your practice. It's a good idea to start with 1-2 minutes inside your cold tub and slowly build up from there. Be aware of your breathing before, during, and after your cold plunge, and slowly work your way up to a daily practice.
Our Founder’s Thoughts on Cold Plunging and Improving Your Circulation
RENU Therapy's founder, Bill Bachand, remembers one of his first customers from Arizona who experienced improved circulation as a result of regular cold plunging. The older man suffered from poor circulation and when he first started cold plunging, would experience intense pins and needles in his feet while submerged. However, after 6 weeks of a consistent cold plunge practice, he was able to stay for 2-4 minutes in the cold tub without experiencing any discomfort in his feet!
In his own experience, Bill shares that his hands are his weak spot when it comes to plunging and where he feels the most discomfort. He tends to keep them submerged for the first 15-30 seconds, take them out of the water for the middle part of his practice, and then puts them back in the cold water for the last 15-30 seconds. Again, with consistent practice, he has noticed that the process is less brutal and finds his circulation has slowly improved in his hands.
Lastly, Bill recommends that cold plunging enthusiasts pair cold plunging with a sauna to see improvement in circulation. Cold water constricts while heat expands, so contrast therapy of cold-water exposure and then a sauna session right after would be ideal.
RENU Therapy Cold Tanks to Improve Your Circulation
If you experience poor circulation due to a health issue, or would simply like to improve your body's circulation and keep your immune system and heart healthy, cold plunging may be for you! While the frigid water temperature may seem daunting, with time and consistent practice, you will begin to see the cold plunge benefits mentally and physically.
Not sure where to start? Looking for the best cold plunge tank? RENU Therapy has the most modern and elegant cold plunge tanks in the industry. Our cold plunge tanks are designed to fit inside your home or backyard so that you have access to your cold tub at any time of the day! If you are interested to learn more about how a RENU Therapy tank can improve your circulation and health, contact RENU Therapy today to learn more!
Next Month’s Cold Plunging Benefit
Does a regular night for you consist of insomnia tossing and turning in bed? Have you tried everything to improve your quality of sleep without any relief? Cold plunging may be the answer! Next month, we will explore how cold water immersion therapy can help you hit the hay earlier and have a restful night's sleep.