WHEN IS THE BEST TIME FOR STARTING COLD WATER SWIMMING?
Among cold water swimmers and vikings from all over the Nordic countries in Scandinavia there is broad agreement that the cold season for winter swimmers runs from October to April, but here in Denmark we actually think that it starts as early as September, when the water temperature starts to drop day by day.
If you've always dreamed of trying cold water swimming - now is the time to get started. In this short article we have described how you get started and what to expect.
For most people, it is far easier to get into the water in September or October than in the middle of winter, as the water still feels fairly "warm" and does not yet give the body a cold shock.
If this is the winter you have decided to start as cold water swimmer, we definitely recommend that you get in the cold water a few times a week - or maybe every day, if possible. As soon as you have a good routine, it's just a matter of "sticking with it" as the water gets colder and colder week by week. This will be much easier than starting later in November or December.
At first the water will feel very cold - even now - and you may not want to continue, but you have to keep going for a few weeks. And try to get in the cold water 6-8 times, before you decide if it is something for you or not. It takes time for your body to adjust and you cannot decide it based on only one or two swims.
As the water gets colder and colder, your body will get used to the cooler temperatures - day by day - and week by week. The trick is that your body should still be able to "remember" the last trip in the cold water as it will be less shocked the next time you jump in. It's easier to stick with winter bathing when your body doesn't have to get used to temperatures below 5 degrees to start with, as it often is in December and January.
One of the most important pieces of advice we would like to share with you is to go swimming with a good friend or family member who is already a cold water swimmer. That way, you will definitely get a lot of support and good advice when you jump into the cold - the very first times.
It may seem extreme to expose the body to an immediately "unpleasant" experience, but try to hold on, breathe and only decide after a few weeks whether it is you or not. Your body will definitely beg for more once you get started, as a lot of healthy processes set in motion in your body.
Read about these health benefits - maybe they are exactly these final arguments you will need to convince you to get started :)
GREAT HEALTH BENEFITS FOR YOUR BODY AND MIND
It is no secret that cold exposure for your body is very healthy. More and more scientist and researchers around the world have set an eye on this health tip. In Scandinavia it is a generations long tradition - that we cherish every day.
When you emerge into the cold water your body gets a big and healthy shock which starts a number of important and healthy processes in your body.
The body goes into a healthy state of alert, believing that there is "danger" on the way. In a safe, warm and secure world, it is healthy for us to introduce more adversity and "stress on the body" into our lives.
Our ancestors were built to withstand adversity in order to survive. Today, our society is built around comfort, so we don't use energy to live anymore. But exposing ourselves for a cold shock is a miracle cure that you can choose to start right now today.
The cold water exposes the body to short-term and quite severe stress, which sends defensive substances into the brain and body such as our main happiness hormone endorphine, also adrenaline and adrenal cortex hormones are pushed into our blood stream, mood substances such as serotonin, as well as beta-endorphins, which reduce pain and stress. All this - as a giant vitamine and energy booster is immediately pushed into every small cell of the body and instantly improves your mood and feeling in your body.
In other words; Cold water swimming can make you happier and gives you more well-being - for free :) as well as strengthen your health, as your body begins to initiate the important processes that our ancestors actually survived on.
In the instant you get out of the water, you feel a boost of energy, as the blood quickly pumps out into your skin cells, as well as out into your muscles and very importantly into your brain. It creates a nice feeling of warmth in the whole body that lasts for several hours, so you feel nice and well-being after your cold dip. But rest assured - you are not just feeling healthier - you have done something that also makes you healthier.
In order to keep up your heat production, which is kick-started in the body, you just have to remember to dress in something warm and windproof, so that the heat your body automatically produces plenty of - stays in the body - and does not escape into the air around you.
Our collection is designed by us:
For winter swimmers, by winter swimmers.
We hope you like it: NORDBAEK COLLECTION
Swim & smile,
Ida & Barbara
Founders of NORDBAEK, Denmark