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Can The Cold Be Good For You?

Can The Cold Be Good For You?

Despite romantic ideas of long walks in the snow or being curled up by a roaring fire with a good book, being cold is rarely fun. It can be bad for you too, as statistics show that cold weather is 20 times more likely to kill you than hot weather[1]. It’s no wonder, then, that so many of us crave the summertime when the weather is warm and people seem instinctively happier. Nevertheless, there is a growing group of people who believe that, despite the dangers, braving the cold can actually be very good for you.

Do You Dare?

Dutch dare-devil Wim Hof is one of these people and is, in fact, the founder of a whole school of thought when it comes to the cold. Nicknamed ‘The Iceman’, it seems that Hof has always had an affinity to the cold weather. Even in his teenage years, he was running barefoot in the snow. Since then, he has broken no less than 21 world records in relation to the cold, including the record for the longest time spent immersed in an ice-bath, running a marathon above the Arctic Circle wearing only sandals and shorts, and unofficially, swimming under ice for a huge 120 meters having taken only one breath[2]. Rather impressive, undoubtedly, but Hof claims that through all his experiences, he has developed a technique that control his own autonomic nervous system – something that science has, up until recently, said simply cannot be done[3].