Getting into the cold in nature—there is nothing like it. And taking an ice bath is an amazing way to show yourself what you are capable of. To befriend the cold at home or in the wild, follow these steps:
1 First, find someone to share this experience with you. Ice baths and cold plunges are safer and more fun with friends.
2 Prepare yourself by doing one or two rounds of the basic breathing exercise as you visualize the cold water. How will it make you feel? Imagine how you will enter the water, be it a bathtub or a lake, and how you will feel when you do it. Assume a can-do mindset.
3 Confidently enter the water while taking deep, calm breaths. Focus on your breath. Embrace the cold; let it take you to the depths of yourself. Do NOT perform the WHM basic breathing technique. Instead, do long, conscious, exhalations to bring your breath into a controlled, steady rhythm. Take deep breaths through the nose and try to relax. Try letting out a long “Hummmmm” on the exhale.
4 Keep your focus on your breath and your being as you exit the water. Warm up by doing the horse stance exercise while maintaining your inner attention.
The cold is our warm friend, our mirror, and our teacher. It can also be dangerous. When you extend exposure to the cold by going into an ice bath or open body of water, it is an intense experience. If you want to try an ice bath or a cold plunge, make sure you are being safe and smart about it.