Maximise Wellness with Ice Baths: Your Guide to Cold Water Therapy at Home

Temps de lecture : 7 minutes environ

If you’ve been hearing all about ice bath benefits, why not give them a try in 2024?

It’s actually surprisingly easy to set up cold water therapy at home and it’s certainly worth the hype. 

Our team of wellness experts gave us the inside scoop on ice bath benefits, and here’s what you need to know!

Man taking cold plunge

What is Cold Water Therapy and How Does it Work?

Cold water therapy uses an ice bath or ice tub to expose your body to icy temperatures. It may sound uncomfortable, but there are a tonne of health benefits you stand to gain.


The Science Behind Cold Water Immersion

When you take a cold water dip, the blood vessels close to your skin contract in a process known as vasoconstriction. 

This causes your body to redirect all your blood to your vital organs, which means they get a big hit of warm, oxygenated, nutrient-laden blood.


Contrast Water Therapy: Alternating Hot and Cold

Some people also like to alternate between ice-cold baths and scorching saunas, for an added health boost. 

Switching between the two causes vasoconstriction in the cold, as blood vessels contract, then vasodilation in the heat, as blood vessels expand again.

It helps keep your circulation going and results in a pump-like action of blood and nutrients being spread throughout the body.


The Wim Hof Method: A Unique Approach

Many people know of cold water dips through a man called Wim Hof, who is known for combining breathwork with ice baths.

By using special breathing techniques, Wim Hof has managed to control his body’s response to the cold and “breathe through it.” As a result, he can stay in the ice baths longer with minimal discomfort – even through the freezing temperature!


outdoor ice bath

What are the Ice Bath Benefits?

So, what exactly are the ice bath benefits? Let’s take a closer look.


Muscle Recovery and Pain Relief

Many athletes use ice baths and cold therapy to assist in muscle recovery. When you think about it, it’s just like a giant, full-body ice bath!

The vasoconstriction that occurs can reduce inflammation, and reduce the breakdown of muscle tissue whilst also soothing aches and pains.


Improved Circulation and Immune Response

One of the biggest ice bath benefits is the boost in circulation you get. Vasoconstriction redirects all the blood to your vital organs like your brain, heart, and intestines.

This means that your body is hit with a boost of oxygen, nutrients, and nice warm blood to carry out important functions like immune response, metabolism, and healing.


Mental Health and Mood Enhancement

Many people also notice that a cold bath is accompanied by a rush of euphoria, as the body releases tonnes of endorphins. This therapeutic self-care is also a massive self-esteem boost, knowing that you’ve accomplished something very difficult that requires a lot of willpower.


Ice bath plunge benefits

How to Set Up Cold Water Therapy at Home?

If you want to try cold water therapy at home, the good news is that you have a tonne of options!


Preparing for Your First Cold Plunge

When you’re getting ready for a cold plunge, it’s important to take it easy. Start with a cold-but-not-freezing temperature, and keep it short to start off with.

Don’t worry – you’ll build up endurance over time and be able to weather much colder temps for much, much longer!

You can wear your bathing suit for your cold plunge, and keep a nice warm towel on standby for when you’re done.


Essential Safety Tips for Ice Baths

Some medical conditions don’t play well with ice baths, so it’s important to get the green light from a doctor if you have any health issues such as high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease.

You should also use a thermometer to monitor the temperature of the water so you can ensure it doesn’t get dangerously cold.

Oh – and don’t forget to take your jewellery off! Your fingers will swell in the cold, and you don’t want your rings to get stuck.

Choosing the Right Ice Tub for Home Use

If you want to make a low-maintenance ice bath at home, all you really need to do is fill your bathtub with ice and cold water. You could also use a big tub or bucket, or even a little blow-up pool!

There are also several commercial home ice baths at every price point and in numerous different sizes. If you’re looking to make ice baths a part of your wellness regimen, it’s worth investing in the proper equipment for best results.


cold exposure therapy illustration

What are the Best Practices for Cold Water Immersion?

Want to get maximum ice bath benefits? Here’s how to make the most of your cold plunges.

Optimising Ice Bath Temperature and Duration

You want to keep your ice bath between 10-15°C (50-59°F) for best results – this is the sweet spot where you get all the health benefits without any adverse effects from the cold.

It’s also important to start with shorter durations and build-up, but your maximum shouldn’t be more than about 10 minutes to avoid negative consequences.


Gradually Building Cold Tolerance

Not many people can last long in an ice bath for the first time, so don’t worry! Start small, even if it’s just a few seconds at first. 

First, focus on getting your whole body (except for your face, obviously!) submerged. Once you can get your whole body in, then it’s time to stay a little longer and longer each time.

Build up to one minute, then two, then all the way up to 10 if you can!


Combining Cold Therapy with Other Recovery Methods

Cold therapy is great to combine with other health and wellness protocols.

Try combining cold therapy with:


If you’re looking into cold water therapy as part of your wellness routine, then Wecasa can help you out!

Wecasa helps you find local professionals like massage therapists and facial experts who can turn your home into a spa.




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