Monday, March 22, 2021

"Wim Hof’s technique of using physical discomfort—like ice baths—to improve mind and body is gaining popularity as it seeks scientific acceptance."

The Wall Street Journal reports.

In 2013, researchers at Radboud University Medical Center in the Netherlands found that 12 people trained by Mr. Hof and then injected with E. coli had milder flulike symptoms than an untrained control group. In 2019, tests indicated a significant decrease in inflammation in 13 people suffering spinal arthritis over eight weeks of training in breathing, meditation and cold exposure....

Mr. Hof’s career was born out of tragedy. He was in the Pyrenees working as a mountain guide when his wife died by suicide in 1995. “That’s the way it actually began—the real trial of my life,” he says. “We were left behind with broken hearts, four kids and no money.”

Swimming in icy cold water had for years been a pastime. Now, he found it stopped the rumination and pain. Cold water causes you to be in the moment, he says. “Going into the cold brought a lot of space, like stillness in my mind. It gave me moments of time to stop the agony, the why, why, why ten thousand times a day.”

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