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One of the best ways to train your hands and feet to be more resistant to the cold is by using temperature changes.

The cold and heat, so temperature changes, are an amazing way to train our circulatory system. 

All you need are two bowls and follow along with me.


how do you train your hands and your


to be more resistant to the cold

ever since winter has come the snow has


i’ve gotten tons of requests to talk

about this especially since i’ve been

posting videos of me working out

on my bare feet in the snow and people

are like how do you do this

how are your feet capable of with

standing that cold

without getting hurt without feeling a

lot of pain well

i want to share with you in this video a

very simple but a very profound

practice to not only make your hands and


more resilient to the cold but also to

practice some deep inner awareness

and to take up this meditative practice

to get to know

a little bit more about how your

biological system works

now as a biohacker of course i’m always

profoundly interested

in how our biology works and when it

comes to

thermoregulation which is the system

with which uh your

body regulates your body your


in relation to the outside environment

there are a lot of very interesting

things that are coming into play like

metabolism for example or even brown fat

tissue and something that is often


is the beautiful beautiful workings of


circulatory system the cold and the heat

so temperature changes are an amazing

way to train our circulatory system so

imagine that every part of your body

where you could bleed

basically um there is vascular tissue

there are capillaries running through

every millimeter

of your skin for example now as soon as


go into the cold like for example your

hands or your feet they touch the cold

then what is going to happen is that

that capillary tissue

which are basically like little tubes

these little tubes they’re going to

constrict they’re going to constrict the

amount of blood that flows into that


this is of course a genius mechanism

where your body understands that hey

this outside temperature is colder than

my inside temperature

so i should not have as much warm blood

flowing to this place because that’s

where i will lose the heat

so in order to make sure you maintain

your body temperature

you will have this vasoconstriction

response pushing the warm blood back

more to the core of the body and then of

course you’ve noticed that if you go

into a very hot place like into a sauna

on a very hot day your skin gets flush

with red right you start to look red

which means that

your these same little tubes right these


they have dilated they have relaxed

which allows

more blood to flow to the surface of the

skin when you can lose

more of that heat if you are too hot


so when you get colder faster


warm blood goes to the core when you get

warmer faster dilation warm blood

goes to the extremities where it can

lose heat

it’s a genius system and it’s always

working for you now

if we spend our lives in temperature

controlled rooms and we’re always


then our circulatory system does not

have a lot of challenges which means it

doesn’t have a lot of reason

to switch between constricting and


contract relax so what we really

want is for our circulatory system to be

very very

flexible especially in these peripheral

parts of our body like for example the


and in the extremities because we have a

hundred thousand kilometers of vascular

tissue of these beautiful blood vessels

running through our body

and the more capable they are of

contracting when they need to when

relaxing when they need to

the more flexible our circulatory system

will be and of course our circulatory


is a very core foundation of our

overall health anyway as soon as you


the cold with your hand in your hands or

your feet of course you get this

vascular response and a lot of people

aren’t used to it

what you also get is of course you get

your nervous system wants to pull away

from it

and because your hands and your feet are

basically antennae

right as soon as you touch something

that might be dangerous or scary

you get this desire to pull away from it

right because it’s an antenna

you feel something and you want to pull

away from it and wanting to pull away

that signal is of course communicated

through pain so it can be very painful

to put your hands in the cold

and this is also something that you can

work with which you can do beautiful

practices with i’ve worked with people

even with chronic pain

where just working with their hands or

feet in the cold has allowed them to get

a completely different view of how pain

works in their body

now to keep it very simple today just


your capillaries want to do contract

relax and they need to get some training

for that and

we need to train ourselves to trust that

our body

will regulate itself through this

vascular response and also that this

pain that we’re feeling is not

necessarily damaged but for that we need

to very

slowly progress into training with the

cold so that we can understand the

difference between

pain and actual damage because we do not

want to damage our feet and if you

are excited about cold training and

you’re going outside to train with the


in winter days like this always be very

careful take it step by step because one

thing that happens of course with less


and with the cold is that you get

numbness so you don’t realize that you

might be damaging your feet

especially by the way when they’re

putting all these salts on the

you know these anti-frost things on the


do not walk barefoot in those i’ve seen

some pretty bad things happen when

people walk barefoot in those

anyway there’s a very simple practice

that you can do which is basically sauna


for your hands and your feet and all you

need is two very simple buckets

whatever fits your hands your feet i’m

just going to show you because these are

glass so you can see my hands i’m just

going to do it with one hand

one bucket over here this one is

lukewarm water so this is

in a normal room temperature slightly

warm to the touch but it’s definitely

not hot okay

and this one is tap water which i’m now

going to make colder by adding some snow

and of course i can also put my hands

directly in the snow

but i want to make a nice little sludge

so i’ve got this cold sludge right now

and what i’m going to do is i’m going to

give myself contrast

therapy training which simply means i’m

going to put my hands in the ice cold


for 10 seconds and immediately i feel

the pain immediately i feel that my

capillaries want to constrict and i can

even feel you know my nerves in my arm

getting kind of stressed like what’s

going on

we should pull away from this and what

i’m also noticing is that

my my neck muscles and shoulder muscles


trying to make contracting pulling

muscles motions which is interesting

i’ll get to in a second

that was about 10 seconds after that i’m

going to take my hand out of the cold


for another about 10 seconds so i want

it to acclimatize to

the outside temperature normally i would

do this inside but for the

setting of this video i decided to do

the video outside in the snow

but do this at room temperature give

that about 10 seconds and then give it


10 seconds in the lukewarm water it’s a

wonderful feeling by the way i’m just

doing one hand at a time but of course

you can do two hands at a time grab a


bucket and this also works for your feet


as i’m going back and forth i’ll maybe

do if i

you know when i started out i was doing

a training session i might do five


right so that’s done that was about 10

seconds again

just going to give it about 10 seconds

to acclimatize to the outside air

and then i’m going to put it in there

again all right actually i’m going to do

my other hand now because otherwise

i’ll be very neurotic um so like i said

as soon as i go into this ice cold water

i can also notice my muscles contract a

little bit of course your body wants to

pull away from this it wants to be like


pull away so as soon as you start

training with your feet and your hands

in the cold

be very meditative with this really take

this as an opportunity

to learn how your body autonomically

regulates the constriction and dilation

of these vessels because

i promise you if you pay a lot of

attention in this process

and you really sit with it and breathe

with it breathe through your nose and

also study the responses that you’re

making internally you’re going to learn

a lot about yourself because this is

also pain training

so then you can also ask in the meantime

instead of just doing this in front of

the tv and just watching the show just

sit and meditate

and ask yourself how do i respond to

pain how do i respond to cold

because this is a very important thing

to have this inner line of awareness

between your mind and body where you

really understand

how you respond to pain and discomfort

and also

how your body does these beautiful

autonomic processes

through this process i have trained my

feet to be able to withstand a long

duration of cold my longest time in the


i don’t like telling people times

because it’s not about any goal

it’s not about reaching any certain time

but i’ve been out with my bare feet in

on the snow for about 40 45 minutes and

it took me about 10 minutes to recover

and i was completely fine and my feet

felt completely charged now this is not

a goal

please uh just a minute or two is enough

to get

all of the benefits that you want the

point is that we want to sit with it

and we want to very slowly allow our

body to progress so this is training

right so we need to have an amount of

training that our body can easily

recover from

so i might do five or six repetitions of

this in a day

and then the next day do it again then

the next day do it again especially you

have to

if you have this really bad you know

winter hands or icy feet or snowy balls

sorry all right that’s my favorite joke


if you have these very bad winter hands

you get on your bike in the winter you

step out and immediately

you get very painful hands and this is a


process to start with now of course as

snow falls and people are getting

excited about being outside in the cold

and in the snow everybody wants to run

outside on their feet and of course

yeah then you’re not going to be able to

last more than 10 or 20 seconds

that makes perfect sense so if you add

this to your training

you will start to see benefits and this

is not just i mean this seems like a

very simple training protocol like

barely anything is happening but a lot

is happening on the inside

for example through this process i’ve

been able to warm

my hands and feet up at will so if i’m

in the cold

one time i was on a mountain i was

guiding a group

we were in a snowstorm somebody got in a

little bit of trouble

and my hands were really cold and i had

to help this person and i could will my


through understanding this process at

some level will my hands to be warm in

that moment

right i’ve even worked with for example

professional surfers or swimmers

who would have training so these are

people who are highly trained right so

they already have so much

training they have they’re so healthy

and they still have these really cold

hands and all they did

was simple contrast buckets and they

would improve

their circulation to the point that they

could you know swim or

use their surfboard without their hands

cramping up anymore which is a huge

performance gain

so there’s a lot to this but it’s so

simple 10 minutes per day

10 seconds here 10 seconds there you

know 10 seconds in the air in between

and then slowly based on how you feel

you can progress if you like right so

you can do 20 seconds 20 here

up to 30 seconds or up to a minute just

really follow your feelings and don’t

push yourself be careful the cold is

such a powerful force

don’t overdo it keep it relaxed let me

know if this is helpful

and i hope to see you very soon enjoy

the practice

peace out


Written by Kasper

“The Breathwork Biohacker”

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