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Ice Bath Thailand

Ice full of ice cubes in Thailand

Estimated reading time: 20 minutes

With average temperatures of 28°C year-round, highs of 40°C and humidity of 90%, cooling down in an Ice Bath in Bangkok, Phuket, Chiang Mai, Koh Phangan or anywhere in Thailand is guaranteed to feel amazing!

Thailand is hot all year round, with no true Winter season. No natural locations, such as rivers or lakes, offer cold exposure or cold water swimming. Even the tap water averages around 24°C, so cold showers are a no-go.

The great news is you can still enjoy an ice bath at our studio in Bangkok or one of the many Wim Hof Method workshops and events we hold around Thailand. 

We have given an overview below to understand more about ice baths and cold plunges.

Why Thailand for Ice baths?

Thailand is quickly becoming a popular destination for those seeking to explore the transformative practice of cold exposure and ice bath workshops, courses, and training. However, it’s important to note that while many retreats, spas, and onsens offer cold pools, true ice baths are less widely available.

One of the primary reasons Thailand is a great location for ice bath workshops and training is its tropical climate. The warm and humid weather throughout the year contrasts the invigorating sensation of a cold plunge into an ice bath.

Despite the limited availability of proper ice baths in Thailand, several high-quality retreat centres still offer this experience.

These centres provide a safe and comfortable environment for cold exposure, with experienced facilitators and state-of-the-art facilities to ensure the practice is done safely and effectively.

In addition to the few places that offer ice baths, Thailand is also known for its natural beauty and reputation as a wellness destination, creating a unique environment for those looking to explore the practice of cold exposure.

What is an Ice Bath?

A true ice bath is a tub, bucket or bath filled with ice cubes to bring the temperature of the water down below at least 15 degrees Celsius. At 15 degrees Celsius temperature, studies have shown benefits are gained.

Ice cubes or ice tubes are best, as they have more surface area to cool down the water. Large blocks of ice don’t cool the water efficiently as they take longer to melt and have less surface area.

An ice bath close to freezing is best for maximum benefit when practising the Wim Hof Method.

If the bath has no ice, either it’s cooled by a machine or the ice has melted. Technically it’s no longer an ice bath. The keyword here is the word “ice”. This would be classed as “cold water immersion”, also known as CWI.

When measuring the ice bath temperature, many people use floating thermometers, which only measure the ice it’s sitting on. Don’t be fooled into thinking the entire bath contents are at that temperature. This is why we use thermometers that measure the bottom, middle and top temperatures. We make sure our baths are as close to zero degrees as possible.

Ice baths are known as Cold Water Immersion (CWI) or cold plunges. Deliberate Cold Exposure is often referenced in scientific studies. 

Deliberate Cold Exposure means the process of intentional exposure to extreme cold.

Usually, ice baths are practised after intense physical activity. The body is submerged in ice water for a fixed duration of time. Studies show that regular ice baths can benefit the mind as well as the body in a myriad of ways. 

No surprise, an increasing number of sportspeople are incorporating it into their routines.  Athletes worldwide take an ice bath post-practice or game to boost their recovery and strength. Some studies suggest an ice bath alleviates muscle damage and discomfort after intense physical activity.

As part of the 3 Pillars of the Wim Hof Method, ice baths give additional benefits than an ice bath alone. Practising the WHM requires all three pillars to be completed. Breathing, Cold exposure and Mindset.

Most people experience real ice baths for the first time at our Wim Hof Method workshops. Once they experience the power of an ice bath, many return for the ice bath workshops, Breath Fire & Ice or the Yoga & Ice Bath sessions.

Benefits To Do Ice Baths

Here are some potential benefits of ice baths:

  1. Inflammation: Ice baths may help reduce inflammation in the body. The cold water will force your blood vessels to constrict, reducing blood flow to the area. This can help decrease swelling and inflammation.
  2. Improved muscle recovery: Ice baths have been shown to help improve muscle recovery after exercise. Cold water immersion may help decrease muscle soreness and speed up recovery.
  3. Increased circulation: Cold water immersion may help increase circulation in the body, as blood vessels constrict and dilate upon exiting the cold water. This may help improve overall cardiovascular health.
  4. Reduced stress and anxiety: Ice baths may also have mental health benefits. Exposure to cold water has been shown to activate the parasympathetic nervous system, which helps to reduce stress and anxiety.
  5. Boosted immune system: Some research suggests that cold water immersion may also boost the immune system. Exposure to cold water may stimulate the production of white blood cells, which are important for fighting off infections and diseases.

It’s important to note that while ice baths can provide potential benefits, they may not be suitable for everyone. Those with certain medical conditions or injuries should consult with their healthcare provider before trying ice baths. Additionally, it’s important to gradually introduce cold water immersion to the body and not stay in the water for too long to avoid negative side effects.

Ice Baths, Old or New?

Many think that the technique is new, but it isn’t. Coldwater treatment has been around for thousands of years. The Scandinavian countries have been immersing themselves in the experience of saunas and cold water for more than 2000 years now. Most countries in this region have saunas, hot water springs and cold water baths sprawling all over their land. 

Countries like Norway and Sweden have heated thermal baths and are popular tourist destinations. One can find a range of scented, hot and cold water saunas indoors and outdoors. This is referred to as Contract Therapy.

First, take a hot bath or sauna; this releases muscle tension. Follow it up by dunking yourself in cold water or rolling over the snow, which is possible in cold countries.

Hypothermia and Cold Weather Injuries

Hypothermia, as we know, is a medical condition in which the body loses heat much quicker than it can produce heat and happens when one is exposed to cold water, wind, air and rain. Often, one may even encounter some severe injuries, popularly known as cold weather injuries. These may include frostbite, frostnip, chilblains, immersion foot, trench foot and hypothermia. 

To overcome hypothermia and other related conditions, training your body to withstand cold temperatures is essential; in this endeavour, ice baths can prove helpful. Taking ice baths can increase your body’s resilience against low temperatures and strengthen it over time. However, regular practice is the key to ensuring desired results.

Our Wim Hof Method instructor has full experience and qualifications to take you through ice bath training. It is imperative you only use a certified Wim Hof Method instructor. Many fake instructors are advertising that they teach the method. We are aware of many that teach dangerous cold exposure training. The only person that will be at risk is you. So don’t accept anyone who’s not a certified instructor.

Below is a short breakdown of some of the most studied benefits of ice baths. 

Cardiovascular and Lymph Health

When a person sits in ice-cold water, his blood vessels start constricting. After some time, when he moves out, the vessels start dilating again. This process proves helpful for flushing out metabolic waste. Simultaneously, it challenges your body mentally by exposing it to different stresses and stimuli. 

Besides, ice baths are advantageous for your lymph, which contains white blood cells (WBCs) and intestinal fluid. Lymph nodes do not have a pumping process. But an ice bath is known for opening vessels and pumping blood throughout the body. It has a similar effect on the lymph nodes, and the stagnant fluid in these nodes also starts moving.  

Above all, ice baths boost blood flow, implying that the cells receive more nutrients and oxygen and faster recovery.  

Thermogenesis and Brown Fat

Brown Fat, Brown adipose tissue (BAT)
Brown Fat, Brown adipose tissue (BAT) – Brown Fat Cell, Beige Fat Cell, White Fat Cell

Scientifically, any human body can tolerate a 10-degree drop or a 5-degree increase in temperature.  All warm-blooded mammals have an inherent mechanism to keep themselves warm, called thermogenesis. Everyone knows this, but are you aware that even an ice bath can induce thermogenesis? Yes, it does and is popularly called cold thermogenesis. 

Just like how sweat helps you keep cool, cold thermogenesis helps raise body temperature. In research, it was found that cold thermogenesis activates brown cells. These brown fat cells raise the body’s metabolic rate in cold conditions. So, when you take cold therapy such as ice baths, you put your body under extreme conditions to boost your health and fitness. 

As discussed earlier, it activates brown fat cells and helps burn calories. Besides, there is an increase in metabolism by 3 to 5 times and due to shivering. It can also ease delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS). However, it should not be self-induced and must be done under the vigilant eyes of an instructor. 

Cold Shock and Hormesis

Cold shock is a kind of stress that causes hormesis. Hormesis is a biphasic dose-response of an environmental agent to a low dose that causes physiological benefits in the long run. This cold shock treatment has been in practice for years. When used in the right doses, it can stimulate hormonal and physiological reactions to deal with various threats. 

The best thing about cold stress is its impact on the immune system. A mere 20 minutes of exposure to ice baths can lead to a 200-300 per cent increase in norepinephrine that inhibits inflammation-causing hormone cytokines. Also, cold exposure activates the lymphatic system speeding up the release of toxins from the body. 

Cold shock increases antioxidative cellular defence. This includes the superoxide dismutase pathway and internal antioxidant glutathione, improving immune cell functioning. Another eye-opening benefit of cold therapy is for the mind. Cold therapy boosts neurotransmitters that can lower pain and is also helpful in treating ADHD and depression by enhancing mood and vigilance, focus, and attention.  

Besides, hot conditions can also raise oxidative stress levels of a mammalian body and stimulate some positive effects. One of the finest examples comes from Wim Hof, The Ice Man. The secret to his resilience to extreme cold is shock proteins. They are special proteins produced by the human body when facing a random drift in climatic conditions. 

Shock proteins reverse the negative impact of temperature change, safeguard your cells, and stimulate body healing. For example, exposure to an ice bath produces antioxidants throughout the body and saves it from inflammation while increasing immunity. On the other hand, exposure to heat turns body cells more robust against stress and lowers cellular ageing.  

Ice Baths in Bangkok

The World Meteorological Organization voted Bangkok the hottest city due to its year-round high temperatures. If you have visited Bangkok, you will agree that the heat can be unbearable.

However, it doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy the ice bath here. On the contrary, we offer the best Ice Bath Bangkok experience available.

We host our regular Wim Hof Method workshops in Bangkok at our awesome city centre studio:

Welcome to our Wim Hof Method training facility in Bangkok, where we have everything you need to transform your body, mind, and spirit. The spacious breathing room is the perfect place to begin your practice, with ample natural light and a calming atmosphere to help you relax and focus.

After your breathing exercises, step into our barrel sauna and feel your worries melt away. The dry heat is perfect for soothing sore muscles and releasing tension.

For an even more invigorating experience, try our two single-person ice baths or large 2-person teak wood ice baths.

These ice baths provide a powerful contrast to the warmth of the sauna and help improve circulation, reduce inflammation, and increase energy levels.

YouTube video
Kam, The Thai Ice Women, taking an ice bath in Bangkok

When you’re ready, take a dip in the swimming pool. The pool is the perfect way to reset and refresh after an intense breathwork and cold therapy session. And to enhance your experience, we have a state-of-the-art sound system to provide the perfect background music to help you find your flow.

Our Wim Hof Method studio is the ultimate space for anyone looking to optimize their health, increase their energy levels, and find balance in their lives. We can’t wait to share this incredible journey with you!

Ice Baths in Phuket

Kam taking an ice bath on Bang Tao beach Phuket
Kam, taking an ice bath on Bang Tao beach Phuket.

Taking a zero-degree ice bath on a beach in Phuket is an exhilarating experience that can leave you feeling energized, refreshed, and invigorated.

The contrast between the warm and sunny tropical climate and the icy cold water provides a unique and memorable sensation unlike anything else.

As you step into the frigid water, your body reacts almost immediately. Your breathing may become shallow and rapid, and your skin may turn red as blood rushes to the surface to protect your vital organs from the cold.

But as we guide you and your body acclimates to the temperature, a sense of calm and relaxation may wash over you, and you may begin to feel a sense of clarity and focus that is difficult to achieve through other means.

The stunning natural beauty of the surroundings also enhances the experience of an ice bath on a Phuket beach. The crystal clear water, pristine beaches, and lush tropical vegetation provide a breathtaking backdrop for the practice of cold exposure.

The sun beating down on your skin as you emerge from the ice bath provides a warming contrast that can leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

Our ice bath and Wim Hof Method workshops in Phuket sell out within one day. People love to experience the power of a real ice bath on the beach in Phuket.

Mixed Martial Arts, aka MMA, Muay Thai gyms and fitness retreats enjoy our ice bath workshops. 

If you want the best ice bath in Phuket, contact us today. Or check out this page for the Wim Hof Method workshops in Phuket.

Ice Baths in Chiang Mai

One of the oldest cities in Thailand, Chiang Mai is an extremely popular tourist destination. The city’s history dates back to 1300, when King Mengrai founded it.

It has been a retreat for the rich and famous worldwide with its temples and healing spa treatments.

Chiang Mai retreats are beautiful, with a multitude of treatments. Only a select few offer real ice baths. So check before you book.

YouTube video

Ice Baths in Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan is a small island in Thailand that has amazing weather, beauty, sea, beach and retreat qualities that will make it your ultimate way of recouping.

It is also great for health benefits because it is perfect if you want to escape life’s hustle and bustle.

We have conducted several workshops and retreats in Ko Phangan. The most popular being the Wim Hof Method Koh Phangan workshops and events. Our clients have told us that the ice bath in Koh Phangan was a mind-blowing experience. We set the ice bath on the beach, looking out to the clear blue sea. It’s simply amazing.

Ice Baths in Koh Tao

Koh Tao is the island’s most popular tourist spot, both famous and new. It has all of the features that travellers are looking for, from beautiful beaches to world-class diving. It is also Thailand’s original sea turtle conservation area.

We are the only certified Wim Hof Method instructors to hold workshops on Koh Tao.

Check our event schedule to find out when you can take an ice bath in Koh Tao.

Ice Bath in Pattaya

We have held several workshops and events in Pattaya. From the Wim Hof Method Fundamentals workshops to private and corporate WHM workshops.

The Dusit Thani Pattaya Hotel is one of our favourite locations due to its awesome facilities and glorious views for ice bathing.

Kam taking an ice bath in Pattaya at the Dusit Thani
Kam taking an ice bath in Pattaya at the Dusit Thani

Real Ice Baths

Spas and Hotels use water chillers to cool the water for their cold plunge pools. This can get the water temperature to no less than 12°C. But most only take the water to 15°C.

Our ice baths are real ice baths! We use food-grade ice cubes. We put in 350kg of ice for each bath! Yes, that’s right, each of our baths has 350kg of ice! Now that is a real ice bath!

Single Person Ice Baths

Ice bath therapy is a personal experience. The bather should be focused on only themselves. Relaxed, calm and at rest in the ice. This is why we only use single-person ice baths.

Group ice baths can be a big distraction. The water is moving and sloshing around. People get in and out at different times. Some people may disturb others. Group ice baths can be good for corporate and group events. But for your own health development, you can’t beat a single person’s ice bath.

At our workshops; we have the choice of single person ice baths or a group ice bath.

Single person ice baths and a group ice bath photo at the Breath Inspired studio in bangkok
Single person ice baths and a group ice bath at the Breath Inspired studio in Bangkok

Ice Cubes, not Ice Blocks

To cool the water down effectively, ice cubes are the best. The “ice tubes” are more preferable, which are ice cubes with a hole in. This is why we put between 400 and 800kg of ice cubes in each bath.

Ice tubes or tube ice cool down water faster than large blocks of ice because they have a higher surface area to volume ratio. When ice is placed in water, heat energy from the surrounding water is transferred to the ice, causing it to melt. The heat transfer rate is directly proportional to the surface area of the ice in contact with the water.

Ice tubes or tube ice have a larger surface area per unit of volume compared to larger blocks of ice. This means that more heat can be transferred from the water to the ice in a shorter amount of time. As a result, ice tubes or tube ice can cool down water more quickly than larger blocks of ice.

Additionally, ice tubes or tube ice are smaller, allowing for more efficient and even distribution throughout a container. This ensures that the entire bath water is cooled down quickly and evenly, rather than just the bath’s surface.

Large blocks of ice are sometimes used in gyms, spas and hotels. But these are simply inefficient and won’t reduce the water temperature fast. Expect no less than 12-15°C for an ice bath using large ice blocks.

Expert Cold Exposure Training

Wim Hof with Kam and Stuart - Breath Inspired
Wim Hof with Kam and Stuart – Breath Inspired

We are the experts in Ice Bath and Cold Exposure Training. Level 2 certified Wim Hof Method instructors with extensive experience in cold exposure.

We have undergone extensive training directly with Wim Hof himself. This includes completing the Wim Hof Method summer expedition in Spain and the winter expedition in Poland.

These expeditions are intense training programs exposing participants to extreme cold and high-altitude environments.

As a result, we can offer a high level of expertise and guidance to participants in their Wim Hof Method workshops and sessions.

From hiking up sub-zero mountains wearing only shorts to smashing ice with an axe in frozen waterfalls. You can be assured of receiving the best ice bath training.

FAQs About Ice Baths

Below are some common questions about ice baths. We will build this list of questions up over time to give you a solid resource. If you have any questions, you can send them to us.

What temperature do you start to get benefits from an ice bath?

Studies show that even at 15°C or below, you start to get benefits from an ice bath. Remember, you always need to know why you are doing the ice bath in the first place. The goal will then determine the best temperature and duration.

How cold are the cold plunges at the Spa and Onsens?

Spa and Onsens cold plunges are usually around 17°C. Cooling water down all day can be expensive, so don’t expect the commercial spa and onsens to offer 0°C plunge pools.

Should I take an ice bath after weight training?

Getting into an Ice Bath after resistance training will block the mTOR pathway involved in the adaptation for growth. Immersing the body in the cold after training can short-circuit & prevent hypertrophy or muscle growth response. So it’s better to avoid an ice bath immediately after weight training and wait four hours.

Can I take a cold shower right after a workout?

Research indicates that immersing oneself in cold water after resistance training can impede the mTOR pathway responsible for the growth adaptation process. Although showers may not cover the entire body with cold water, it is difficult to determine whether it is advisable or not. If you have reservations about cold showers, it may be better to opt for a warm one instead.

Is a cold bath after workout a good idea

Taking a cold bath after a workout is a matter of personal preference and may have both benefits and drawbacks. Some studies suggest that cold water immersion can reduce muscle inflammation and soreness, improve blood circulation, and enhance recovery after exercise. On the other hand, cold baths may also interfere with muscle growth and adaptation by blocking the mTOR pathway. It’s important to note that a cold bath will cover the entire body in cold water, which may be more effective than a cold shower. Ultimately, the decision to take a cold bath after a workout depends on individual goals and preferences. If you are concerned about the potential negative effects of cold water immersion, you may opt for a warm bath or other recovery methods.

What is Cold Exposure?

Cold Exposure, or Deliberate Cold Exposure, is the controlled exposure to cold temperatures outside the normal range experienced daily to elicit positive adaptations.

What do ice baths do?

Ice baths involve immersing the body in cold water or ice for several minutes. This cold exposure is thought to have various physiological effects, including reducing inflammation, improving circulation, and enhancing recovery after exercise. Additionally, ice baths may help to improve mental health by reducing stress and improving mood.

How many ice baths per week is recommended?

According to a study conducted by Susanna Søberg, you should aim for a minimum of 11 minutes per week in an ice bath. This is the minimum time needed to achieve the full benefits of cold exposure.

This can be done in 2-4 ice baths lasting 1-5 minutes each, spread throughout the week.

It is important to note that the ice bath temperature should be cold enough to elicit a response from the body but safe enough to stay in for the recommended duration.

Another way of thinking about it is the ice bath should be cold enough that you don’t want to get in.

The goal is to make the experience uncomfortable but not intolerable. It is possible to do shorter, very cold exposures to elicit an adrenaline response, but the 11-minute weekly protocol is a good starting point for ongoing benefits.

Ice Bath Workshops around Thailand

To learn more about our ice bath workshops, head to our contact page and send us a message.

We are the only ones in Thailand to offer you a real ice bath. So don’t settle for anything less. Learn and experience ice bathing, cold exposure and cold water immersion from the best.

Sign up for one of our weekly Breathwork, Ice Bath and Sauna sessions or a Wim Hof Method workshop to experience real ice baths. 

This is real cold exposure. This is a real ice bath!

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