Estimated reading time: 24 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.
Table of contents
- Where to Buy an Ice Bath in Thailand?
- Why Thailand for Ice baths?
- What is an Ice Bath?
- Benefits Of Ice Baths
- Ice Bath for The Face, Benefits & Risks
- Ice Baths, Old or New?
- Hypothermia and Cold Weather Injuries
- Ice Tub Therapy
- Cold Plunge
- Cardiovascular and Lymph Health
- Thermogenesis and Brown Fat
- Cold Shock and Hormesis
- Ice Baths in Bangkok
- Ice Baths in Phuket
- Ice Baths in Chiang Mai
- Ice Baths in Koh Phangan
- Ice Baths in Koh Tao
- Ice Bath in Pattaya
- Real Ice Baths
- Single Person Ice Baths
- Ice Cubes, not Ice Blocks
- Expert Cold Exposure Training
- FAQs About Ice Baths
- Ice Bath Workshops around Thailand
Where to Buy an Ice Bath in Thailand?
The best Ice Bath to buy in Thailand is the awesome Yen Bath.
Design by experts and used by professionals.
Set a new standard in your wellness routine with the Yen Bath – the premier ice bath designed specifically for Thailand’s climate.
Crafted from high-quality, insulated materials, our portable bath provides an unbeatable combination of comfort, durability, and efficient temperature control, making it the best choice for cooling off and revitalising your senses.
Now available for purchase, the Yen Bath stands ready to transform your ice bathing experience in the heartland of Thailand.
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 called “cold water immersion, ” or 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 Of Ice Baths
Here are some ice bath benefits:
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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 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.
Read our latest blog about ice bath benefits to learn more in-depth.
Ice Bath for The Face, Benefits & Risks
Submerging only your face in an ice bath can have several benefits; below is a brief overview of these benefits:
- Reduces inflammation: Cold therapy is known to reduce inflammation, and submerging your face in an ice bath can help reduce inflammation and puffiness in your face.
- Tightens pores: Ice water can cause your pores to contract, making them appear smaller and tighter. This can give your face a smoother and more even appearance.
- Stimulates circulation: The cold temperature of the ice water can increase blood flow to your face, bringing fresh oxygen and nutrients to your skin cells. This can leave your skin looking healthier and more radiant.
- Relieves headaches: Ice therapy effectively reduces the pain and discomfort associated with headaches, and submerging your face in an ice bath can be a quick and easy way to help alleviate headache symptoms.
- Boosts mood and energy: The shock of cold water on your face can trigger the release of endorphins, which are natural mood and energy boosters. This can leave you feeling refreshed and invigorated.
Risks of Submerging the Face in an Ice Bath
Knowing the potential risks of immersing your face in ice water is important, especially if you’re considering it for health purposes. One significant risk is the possibility of experiencing a shallow water blackout, also known as a hypoxic blackout.
During a shallow water blackout, oxygen levels in the body can become depleted due to prolonged breath-holding or insufficient breathing while in the water. This can lead to loss of consciousness, which can be extremely dangerous if it occurs while the face is submerged in water.
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 exposed to cold water, wind, air and rain. One may encounter 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.
Ice Tub Therapy
Ice tub therapy is a form of medical treatment that involves submerging the body in a specially designed ice bath. The term therapy is typically used in the medical industry to refer to treatment by doctors for a disease or other health condition. In the case of ice tub therapy, the goal is to reduce inflammation and swelling, relieve pain, and promote healing.
Ice tub therapy is designed specifically for medical hydrotherapy treatments, unlike ice baths, which are often associated with sports performance, mental and physical performance, and enhancing overall health. The ice tubs used in therapy are typically found in clinics or hospitals and are specially designed to provide the controlled temperature and duration necessary for effective treatment.
The main difference between ice tub therapy and ice baths used for other purposes is the intention behind the treatment. Ice tub therapy is focused on treating a specific medical condition or injury, while ice baths used for performance and health enhancement are not necessarily intended to treat a disease.
While ice baths and cold plunges are forms of hydrotherapy that involve immersing the body in cold water, also known as CWI or Cold Water Immersion, there are some key differences between them.
Firstly, ice baths are typically filled with water and ice, which makes the bath temperature as close to freezing as possible, usually around 0-10 degrees Celsius. In contrast, cold plunges are usually set at a temperature range of 14-17 degrees Celsius.
Additionally, the size and design of the two are different. Ice baths are typically small bathtubs or containers filled with ice and water, while cold plunges are usually small pools designed to be “plunged” into and then immediately exited. Cold plunges are often used in contrast therapy, where the user alternates between hot and cold environments, such as a sauna or steam room, followed by a quick plunge into the cold water.
Another important difference is that cold plunges do not necessarily involve the use of ice. Instead, they are cooled down using heat pumps or other water-cooling methods. Cold plunges are usually short-lived, with users only spending 10-30 seconds in the water before exiting.
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
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.
Like 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 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 in 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.
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
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.
Ice Baths in Koh Phangan
Koh Phangan is a small island in Thailand with 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 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.
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 bath has 350kg of ice! In our large group teak wood ice bath, we put 800kg 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 you can’t beat a single person’s ice bath for your own healthy development.
You can choose single-person or group ice baths at our workshops.
Ice Cubes, not Ice Blocks
To cool the water down effectively, ice cubes are the best. The “ice tubes” are preferable, which are ice cubes with a hole in. We put between 400 and 800kg of ice cubes in each bath.
Ice tubes or tube ice cool down water faster than large ice blocks 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 more heat can quickly be transferred from the water to the ice. 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 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
We are 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.
Studies show you benefit from an ice bath even at 15°C or below. 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.
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.
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.
Research indicates that immersion 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. If you have reservations about cold showers, opting for a warm one may be better.
Taking a cold bath after a workout is a matter of personal preference and may have 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, deciding 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.
Cold Exposure, or Deliberate Cold Exposure, is the controlled exposure to cold temperatures outside the normal range experienced daily to elicit positive adaptations.
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.
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!
- Dr. Rhonda Patrick, Cold exposure blog post
- Andrew Huberman, Ph.D, The Science & Use of Cold Exposure for Health & Performance
- Human physiological responses to immersion into water of different temperatures
- Altered brown fat thermoregulation and enhanced cold-induced thermogenesis in young, healthy, winter-swimming men.
- Impact of Cold-Water Immersion Compared with Passive Recovery Following a Single Bout of Strenuous Exercise on Athletic Performance in Physically Active Participants: A Systematic Review with Meta-analysis and Meta-regression