Will you take the plunge?

A resurgence is happening. The return of the cold plunge (dip). People are rediscovering the benefits of getting out to dip in cold water. What is all the fuss about? Why should you take the plunge? Read on to be convinced based on my own experience of cold plunging.

My journey to frequent dippage

It was a day in May that I found myself called to dip in the ocean. I knew I needed some company to make myself accountable so I hit up my old neighbours Jim and Beth. We felt exhilarated afterwards albeit a bit chilly so we headed for coffee. We made it a weekly thing because we loved it so much. Fast forward two years and we have built a community (Kits Dip Society) of 60+ dippers and we’ve never missed a weekly dip!

"Cold exposure has led me to dive into another dimension of growth and transformation."

cold plunge

What is all the fuss about?

Getting into the cold water for a mere 3 minutes gives you a whole host of benefits.

Here are some I’ve personally experienced in my 2 years of weekly cold plunges:

  • Building grit – Getting up, half asleep at 7am in a morning to go in the cold ocean takes courage. Doing this weekly has helped me build grit to keep pushing myself outside my comfort zone. This has spread into other areas of my life.
  • Improves mental health – I feel happier and more zen, especially on the day of the dip. 
  • Improves circulation – When I started cold plunging my feet used to always be COLD. After 2 years of plunging I’d actually go as far as saying my feet are usually the toastiest part of my body now.
  • Reduces inflamation – Cold plunging has helped with my eczema and stopped delayed onset muscle soreness after workouts.
  • Oneness with nature – Being in the ocean, with the sand beneath my toes, mountains in the background, sun on my skin, exposed to the cold makes me feel at one with nature.
  • Energy release and cleanse – Getting into the cold water helps release and cleanse energy that I’ve accumulated in the day and want to move. It provides a complete release and reset.
  • Variety is the spice of life – Every dip is unique and beautiful in its own way. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter. Rain, shine, snow, hail. Alone, with another, with a group, with a community. Sunrise, midday sun, sunset, darkness. Low tide, mid tide, high tide, king tide. Featuring seals, featuring swallows, featuring geese, featuring crabs. 
  • Builds community – Cold plunging created a community that helped get me through the Covid season and continues to bring new friends into my circle every week. 
  • Altered states, another dimension of transformation – Cold exposure can lead to an altered state of consciousness. This led me to dive into another dimension of growth and transformation by experimenting with other things that induce altered states such as breathwork and psychedelics.

How do I start?

topless man with water droplets on his face
  • Cold showers? – A lot of people start by taking cold showers. Turning the shower cold for 30 seconds one day, a minute the next etc. I personally find cold showers more challenging than getting into the cold ocean. It’s easy to enjoy my hot shower without turning it cold. Whereas, if I’m making the effort to rock up to the ocean to dip it means I’m committed to going in. 
  • No ego – Having said that, one point I’ll make is that there is no ego in cold plunging. Go in for as long as you comfortably can and build up. I’ve seen people go in for 30 seconds on their first dip and be in for 3 minutes by their third. 
  • Keep calm and dip on – There’s nothing worse than someone running in with their arms flailing when you’re trying to keep calm and focus. Walk in calmly and slowly. 
  • Focus on the out breath – Focusing on elongating the out breath really helps you regulate your breathing and get over the initial shock. Once you do that you’ll easily be in for a while. 
  • Head dunk – Dunking my head fully under and holding my breath for a few seconds before surfacing helps fully regulate my breath.

Take the plunge

After all that, I’m sure you’re ready to take the plunge. Drop us (Kits Dip Society) a message to join us for a dip if you’re in Vancouver, Canada. If not, just grab a few mates and try it. You never know, you might end up building a cold plunging community and writing a blog about it two years later!

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