What are the best protocols for cold exposure?


There are several protocols for cold exposure detailed by on the . Here's a summary of the best protocols for cold exposure based on the different goals and benefits discussed:

  1. General Cold Exposure:

    • Ideal temperature is one you can safely be in for 30 seconds to 3 minutes, with some discomfort that presents a challenge to stay in.
    • Temperature varies for individuals; aim for safety and discomfort sufficient to overcome the urge to leave 1.
  2. Enhancing Mental Health and Performance:

    • Deliberate cold exposure increases norepinephrine and epinephrine release.
    • Practice getting into cold uncomfortable temperatures for short durations to build resilience 2.
  3. Søberg Principle (for metabolism enhancement):

    • End with cold exposure and allow your body to reheat on its own after the cold.
    • Try to reach a point where you shiver either during or immediately after exposure to cold 3.

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  4. Recovery After Training:

    • Shorter cold exposure sessions (1, 2, or 3 minutes in colder temperatures) after training can help reduce soreness and improve recovery.
    • Cold water immersion is better than passive recovery for high-intensity exercise.
    • Avoid using cold immersion for up to 4 hours after strength/hypertrophy training if your main goal is muscle growth 4.
  5. Fat Loss Optimization:

    • Engage in cold exposure that induces shivering and involves cooling and rewarming of the body.
    • Go back and forth between the cold environment and a slightly warmer environment to activate shivering 5.

For more detailed instructions and information, you can also visit the website The Cold Plunge, where protocols for cold exposure are listed at zero cost.

Remember to listen to your body and ensure safety during cold exposure sessions, and consult with healthcare professionals if needed.