You are new to the Wim Hof Method (WHM) and are looking for insights from seasoned practitioners? Congrats, you came to the right place. I am certified instructor and practicing the WHM for several years on an almost daily base.This article aims to facilitate your individual WHM journey and makes it even more enjoyable.Personally, I started out head first, with few guiding measures and it took me a while to get a clear understanding on of the technique and how to get the most benefits out of the method.I am sure, I could have avoided several hiccups, if I’d followed these tips.
1. TAKE IT SLOW
The method is simple yet going deep in your physiology. Your body and mind may need some time to adapt to the changes on the outside and inside. Therefore, slow is smooth and smooth is fast. Don’t get discouraged if you experience some minor setbacks on the way. Patience, perseverance, are important skills to master your mind and body. Routines are what yield results, where fit the method in your daily schedule? Consider that the exercise is best done on empty stomach. You may start with as little as 5 min daily breathing practice but repeat it for 4-5 times a week. To kick-off the cold exposure, ending your shower with 30 seconds of cold shower might just be enough.
2. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY
Yes, sometimes we must seek discomfort to get into power, but the method aims to build awareness for your mental and physical condition. So, it is essential, that you observe the signals your body and mind are sending you. If you feel you need a rest take a break from the exercise. Embrace a self-respecting and non-competitive mindset, “feeling is understanding”, as Wim puts it. It is quite normal that, you may dislike the idea of cold exposure, to start with but soon you will feel, that it is OK, even great. The old cold becomes your warm friend. However, if you experience prolonged shivering or other physical discomfort, 2-3 hours after the training, you
should reconsider your approach to the cold exposure.
3. CONNECT TO THE TRIBE
Good news! You are not alone, WHM might as well be the next big thing in terms of health movement. Why? Because it lives up to its promises. By engaging with the community, you are leveraging knowledge and experience of fellow practitioners. This enhances and enriches your personal journey. So, go ahead and search for a local swim buddies or post your questions in a forum or Facebook group. You will be surprised by the many welcoming replies.
4. KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PROGRESS
It’s a science underpinned method and the changes in your physiology are measurable. To do so, I recommend capturing some details on the training protocol established and take written notes of mood, energy level, body’s weight, resting heart and retention time. Measuring these on a regular basis, will allow you, to see how far you came and helps you to understand how changes in the training or your external environment (e.g. stress levels) leads to different outcomes.
5. KEEP IT SAFE
Embracing nature as our teacher, we must approach the practice in a respectful and careful manner. The WHM is considered safe but there are some safety measures to keep an eye on. For example, dizziness may occur during the breathing, therefore practice the method always in a safe environment. Take a few minutes to lookup some of the safety content
6. EMBRACE A POSITIVE MINDSET
Building a positive mindset, is an essential part of the Wim Hof Method. Embrace the journey, with a positive “can-do” attitude. We consciously exposing ourselves to various stressors (e.g. cold) and thereby activating stress reaction patterns. Condition yourself to demonstrate a self-improving stress reaction, stay relaxed and breathe deeply. This will
increase your stress resilience in your daily life.
7. PARTICIPATE IN A WORKSHOP
Attending a workshop by a certified instructor, may be one of best things you can do,to get the most out of your practice. In a workshop setting you to get detailed explanation of the technique and the supervised setting allows you to immerse yourself fully in the experience. Participant quote: “I started WHM on my own, but only after I attended a live workshop all “clicked” together and changed my life”. Know that, the group energy allows you to go even deeper in the experience.
I hope these tips will make your journey even more fruitful. It’s a beautiful method which brings much-needed change into our lives and communities. Reach out to me for any questions, coaching requests or information. Give your best and get the best!
Note: Please consider that this document reflects my opinion and is not an official document.
Beat Sorgenfrei Brun, Certified Wim Ho Method Instructor