Project Description

Wim Hof Method Fundamentals for Athletes and Triathletes

My introduction to the Wim Hof Method

This is a very personal story. February 2019 found me running along the beach at Millom in the English Lakes district with Dan. It was a beautiful windswept day. Perfect for runnning.

When we returned to his home Dan pointed to a large stone trough fed by snow melt from the nearby fells. ‘We can do Wim Hof if you like’ Dan said waving at the freezing water. I had no idea what he meant. Curiosity took me to the Wim Hof website and from there to the Netherlands and Poland.

Why I became a Wim Hof Method Instructor

When Dan introduced me to ‘Wim Hof’ I was on medication for depression. This manifests itself as just complete and utter exhaustion with me. I’d been competing and training for about 9 months but recovery always took forever. Three weeks after subscribing to the Wim Hof Fundamentals online programme I went to see my Dr, an Ironman triathlete. He looked at me and correctly guessed I’d stopped taking the tablets. I handed him a copy of the Radbound Univerity study plus a book ‘The Inflamed Mind’ and told him how WHM had worked for me. Now I wanted to know more, in particular I needed to find out why it had worked.

Always the best way to learn is to teach. Becoming a Wim Hof instructor is not easy. I’ve met some brilliant people and had some unusual experiences on the way. What I like about Inner Fire is their need to get recognised scientific studies to back up any claims made for the WHM. That, and the benefits I get from practicing the method every day mean I have no hesitation in recommending it and instructing it. Experience the Wim Hof Method and judge for yourself.

The benefits of the Wim Hof Method for Tri sports athletes

Go to the Wim Hof Method site where you will find lots of information.

Three parts that apply to athletes are obvious:

  • The breathing practice improves your intercostal muscles and diaphram. These are the often neglected muscles that cause you to breath.
  • The cold exposure helps you acclimatise to the cold and really helps to relax when open water swimming
  • Improved focus with the breath hold and following meditation help with all training, raceing and recovery

From my experience the WHM has added to my training efficiency, I’ve raced better and it has benefited my recovery.

MORE interesting is the hormonal and cellular effects that the scientific studies of Wim Hof and WHM practitioners have shown. This is not speculation, nor extravegant claims, This is what reputable peer reviewed scientific studies have shown.

WHM Safety Information

Althouh there have been peer reviewed scientific studies to show the WHM is safe we would like you to watch this video because there are situations where you should not practice the WHM.


Wim Hof Method:The interesting stuff

Endotoxin study on Wim Hof at Radboud University. Where Wim showed how he could control his autoimmune system when infected by a bacteria. The study was repeated using a trained and control group. Showed how the WHM can influence the inflamatory response to a bacterial infection. The immune response was not affected. Their bodies continued to fight the infection but their inflamatory response was supressed.

AXIAK Spondyloathritis study which showed how the WHM can help control an over active inflamatory response. This is at the route of many autoimmune diseases like rumatoid arthritis. Chronic inflamation can be used by people suffering from AXIAK Spondyloathritis to control their disease inflamation and pain.

Brain over body Michigan Study at Waynne State University. An enquiry into Wim Hof’s ability to withstand the cold at will. Wim Hof was compared to a control group. He responded as the control group to chanes in temperature when he didn’t use the WHM. However, when he used his breathing and meditation techniques Wim was able to control his core temperature to withstand the cold.

Noble prize winning research has implications for the WH breathing method. This gives evidence as to the efficacy of the WHM. Our partners at Inner Fire are constantly searching for Scientific studies which can explain why the WHM is so effective for many people. There are currently many studies sponsored by Universities across the globe looking into how the WHM works and how it might be used to improve people’s health and disease control.

We have been asked if the WHM is effective at helping those with Covid-19. The answer is simple and is at the heart of the Inner Fire philosophy. We just don’t know. There have been no studies to test the WHM aginst the effects of a virus. The Radbuod study showed it’s effect against a bacteria. We will make no claims unless they can be proven.

The 3 pillars of WHM

For athletes the WHM fundamentals program can have profound effects. However like all training methodology it will work brilliantly for some and will have a negilgable effect on others. Training itself has a negilgable effect on some people who do not adapt to training whatever they do. Closely linked to the WHM the hypoxic effect of altitude training has little effect on some athletes. We are all different. You have to find what works for you. BUT the only way to find out is to try something new. The three obvious effect outlined above will nearly always bring benefit.

Subscribe to the Free WHM mini class

1. The WHM Breathing practice

WHM 70% of the benefit is found in the breathing practice. Read these safety notes before you undertake these exercises. Some people should not undertake these activities. I personally do these activities every day sometimes evening and morning. I love the effect. See the science for why.

2. The Cold exposure

For some people they are put off the WHM because they can’t face the thought of going into the cold. It’s a mindset The cold for most is just cold. This is just a different experience from hot. It feels different. It’s not really unplesant, just different. Our modern world has seperated us from our hundred thousand years of evolution. We are well suited to cold and hot. Humans are brilliant through a whole range of temperatures which is why we are so successful as a species.

Time to switch on your brown fat cells and all the benefits cold exposure can bring.

3. The Focus

As someone who has practiced meditation for 30 years I love this. The WHM has improved my practice. Again the science shows why. Meditation is something religions have practice for thousands of year. I once discussed this with the Bishop of Aylesbury while on a leadership confernece is the South of France. Budhist meditation had become very popular, he explained the Christian meditation practices which ahd lost their following but which did the same thing. Still your mind. Let it recover. This has been around for hundred of thousands of years. Sit. Stare into a fire like a cave dweller. Sit. Watch the ocean. Sit Watch birds soaring on a thermal. WHM encourages you to focus during the breathing practice and when in the ice bath (try thinking about work in an ice bath!).

Transfer this to training and in particular racing. Brilliant for swimming especially open water swimming OWS.

Wim Hof Method Fundamentals Workshops For Athletes.

These workshops take participants throuh the fundamentals of the Wim Hof Method. We don’t have Wim as an instructor but we do have Certified Wim Hof Method Level 1 instructor Dave Bradley. The workshop will have the three elements of the WHM, breathing, cold and focus. In addition there will be links to your swim, bike and run training and racing to help you incorporate your WHM practice into your Tri-Sports Adventures.

Workshops may focus on swim, bike or run with some training to accompany the programme. Our venues are in the hills so we guarantee beautiful surroundings and proper UK weather.

Wim Hof Method Fundamentals as an integral part of a traithlon training camp

Our triathlon training camps are held at two venues. They are weekend adventures with the opportunity to bike and run at all times. Swimming will take place during the warm water months. A key component of the camps is he WHM fundamentals workshop. During which you will learn the breathing method, experience cold, and sharpen your focus. Camps will also cover the research behind WHM and link all this to swim, bike and run performance.

Shaley Dene Camps in Yorkshire

Wayside Camps in English Lake District

Alpine Camps

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