It is difficult to deny the attraction that most of use have towards water. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that we, as humans, are composed primarily of it. It only seems natural then that we seek it out in one variation or another. From a refreshing afternoon dip in a cool pool on a hot day to a steamy hot shower after a vigorous workout, water is a soother, a healer to us.
Here is one more way it can help you (and it is free!): hydrotherapy or the use of water to relieve discomfort and promote physical well-being. This ancient form of therapy may aid you to improve your circulation simply by switching from hot to cold - in the shower that is.
How and Why to Use Hydrotherapy in Your Shower for Poor CirculationEach time you shower you have an opportunity to improve your circulation. I admit, this is not for sissies, though. But, be brave! Here is how to do it:
Hydrotherapy technique: Concentrating on the affected area you feel needs better circulation (such as your legs for example), allow the hot water to directly hit the area for 30 seconds to a full minute. Then, the hard part. Now, turn to cold water, or as cold as you can stand, and allow the cold water to hit directly on the area for 30 seconds to a full minute. Then, switch back again to hot water. Move back and forth between the two temperatures for a few cycles.
Why it helps: The hot water forces the blood to the legs, and the cold water sends the blood rushing back to the internal organs. So, why is this helpful exactly? This action improves nutrient rich oxygen to be better delivered all around your body. Your circulation is increased just by the action of your blood being forced swiftly throughout your body. When the cold water hits, you shiver, but what is happening is that your blood is flushing out your skin and leaving it oxygenated. Then, hitting the hot shower again creates a blood rush from your internal organs, creating a cycle of great movement or those big vital circles I talked about a few posts ago.
Caution: Do not begin this therapy with very hot or very cold water. Build up to that. Gradually increase the temperature difference between the hot and cold water over a period of a few weeks so that it is not too much of a shock to your system.
Look at these other health benefits: This single action can dramatically improve your circulation over time. But, here are some other benefits of hydrotherapy, especially if you use this for a whole body approach - that is showering with the hot and cold cycles hitting your entire body:
- Increases the elimination of waste, thus assisting detoxification through the lymph system
- Increases the metabolic rate and digestion activity
- Improves skin and muscle tone
- Boosts the immune system
- Stimulates the blood supply to internal organs
photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/asianu/8357414140/">asim chowdhury</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>