Hardening is a series of preventive measures whose task is to improve the body’s resistance to unfavorable external factors. Health procedures allow the body to increase its level of adaptation to various environmental conditions. At the same time, a hardened organism, under conditions of temperature fluctuations, maintains it at an optimal level in the internal organs, and within rather narrow limits.
So, in case of a sharp increase or decrease in the ambient temperature, the body of a tempered person will sharply react by expanding or narrowing blood vessels to the threat of severe overheating or cooling, and will limit or increase heat transfer. An uncleaned organism is simply not capable of responding so quickly.
Hardening increases the endurance of the whole organism, immunity, resistance to diseases, strengthens the rather vulnerable nervous system.
That is why this is one of the best ways to keep your health strong.
Types of hardening
Hardening of the body can be divided into several types, depending on the procedures:
- Aerotherapy – hardening air. This type of hardening includes air baths and long walks in the fresh air. Fresh air hardens the body by cooling the skin receptors and nerve endings of the mucous membranes and thereby improves the body’s thermoregulation. Hardening with air is useful for the psycho-emotional state of a person, enhancing immunity, saturating the body with oxygen, and thereby helps normalize the work of most organs and body systems.
The system is phased, begins with hardening indoors at a temperature range of 15 – 16 ° C with a time interval of 3-5 minutes. After 4-5 days, you can begin a ten-minute hardening effect on the skin in the open air, but at t not less than 20 – 22 ° C. In the future, the residence time in the open air gradually increases. This method is optimal for untrained people.
Hardening with cold air masses (from 4 to 13 ° C) is permissible to apply only to trained, well-seasoned people. Begin exposure with a couple of minutes and gradually this time is adjusted to 10 minutes, but no more.
Hardening with air is the easiest and most affordable method of hardening. You need to spend more time outdoors, regardless of the weather and time of year. It is necessary to try to spend more time walking in parks, woods, near reservoirs, since in summer the air in such places is saturated with beneficial active substances that are secreted by plants. In winter, walks in forests and parks are also very important, since winter air is practically free of germs, is more saturated with oxygen, and has a healing effect on the entire body.
Sleep in the open air is a passive tempering technique. The main rule is the absence of drafts. Day and night sleep can be arranged in the bedroom with open windows, on the balcony or loggia, on the veranda. Many are interested in, is it possible to sleep on the street? If it is summertime, there is an equipped place, protected from wind and precipitation – then it is possible. But in the offseason, and especially winter, it is better not to do such extreme actions, because, in a dream, the thermoregulation of a person is imperfect, the body cools down very quickly. And to sleep in a quilted jacket and felt boots is very uncomfortable, and there will absolutely not be any benefit from such a dream.
Fresh, constantly circulating air is in itself an excellent therapeutic and prophylactic factor. All germs and viruses floating in the air are neutralized, and the blood is saturated with oxygen. The result is a fresh and rested appearance after sleep, strong immunity, and excellent health.
- Heliotherapy – hardening by the sun, the effect on the body by sunlight and heat. Hardening by the sun increases the stability of the nervous system, accelerates the body’s metabolic processes, increases the body’s resistance, improves blood circulation, improves the functioning of the muscular system, has a tonic effect on almost all body functions. Sunburst is a fairly aggressive natural factor that can lead to burns and heat or sunstroke. It is therefore very important: the time of the procedure (morning between 9-11 hours or evening between 17-19 hours) and the duration of exposure (start from 3-4 minutes and bring to 1 hour, gradually adding a few minutes). Protect the head and cornea of the eye from direct sunlight. The last meal before tanning should be no less than an hour and a half before going out in the sun. When tanning, the sun should “look” at your feet, you should not stand or sit, it is better to lie down.
Hardening by the sun can not only be beneficial but also cause very great harm, therefore, this type of hardening should be treated very responsibly and abide by all the rules of hardening by the sun. In no case should burns, overheating, and heat shocks be allowed? Improper hardening by the sun can lead to serious illnesses. Hardening by the sun should occur gradually and take into account age, human health, climatic conditions, and other factors.
- Walking barefoot. This type of hardening is useful for both children and adults. On the feet of a person, there is a large number of biologically active points, which, when walking barefoot, are stimulated and help to normalize the work of many organs and body systems. Walking barefoot increases the body’s resistance to colds, improves immunity. This type of hardening is a good prevention of so many diseases. It is important to keep the balance of walking time: as the outside temperature decreases, the duration of exposure decreases. And only after getting used to the cold (1.5-2 weeks), this time is slowly increased. It is better to walk in a particular place, for example, on the ground with grass. Walking barefoot is common in Western countries, where barefoot walking is officially authorized by the authorities. We also use a softer version of barefooting – walking without shoes in nature.
- Hardening water. Hardening with water is a very useful procedure for the human body. During water hardening, blood circulation in the body occurs more intensively, bringing additional oxygen and nutrients to the organs and systems of the body. It is best to start water quenching in the morning, after charging. The temperature of the water begins with a natural skin temperature of 37 ° C, then gradually decreases by 1-2 degrees every day. For each water method, there is a temperature limit.
Hardening water can be divided into several types:
Rubdown. Rubbing is the most gentle and gentle water that is hardening procedures. Rubbing can be applied from an early age. Rubbing can be done with a sponge, hand, or towel moistened with water. First, wipe the upper body, then rub it with a dry towel, and then wipe the lower part of the body and rub it with a dry towel. The duration of exposure is about 5 minutes.
Rubbing with snow. Perform this invigorating and beneficial procedure is allowed only to completely healthy people after a preliminary long quenching with cold water. Perfect weather: no wind and temperature around 0 ° С. Rubbing is carried out from the periphery (hands and feet) to the center. Do not wipe the head and ears, but the face is necessary. It is enough to go through the body 1-2 times, the procedure duration: 1-2 minutes.
The therapeutic effect of rubbing snow: stimulates the body’s defenses, especially in the fight against colds.
Douche. Pouring is more effective in influencing the procedure than rubbing. Pouring can be common, that is, the whole body and local – pouring on the legs. After the douching procedure, rub the body with a dry towel. Begin with water around + 30 ° С, gradually decrease to t + 15 ° С and lower. After the procedure, rubbing the skin surface with a towel until hyperemia is performed.
Shower. Hardening in a shower is an even more effective hardening procedure than rubbing and pouring. There are two options for hardening a shower; this is a cool (cold) shower and a contrast shower. Begin with t +30 – 32 ° C and lasting about a minute. Gradually reduce t to + 15 ° С and increase the procedure time to 2-3 minutes. If the body takes on a hardening shower, switch to temperature contrast, alternating water 35 – 40 ° C with water 13 – 20 ° C 2 -3 times for three minutes.
Medical bathing and winter swimming. This type of water hardening is becoming more and more popular every year. Medical bathing and winter swimming perfectly influences all organs and systems of the human body, the work of the heart, lungs improves, the system of thermoregulation improves. This type of hardening implies the strictest observance of all the rules for this type. To begin winter swimming is necessary after consultation with the doctor.
Swimming in the ice-hole is the strongest effect available, available only for the most seasoned people. This powerful healing technique is attributed to the ancient methods of prevention and treatment of many diseases. Indeed, before people were healthier and body and soul, and the very swimming in the hole was not such a wonder as it is now. On the contrary, many people performed this health-giving ritual, from young to old.
The medical history of this method, like hardening, is relatively young and dates back to the end of the 1800s. Today, traditionally, every Orthodox person aspires to experience these unique sensations on the great day of the Baptism of the Lord.
From a medical point of view, swimming in the hole is acute stress with short-term exposure. There is a so-called “vascular dance” and the redistribution of blood. First, the vessels lying on the surface narrow and give their blood “for the salvation” of the internal organs. Then this very blood, the internal organs give back, and the vessels again expand rapidly. A huge amount of hormones is released into the blood: adrenaline and endorphins. There is a general stimulation of the body, all systems and organs begin to work more intensively and correctly. Activated protective function, produced persistent insensitivity to the effects of disease agents. Emotionally, a person feels indescribably light and happy. Many say that having experienced a swim in the hole, they started a new life! Bathing in the ice hole relieves pain in the shoulders, back, joints, relieves insomnia, improves central and peripheral blood circulation, and improves cold resistance.
The path to hardening in the hole is long. A person must overcome all the above methods of hardening, then switch to dousing with icy water, and only then get acquainted with the hole. It is not necessary to deal with this type of water exposure alone and alone, control is required from the professional “walrus”.
Naturally, this procedure requires a state of complete health and psychological readiness. The rules of immersion in the hole – a gradual dipping with a stay in the water for a minimum of time (starting with a few seconds and carefully brought to a few minutes). After dipping it is very important to wipe dry, dress warmly (but not hot), and move actively. A cup of herbal tea will further emphasize the beauty of this procedure!
- Begin tempering procedures when a person is completely healthy. Children and people suffering from various diseases can begin hardening with gentle procedures and only after consulting a doctor
2. It is necessary to observe the principle of gradualness. This applies to both the temperature regime and the temporal framework of tempering procedures. When water is hardened, procedures should be started from room temperature water, gradually lowering it by 1-2 degrees. When hardening by the sun, it is also necessary to observe the principle of gradualness and begin to stay in the sun for a few minutes, gradually increasing the time spent in the sun.
3. It is also very important to conduct tempering procedures regularly, without large intervals, in any weather and season. If it still happens that you interrupted the hardening for a long time, then it should be renewed with more gentle procedures.
4. Combine hardening with exercise. This will greatly increase the effectiveness of tempering procedures and will have a beneficial effect on the entire body.
5. Hardening should bring vigor and joy. If you feel unwell after tempering procedures, you should stop tempering and consult a doctor.
6. When hardening, it is necessary to take into account the individual characteristics of a person, health status, season, natural and climatic conditions, and so on.
7. Performing tempering procedures, it is necessary to conduct self-checking. Evaluate general health, pulse, blood pressure, appetite, and other indicators depending on the individual characteristics of the organism.
8. Remember that hardening is one of the components of a healthy lifestyle. Remember to pay attention to your diet and other aspects of your life.