The coolest new fitness trend is exercising in the cold, but does it actually work?

Tuesday 22nd May 2018 - Press Association , Irish Examiner View Article Here

As any regular gym-goer knows, getting hot and sweaty is part and parcel of a good workout. In fact, most of us are of the opinion that the hotter, the better, as it shows that you’re really pushing your body to the limit.

Well, a new boutique fitness studio in New York is turning this conventional wisdom on its head and is holding classes in the cold.

Brrrn has three classes. The first is a yoga-inspired mobility and strength series in 15 degrees Celsius, the second a core and cardio slide board series in 13 degrees, and the third a battle rope hit series in a chilly 7 degrees.

With these temperatures, it’s clear that you won’t be turning up in short shorts and a sports bra. But what is the point of exercising in such cold climes, and what effect does it have on your body?

One thing you can definitely credit Brrrn for is a love of science – the studio has looked into these questions in great detail.

It claims that exercising in colder temperatures will burn more calories and fat, meaning that you take longer to fatigue and help you perform your best. There is definitely some logic in this – when it’s cold, your metabolic rate increases. This means that your body is working harder and can therefore burn more calories.

The people behind Brrrn argue that if you’re exercising in a cold room, your body has to work doubly hard to keep it at the optimum temperature, whereas if you were in a hot room this would naturally happen.

On their website it says: “Instead, your body would have to rely on its own inner heat, aka, your metabolism – the sum of your trillions of cells working together — to keep you heated.”

Research published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise found that marathon runners completed the distance quicker in cooler temperatures (times went down from 25 degrees C to 5 degrees), suggesting that performance can be improved by the cold.

Not only this, but research suggests that we are happier in the cold – around 13 degrees 

So you could burn more calories, perform better and be in a better mood? We don’t know about you, but this whole exercising in the cold thing sounds increasingly appealing…


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