Acclimating Your Body to Cold Water

Body heat loss in cold water, for a non-exercising body, is two to four times greater than the heat loss in cold air at the same temperature. When you exercise in cold water, swimming for example, the heat loss from your skin can be 70 times greater than air of equal temperature.

Yes, you read correctly—70.

One reason the heat loss is so large during cold-water exercise is that your body loses heat due to both conduction and convection. Conductive losses are direct losses from one molecule to another through a liquid, solid or gas. Convective losses depend on how fast water (or air) moves past the body.

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