Hello Balanced Ballerinas! Today we are exploring a method that I’ve been fascinated with for a long time – the Wim Hof method.
If you’re a long time listener of the podcast, it’s no surprise that I’m kind of into all things human optimisation. And amongst all the podcasts I listen to, documentaries I watch and books I read, a name keeps popping up… Wim Hof.
The best way to describe Wim is that he’s a dutch extreme athlete now in his 60’s. He’s a big ball of love, drinks beer and his work was inspired by the tragic suicide of his first wife.
Some of the crazy things he’s accomplished include setting the Guinness World Record for swimming under ice and climbing Mt Everest and Mt Kilimanjaro wearing only shorts and shoes. He’s proven time and time again to be able to resist the cold, suppress the immune system and most importantly teach people to do the same.
All this craziness aside, the Wim Hof method was not developed so people can also do these insane adventures. No, it simply focuses on improving the quality of ones life through its three pillars; breath work, cold therapy and meditation.
I’ve dabbled in methods that focus on each of these pillars individually, but what I like about the Wim Hof method is that it covers all three. Now what has this got to do with dancers or our ballet practice?
Well, if you’ve ever been to one of my ballet classes you’ll know what focussing on breath is a large focus of class. I notice when people aren’t breathing, I notice when the breath doesn’t match the movement and I also notice when a student is in flow, mastering their breath.
On top of all this, I also have a lot of clients (young and adult) that suffer from serious mental illness or more mild anxiety and depression. Whilst ballet is a fantastic moving meditation, sometimes they need a little extra direction. Oftentimes I will incorporate some breath work into a private lesson or prescribe a cold shower (with legs up the wall) before bed…
These simple things work. And if I can help everyone find a little more balance and introduce you to a method that I’m personally experimenting with myself, then it might just change your life.
So today we have Queensland’s highest certified Wim Hof instructor Eden Lee on the podcast. Eden is the perfect person to talk about this method for the Balanced Ballerinas podcast because prior to being a pilates and Wim Hof instructor Eden was a professional ballet dancer and counts the likes of Steven McRae (Principal Artist with Royal Ballet) amongst his friends and clients.
So amongst all the cold therapy and breathing chat, you’ll enjoy an insight into Eden’s career and general ballerina chat that might make these concepts more digestible if this stuff is way out of your comfort zone!
Anyway back to Eden…
Eden has spent the majority of his life studying and refining his knowledge of many health and physical wellness modalities. He is an absolute wealth of knowledge and epitome of health!
Eden trains clients of all ages, abilities and talents on the Gold Coast at his studio Pilates Central in Bundall. His body conditioning approach endeavours to meet the individuals needs on the day and over time, based on the Pilates technique, the latest in scientific research and the decades of experience he has.
I really enjoyed this conversation and I have huge respect for Eden and his pursuit of mental clarity and calmness whilst improving or eliminating physical pain. You can tell he just loves his work and anyone who has a passion for what they do is someone I want to share with the Balanced Ballerinas community.
Grit & Grace,