Paul Newman knew the importance of keeping a cool hand at the poker table. According to a recent study, it may also be an asset at the gym.
Stanford’s Dr. Stacy T. Sims asserts that keeping our hands cool during workouts increases our endurance, which can in turn yield greater benefits across the board. Her team of researchers observed two dozen women who exercised on treadmills three times a week over the course of three months. All of the women worked out while holding a palm-cooling device in their hands. Half of the women had devices that were set to maintain an internal temperature of 61 degrees, while the rest were set at 98.6 degrees.
Participants who used the cooler device completed their 1.5 mile walk an average of five minutes faster, slimmed their waistlines by an average of three inches, raised their exercising heart rate and lowered their resting blood pressure. The other group experienced far less dramatic results, with several participants even dropping out of the study.
Dr. Sims elaborates on the wonders of keeping your hands cool, telling NPR, “It works to reduce the sensation of being overly hot and sweaty. The idea is to allow those people to overcome the initial barriers that heat intolerance produces. It gives them positive affirmation to keep going.”
The Stanford study used a hand cooling device made by Avacore Technologies. While it did help many participants achieve great results, the $2,995 (plus shipping!) price tag may be a bit steep for most people looking to enhance their workouts. Interested in a cheaper alternative?
“Freeze a bottle of water and take it with you so you have it in your hand as you exercise,” Sims tells WebMD. “You can drink cold water as it is melting.”
So there you have it, a pumped-up workout may be as easy as carrying a frozen bottle of Dasani! But don’t take our word for it – just listen to seven-time Mr. Olympia Arnold Schwarzenegger extoll the virtues of keeping cool.