Warming up and cooling down are natural cycles. The earth warms up in spring, some seeds won’t germinate below certain temperatures, ensuring that the plants don’t pop up, just to be killed off by frost. (Except when we plant them ourselves too late in the year!)
In the same way, many natural cycles are triggered by falling temperatures. I see these cycles on my allotment in Trumpington, Cambridge. The queen bee slows down in her egg laying, many plants stop flowering, and perhaps to humans some others such as Ivy start! For us cooling down (in a physical sense needs to happen at not too fast a rate. Overzealous use of cold can change someone from hyperthermia to hypothermia in a surprisingly short time.
Those in many sports know all about this, donning extra layers as soon as they finish running etc. if the weather is cold or cyclists stuffing newspapers inside their jerseys before beginning a fast descent after sweating their way up to the top of a pass.
I mentioned stretching as well in my previous post and when I attended circus skills classes on a regular basis, stretching was always done after classes. This stretching is designed to reduce injuries and maintain function rather than the more vigorous stretching used to increase flexibility. This too was an important part of my training in circus skills.
Sometimes cooling down is something we need to do psychologically too! How often do you hear someone talking about taking the heat out of a situation?
In Aromatherapy and massage, there are many oils that are cooling in nature. – Most Citrus oils, Chamomile both Roman and German, Eucalyptus Citriadora, Geranium, Lavender, Melissa, Neroli, Palmarosa, Peppermint and many others. These oils are useful both for those who have difficulty controlling their temper but also those who tend to bottle up anger or turn it in on themselves.
Whether it be physical, spiritual or psychological, spend some time thinking about how you can both warm up and cool down in a way that mimics nature’s natural rhythms.