Tips&TricksResilience training in Russian preschools: Kids acclimate to frigid temperatures for boosted health

Resilience training in Russian preschools: Kids acclimate to frigid temperatures for boosted health

Hardening of children in Russia
Hardening of children in Russia
Images source: © X | djuric_zlatko
8:03 AM EST, February 2, 2024

In Russian preschools, children not only learn and play but they are also exposed to practices aimed at boosting their immune systems. Toddlers are taken outside, dressed only in their underwear, even in the cold, and showered with chilly water.

Children's acclimation to cold in Russia

This routine may be shocking to many, but in Russia, it's more of a norm and always happens with parental approval. From an early age, children are gradually accustomed to low temperatures, prepping them to cope better with such conditions in the future. Consequently, they fall ill less often, aren't susceptible to frostbite, and display greater eagerness to play outdoors.

A video from a preschool in Krasnoyarsk shows children in their underwear, patiently forming a line, awaiting their turn to be doused with water. This spectacle might alarm many parents. In the background, the sizeable snowdrifts imply harsh temperatures. Yet, once the bucket empties, the toddlers return to preschool, their faces all smiles. Despite the frigid conditions, the kids seem to immensely enjoy the procedure. There are no tears; instead, anticipation for the chilly bath is palpable. This hardening regime is commonplace in most towns in the region.

Parents' opinions

In Krasnoyarsk, such practices are used in preschools to build resilience in children from an early age. Sometimes, the outside temperature drops below -4 degrees Fahrenheit. Participation, although not compulsory, is consented to by a majority of the parents. The children undergo a range of procedures designed to acclimate them to extreme temperatures. Additionally, they partake in rigorous physical exercises and frequent the sauna to train their bodies to adapt to varying conditions.

Such conditioning undoubtedly contributes to healthier children. They fall ill less frequently during the autumn-winter phase, as their immune system has adjusted adequately in a controlled environment. During a child's conditioning phase, a proper diet and proper rest also weigh heavily in importance. Although it isn't necessary to commence with winter swimming, letting your child play outside, even in the snow, isn't just fun but an excellent means of building physical resilience. Initially, this process may be daunting, but gradually, frolicking in the water can turn into an engaging and beneficial activity.

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