/ Hot aches - do you get tougher or weaker?

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Daniel Heath - on 13 Dec 2012
If you expose your hands to the cold on a regular basis do you make them tougher or more susceptible to the cold in the future?

GridNorth - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath: Definitely tougher. Many years ago I was a telephone engineer and had to climb poles in all sorts of weather. At that time I seemd to be less susceptable to the cold in general and not just my hands. After I had worked in an office for a few years there was a noticable difference.
Robert Durran - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:
> If you expose your hands to the cold on a regular basis do you make them tougher or more susceptible to the cold in the future?

Didn't Hermann Buhl used to wander around in winter with a snowball in each hand to get tougher?

remus - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath: I would say tougher.

I can't remember the source, but apparently fishermen have a noticeably improved resistance to frostbite. The theory goes that because their hands are perpetually cold, their bodies limit the natural reaction to shut of the blood supply when their hands start getting cold, thus their hands stay warm for longer.
John Mcshea - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to GridNorth:
Perhaps I'm an anomaly but I work in an unheated workshop all year round, admittedly with a duvet jacket on, but with bare hands. When I go climbing in the winter however I'm often rocking backwards and forwards with my hands under my armpits whimpering with pain as my friends seem to have little or no problem. I despise the hot aches, they have bought me both tears and vomiting, it is true though that when I have had them in a day my fingers feel very different afterwards and the hot aches don't come back.

Jb.
999thAndy on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:
Don't overdo the toughening though. A mate of mine got frost nip whilst skiing and finds he gets the hotaches more frequently than before.
unclesamsauntibess - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath: I think one develops an increased tolerance level due to increased exposure (no pun) to cold. On cold days I think if you do get very cold hands early in the day and then warm them back up the system seems to get a "kick start" as it were and you can stay warmer for longer. Best done on the walk in under some control.
nufkin - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

Seems to me there's scope for proper research into this - volunteers, control groups, varied exposure, blood sample, thermal imaging, the works (rather than just the subjects' perception of hot-ache intensity).


Anyone know any Year 10 students who could do it?
mick.h on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to unclesamsauntibess:

Agreed - I've also found that once you've gone through one bout of agony, your resistance seems much higher, for the rest of that day only.

I also found that screaming obscenities seemed to mitigate the pain, best done in remote/deserted locations.
Trangia - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

Definitely tougher. I also find that it's improved as I have aged, I used to go through agony when I was younger, but it's rarely a probem now. I do however find that when rock climbing in extreme cold, I loose all feeling in my hands which is disconcerting!! :)
Daniel Heath - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

Mostly encouraging replies there.

Also a few of you have said that one bunch of pain early in the day makes the rest of the day less painful. Worth bearing in mind if I manage to get on the grit this winter.
Gav M - on 13 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

The trick is never to get hotaches in the first place. Use Dachstein mitts and a belay jacket when stationary. This keeps the core warm. Counterintuitive as it may seem, a warm core is the key to keeping the extremities warm.
Bobling - on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

Sorry off slightly off topic - can anyone find that video of someone having a serious case of these whilst his partner takes the p*ss? The partner feigns sympathy whilst making comic faces...
Brodie - on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to Bobling: its called "hot aches" I think. Search it on youtube.
Brodie - on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to Bobling: Aye its the first result on youtube for "hot aches"
remus - on 14 Dec 2012
Bobling - on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

*facepalm*
nigel pearson - on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:
learning a good 'belay dance' is the key to keep your core warm whilst belaying. Thus the body does not withdraw the heat from your hands and no hot aches.
The New NickB - on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to Daniel Heath:

I used to not suffer with my hands, just wore thickies for most of my winter climbing with little discomfort. About 5 years ago I got caught out lightly in the Alps and got bad frost nip which took a good few weeks for my fingers to fully get the feeling back. Since then I have suffered with cold hands much more.
Fraser on 14 Dec 2012
In reply to remus:
> (In reply to Daniel Heath) I would say tougher.
>
> I can't remember the source, but apparently fishermen have a noticeably improved resistance to frostbite.

I think that one was from Captain Birdseye.

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