Foreign Affairs
Tokyo: Japanese plunge into ice cold baths for a happy and healthy new year

Hundreds of participants showed unprecedented courage when stepping into frozen water to detox and purify themselves in the hope of a healthy new year.

People of all ages – young and old – took part in the annual ritual ‘Shinto’ at the temple in Tokyo.

After a warming up exercise to loosen their muscles, the participants braved the glacial waters containing ice blocks.

The Shinto ritual, has been performed for 65 years on the second Sunday of January where participants descend into frozen water baths containing ice.

Many others go and watch the swimmers who pluck up the courage to perform this ritual every year.

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