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What is Cryotherapy and Is It Good For Me?

What is Cryotherapy and Is It Good For Me?
By Austin Way, Fitness Director

Cryotherapy sounds like something out of a science fiction movie. Broadly speaking, cryotherapy is any kind of body cooling for therapeutic purposes. The most common type of cryotherapy is whole-body cryotherapy, which involves brief exposures to temperatures below -100 degrees Celsius in a cryotherapy chamber. The chamber fills with very cold air from liquid nitrogen and within seconds, you are reaping the many benefits of the cold air. Most say that it is way easier than an ice bath and we agree! The typical time frame is 1-3 minutes.

How Does It Work?
The chamber uses liquid nitrogen to cool temperatures anywhere from -160 and -220 degrees Fahrenheit. A whole-body cryotherapy session last between 1-3 minutes and clients wear minimum clothing with protective gloves, socks/booties and sometimes a headband to cover the ears. 

The idea comes from the simple observation that immersing the entire body or applying ice to a sore area can provide pain relief for inflamed, injured, or overused muscles. 

Preliminary studies suggest that cryotherapy may offer the following benefits:

Pain Relief and Muscle Healing

Cryotherapy can help with muscle pain, as well as some joint and muscle disorders, such as arthritis. It may also promote faster healing of athletic injuries.

Weight Loss

Cryotherapy can increase metabolism for a short amount of time due to the body’s need to protect itself from cold temperatures—so ultimately, trying to stay warm, and because cryotherapy helps with muscle pain, it could make it easier to get back to a fitness routine following an injury.

Reduce Inflammation 

Cryotherapy can help reduce inflammation in the entire body. Inflammation is one way the immune system fights infection. Sometimes the immune system becomes overly reactive. The result is chronic inflammation, which is linked to health problems, such as cancer, diabetes, depression, dementia, and arthritis. 

Reducing Anxiety and Depression

Research findings that cryotherapy may reduce inflammation suggest that it could treat mental health conditions that are linked to inflammation. 

 

We have guests that crave our cryotherapy and use it multiple times while visiting Cal-a-Vie Health Spa. If you haven’t given cryotherapy a chance, you should take the plunge to enjoy all the awesome benefits! 

 

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