T Nation

Cryotherapy: Good or Bad?

Just read over latest “Question of strength” (the one where everyone is arguing about the crossfit comments). Poliquin talked about cryotherapy being ineffective.

However, it seems that every physical therapist perscribes this following exercises, especially following rehab. To be honest, i really can’t tell if it makes a difference either. I can somewhat understand where Poliquin said it may actually cause more damage (a hot topic in spinal cord injury). Just curious to what you guys think.

Speaking from my own experience, I bought a few cryocups and tried cryo therapy for a while when I first started using EDT. I can’t really say it did anything for me. It didn’t seem to reduce soreness or improve recovery time.

Eventually, I just stopped using it as the 10-15 minutes of discomfort from rubbing ice on my muscles after a workout just wasn’t worth it.

Wouldn’t it be better to dip into an ice bath for 5-10 minutes?

I would think that and SMR techniques would be plenty to help reduce soreness…

Poliquin. Interesting guy. Very knowledgable. And certainly not affraid to share his ideas. But some of the stuff he says and recommends just baffles me. I remember last summer I was doing an upper arm specialization program I had written. @ the end of each trainin session I would take contrast showers for about 20 mins. and do some stretches on the upper arms. An hour later I would place ice on my bis’ & tris’ for about 20 mins. several times a day. I did this for about 4 weeks. Did it help? I don’t know for sure.

How were my gains? Very impressive. No I didn’t take measurements and I have no before and after photos. I measured my gains from DOMS, visible gains , strength gains & decreased time off between training sessions. Now I can’t tell you this is all because of the ice?

My nutrition was solid, general stress was low , got lots of solid quality sleep etc… Give it a shot. Make your own decision based on your results. Like Poliquin said in his article. Do what works for you. Not what others are doing necessarily. Remember the story about the lemmings?.. think about it

And if you want to make it a point to stay clear of aneurysms,it’s probably best to try not jumping into a cold shower when you’re heated up directly after a workout.