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What is Cryotherapy?

Cryotherapy means the use of extreme cold as a treatment.The application involves the use of super-chilled air in which the patient is completely immersed for a period of a few minutes. The technology has been in use for over 30 years in Japan and Europe. Cryotherapy is provided by medical services in various European countries for the treatment of osteoarthritis and other ailments.

What is Whole Body Cryotherapy?

Whole Body Cryotherapy involves the entire body being placed in a chamber, filled with liquid nitrogen gas. Unlike other cryotherapy systems where the head remains outside the gas, Whole Body Cryotherapy systems enable a more effective application and greater benefits. One benefit is that the optimum treatment temperature of minus 135 degrees centigrade can be achieved and maintained, while in a completely safe environment where gas alone is distributed around the chamber.

What are the benefits of Whole Body Cryotherapy?

Various research studies have been undertaken into the use of cryotherapy in sports.A number suggest that the application of cryotherapy can reduce inflammation and soreness after a workout, heighten recovery capabilities with a number highlighting improvements in sleep patterns. When a cryotherapy session is completed, the body undergoes rapid vasodilation as the higher internal blood pressure drives the enriched blood back to the peripherals. The body has also released endorphins into the blood, providing a euphoric feeling and mood improvement. Since cryotherapy does not freeze tissue and muscles, the body can immediately return to exercise.

Can’t I get the same benefits from an ice-bath?

There are fundamental differences between Whole Body Cryotherapy and an ice-bath treatment.The ice bath process involves immersing the body in cold water of about 7°C to 15°C for fifteen to twenty minutes. The results is that blood is directed from the body to the extremities. This is a natural reaction to maintain normal temperatures throughout the body. when immersed in an ice bath, the body is subjected to constant penetrating cold, leading to stiffness in muscles and tendons. Whole Body Cryotherapy differs in that the body is exposed to temperatures of up to minus 135°C for a period of 2-3 minutes only.Most user’s experience is that the cold is comfortable as they remain completely dry. The body reacts completely differently, with skin receptors directing the brain that rather then counteracting the extreme cold through sending warmed blood to the peripherals and skin, the body undergoes severe vasoconstriction of blood vessels to keep the body’s core temperature at 37°C. Blood moves from the extremities to protect vital organs. Research has identified that this process enriches the internal organs with hormones, enzymes, oxygen. Users also report a far more pleasurable experience than the wholly unpleasant feeling of immersion in an ice bath.

Why do I need a chamber?

Whole Body Cryotherapy chambers provide the most effective method of applying the treatment to a group of athletes, post workout.The chamber enables the application of a controlled temperature to the participants and in a safe environment that separates the gas pumped into the chamber from the potentially harmful liquid.

Why do we need a liquid nitrogen system?

Whole Body Cryotherapy systems tend to be cooled by either liquid nitrogen or electrical cooling systems. Studies has shown that the optimum effect of cryotherapy occurs between minus 120 and minus 135 degrees centigrade. In order to reach those temperatures, only a liquid nitrogen cooled system is capable of reaching that requirement. Most electrical based systems peak at minus 110 degrees centigrade and while there will be limited benefits, the optimum solution remains a liquid nitrogen based system.

Cryotherapy sauna or chamber?

Cryotherapy saunas have their application areas but in the case of elite performance sports, their use is sub-optimal.The need to achieve temperatures exceeding minus 110 degrees in a completely safe environment, means that a chamber is the best choice. The chamber is large enough to allow athletes to walk around or perform exercises during the treatment, further enhancing the comfort and benefits of the treatment. The design of the chamber also enables a better user experience with a -60ºC pre-chamber, in which athletes spend up to a minute, before entering the main -135ºC chamber for two minutes. All this adds up to make a cryotherapy chamber the obvious solution in elite performance sports.

We don’t have the space for a chamber?

An installed chamber requires a certain amount of space and this may be beyond certain locations. In this case, CryoAction can offer a transportable unit. This self contained unit can be a permanent solution as it can be placed close to a training centre and act as as an extension to the training facilities. Liquid nitrogen can be supplied in the unit’s own tank or for extensive use, a separate large capacity tank be sited close by. The unit can also operate on single phase electricity or its own power generator.