Just as temps are starting to warm up in Chicago, we are getting more and more addicted to freezing ourselves.
As you may have seen on the blog and our Instagram, Christina and I have been loving cryotherapy at The CryoBar lately. But we realize we haven’t really given you the full scoop on what it is, what it does, and why we can’t get enough. Until now.
What is Cryotherapy?
Cryotherapy is simply exposing yourself to e x t r e m e cold for a short period of time. The method you’ve seen us use is via a cryochamber, a tank filled with liquid nitrogen-cooled air, that dips to as low as -130°C (-266°F).
I’ll just let that sink in.
A more commonplace (but less efficient and slightly warmer) method is by taking an ice bath [athletes - remember those days?]. While the cryochamber exposure is limited to 2-3 minutes, ice baths can take up to an hour to be effective. No thanks! We’d like to get it over with asap if we can.
What are the benefits?
Put simply, exposure to cold temps speeds up the healing process by constricting blood vessels and reducing blood flow to the painful area. As a result, pain, swelling and inflammation decrease. But cryotherapy does oh so much more…
Allows more intense & higher volume training
Improves muscle strength and joint function
Accelerates muscle recovery
Increases blood circulation
Reduced Pain and Inflammation, specifically due to:
Fibromyalgia, Chronic Pain Syndrome
Osteo- and Rheumatoid Arthritis
Relief from depression & anxiety
Releases harmful toxins in the body
Boosts immune system functions (limits cold & flu)
Increases lymphatic draining
On the Surface
Boosts collagen production for tighter, younger skin & stronger hair and nails
Reduces the appearance of cellulite
Increases metabolism, fat-burning & weight-loss [after treatment, your body will burn between 500-800 calories as it works to regulate its normal skin temp]
Decreases overall swelling
Reduces the appearance of pores & fine lines
Improves skin blemishes & scars
What can I expect my first time?
The therapy results in the lowering of your skin surface temp by 30-50 degrees. So yeah, you’re gonna feel cold. But speaking as someone who is seriously cold intolerant, the post-cryo chill is...tolerable. Right as you step out of the chamber, you’ll experience a “pins and needles” sensation, which quickly goes away. Throughout the day, I occasionally will get a C H I L L that shakes my whole body for a second...that’s how I know it’s working :)
The best part: the endorphin high. I skip out the door with an energy and alertness that I relate to that feeling you get after a great long run outside. According to The Cryobar, “the energized effects from each session typically last six to eight hours post treatment. The more treatments you do in close succession, the longer the endorphin high lasts.” Well, that’s chill.
Starving for more hours of quality sleep? If you’ve tried all of our tips and tricks in this blog post with no success, it might be time to consider cryotherapy. While you’ll surely feel more energetic immediately after freezing, many report that they sleep much more soundly that night.
Why we love it
No, seriously. Cryotherapy has quickly become the main method of recovery after a week of tough workouts. It allows us to push past our limits (specifically at Strive Village and solidcore) and still feel physically capable of getting in a lighter workout the next day.
xx, J & C