FIGHTERS are increasingly using cryotherapy as part of their training camps. “It’s really good for preventative [treatment], while they’re training. You don’t just have to wait for an injury to use a chamber, you can use it throughout,” explains Ruth Hyde, who runs Cryojuvenate UK in Kent. Their services are used by a wide variety of boxers, from amateurs to seasoned professionals, including Ted Cheeseman, who triumphed in a thrilling fight against Carson Jones at the O2 earlier this month.
Cryotherapy for an athlete helps to bring down inflammation, ease pain and enhance recovery. It doesn’t have to be used for injuries, it can help a tired body recover from hard training.
“We combine it with localised cryotherapy which targets specific areas and then we do deep tissue massage afterwards. Not every time but we’ve tied it all together so we offer packages. Because some people come quite a way to travel to us we wanted to make it a more worthwhile experience for them,” Ruth said.
“Some of our athletes come down from London two or three times a week. They’ll have one chamber, go off and have a cup of tea, and then they’ll have another one. They’ll do two in a day. It’s really helped some of them.”
Cryojuvenate has a whole body chamber, which you can go into for three minutes for a session. “Never more than three minutes. But if they want to take a break for an hour, come back and go in again, they can do that,” Ruth said. “It averages about minus 92 degrees, which believe me it’s plenty cold enough. The benefit of the electric chamber that we’ve got is it is whole body, your whole body is submerged, so you’re not losing heat out of your head.”
The chamber was designed to find a cure for arthritis and back pain. Subsequent studies discovered further benefits. “Your heart starts pumping blood round the body faster, so it gets to places it wouldn’t normally get to and if you’ve got an inflammation, it’ll help to reduce the inflammation, it reduces pain and speeds up recovery. We’ve found with a lot of people it helps them with sleep. You’re burning calories as well when you’re there,” Ruth said.