The use of cold therapy dates back to the ancient Greeks. Cold drinks, baths and natural snow ice were used as the first forms of cold therapy before the introduction of artificial ice in 1755. Since the 1940s cold has been used for the treatment of acute and sub-acute injuries. Ice constricts blood vessels and gets rid of waste products from damaged tissues. It also reduces inflammation and swelling and significantly aids the reduction of local metabolism and pain.
Today all those involved in sport know that recovery time must be minimised and 21st century sport requires more sophisticated approaches to enable optimum recovery. Cryotherapy has gained a place in many sports as a standard workout recovery protocol.
The Cryotherapy Spa has the optimum combination of turbulence, thermostatically controlled temperature (1-4 deg Celsius), salinity and pressure (due to the depth of the water).
Turbulence causes the body to loose heat through convection and conduction which results in an immediate drop in the temperature of the tissues. Secondly the massage effect causes a dispersal of fluids and stimulates the muscle which is beneficial for injuries such as a quadriceps contusion. The cold temperature decreases pain and muscle spasm. This reduces tissue metabolism, blood flow, inflammation, oedema and connective tissue extensibility.
The depth of the cryotherapy spa exerts significant pressure on the tissues which in turn also aids the dispersal of any accumulated fluids. And finally the salinity of the water has a great drawing effect thereby influencing the dispersal of fluids accumulated around the injury.