5 Recovery Therapies For Young Athletes Proven To Work

For many young athletes, it’s preseason time! Looking for recovery therapies to help give you the extra edge? Find out how you can recover faster, avoid injuries, and train harder using local cryotherapy, whole-body cryo, and NormaTec compression therapy.

Why recovery therapies are needed for younger athletes

Playing sports competitively can be so beneficial for adolescents. But for young athletes hoping to be recruited at a college or professional level, it can push them beyond their limits and ultimately lead to injury. This is the case for a lot of athletes – young and old alike – who get overuse injuries while training.

More and more young athletes are getting injured

Sports-related injuries in young athletes are on the rise. High school athletes now account for an estimated 2 million injuries. And overuse injuries — which happen from pushing yourself too hard — are responsible for nearly 1/2 of all sports injuries to high school and middle school athletes. (1)

Did you know?

Studies show that painkillers use can lead to dependence and drug addiction in adolescents with sports-related injuries. New recommendations include recovery therapies such as cryotherapy to reduce pain and inflammation. (2)

Luckily, there are several non-invasive, safe, and drug-free recovery therapies you can use for sports-related injuries. In the following post, we are going to focus on the recovery therapies available at Cold Play Cryo. This includes whole body cryotherapy, local cryotherapy, NormaTec compression therapy, infrared sauna, and NanoVi™. Continue reading to find out how these treatments work and how they can be used to take your athletic training to the next level!

By reducing systemic and local inflammation in muscles and joints, consistent cryotherapy sessions can help boost stamina, mobility, flexibility, and stability in athletes.

Whole-Body & Local Cryotherapy for Athletic Recovery and Performance

There is a reason why countless professional athletes use cryotherapy. It helps boost performance and reduces their pain and recovery time from intense workouts and injuries.

Whole-body and local cryotherapy provides the same benefits as an ice bath does to an athlete—but much more efficiently, safely, effectively, and comfortably.

The full range of athletic benefits of cryotherapy include — (3, 4, 5)

  • reduces inflammation
  • decreases muscle soreness
  • helps get rid of bruising
  •  increases circulation
  •  Repairs cellular damage, which aids in recovery after an injury and helps prevent them altogether.
  •  improve energy levels
  • more focus and mental clarity
  • Better body awareness
  • Improved mood

How it works:

Cryotherapy applies extremely dry air to the skin, which makes for a very superficial, non-penetrating cold sensation; treatments are not painful. Best of all, the temperature of the air vapor in cryotherapy is significantly colder. This makes cryotherapy much more effective at combating inflammation than ice. (6, 7, 8)

Cryotherapy provides an incredible mental edge! Most athletes report “personal bests” when they train after a treatment.

Frequency: If you can, we recommend clients who are young athletes to come in for ten cryotherapy treatments over two weeks. And this is a great way to stay healthy during preseason! This will create a ‘base,’ and then you can come in 2-3x a week once you are in season. We also recommend whole-body cryotherapy daily during the preseason and strict training regimens for athletes who are 16 or older. Local cryotherapy can be performed on adolescents, but as a company policy, we do not generally allow kids in the chamber under 16 years old. However, we do make exceptions. You may be able to receive whole-body cryotherapy if you have a parent present and have been cleared by our staff.

Did you know?

Studies have shown that that local cryotherapy on the head and neck can help treat and prevent concussions. (9, 10)

NormaTec Compression boots and hip sleeve

Slipping into our NormaTec compression boots or hip sleeve is an excellent 20-minute recovery therapy for young athletes. Especially if you are unable to enter the whole-body chamber due to age and size! The full range of athletic benefits of NormaTec Compression therapy include — (11,12,13)

  • Increased blood flow and circulation
  • Decreased muscle recovery time
  • Reduced soreness
  • Reduced muscle tension and inflammation
  • Increased flexibility and range of motion
  • Reduced swelling and water accumulation
  • Improved sleep

With the help of compression, you can recover faster from tougher workouts. A work that previously left you sidelined for a couple of days now is par for the course.

How it works:

NormaTec is a compression therapy that uses pulse massage patterns to boost athletic recovery. For the treatment, your legs or hips are inserted into sleeves. Once turned on, compressed air is inflated and ‘massaged’ and ‘squeezed’ along your limbs. This, in turn, mobilizes fluid and fights inflammation. After your 20 minute session, legs are replenished with fresh blood, which in turn stimulates recovery and optimizes athletic performance. (14,15)

Frequency:

Our NormaTec boots and hip sleeve can be used daily! Aim for at least 20-minute sessions. A lot of clients say it helps with sleep as well, which is why we often recommend coming in for Normatec boots at the end of the training day. Athletes report feeling better after just one session, but more benefits come from consistent therapy sessions. We recommend athletes in season – especially those who are running a lot on their feet – come in 2-3 times per week.

Infrared Sauna

Recover while you catch up on your favorite television show during a 45 minute- hour-long infrared sauna session! Science has long shown that warming up our muscles is excellent for speeding up athletic recovery. Warm baths and cold tubs are old staples for athletic recovery, but far-infrared radiation (FIR) saunas are becoming a popular recovery therapy among athletes. The infrared sauna at our Greenwich location comes equipped with a touch screen for the ultimate relaxation + recovery experience. (16)

How it works:

While a traditional dry sauna heats the surrounding air to around 190 degrees, far infrared saunas use infrared lamps to release electromagnetic radiation. The radiation is absorbed by the body as much as 1.5 inches under the skin. The air temperature inside an infrared sauna, additionally, reaches a much more tolerable 125 degrees.

Frequency:

We recommend coming in at least 2-3 times a week. We often advise clients to combine it with other modalities to maximize athletic performance. For example, it can be great to do Infrared sauna 2x a week and on the other days, come in for a cryotherapy session. (17)

NanoVi™

Athletes use the NanoVi™ device to speed up muscle recovery, reduces oxidative stress, and boosts energy levels. Studies confirm it’s especially beneficial for endurance athletes, such as cyclists and long-distance runners.

Benefits of Nanovi for athletic performance include:

  • Lower lactate levels blood after intense training
  • Less DNA damage in endurance athletes
  • Improved heart rate variability (HRV) in elite endurance athletes
  • Better inflammatory response after a hard workout that spikes your heart rate

How it works:

While using the NanoVi ™ device, you virtually feel nothing. This is because the device augments a signal that is naturally generated by the body. This promotes healthy cellular activity and repairs cellular damage. NanoVi™ is not used to prevent cell damage, but it is designed to help cells after the damage has already occurred. In a nutshell, NanoVi ™ emits the exact same signal as the beneficial oxidative stress. (18)(19)

Frequency:

At a minimum, aim for fifteen-minute sessions at least three times a week. During rigorous training in more elite athletes, the more time on the device, the better because there’s lots of damage to repair. Use this recovery therapy both before and after strenuous workouts. NanoVi ™ helps athletes train harder, stay healthier, and optimize their physical and mental ability.  As a student-athlete, you can even use NanoVi ™ as you catch up on homework!

The bottom line – Book your trial appointments today at cold play cryo and decide for yourself.

At Cold Play Cryotherapy, we are committed to treating and preventing injuries in young (and older) athletes. With the fall season here, we want to offer trial sessions for our recovery therapies to all the athletes in our area. We have two locations, Greenwich & Darien, Connecticut.

Call us at 203-249-3400 to come in for your trial appointment today!