Ice Bath for Recovery?

This has grown in popularity recently and I wanted to address it with science-backed, peer review evidence to not confuse you on what you have been reading.

There have been claims that ice baths optimize training recovery, which is somewhat accurate because the coldness does in fact reduce muscle soreness and help with recovery [2], however it doesn’t seem to be very effective for those who lift weights to maximize hypertrophy and strength gains. Thinking long-term, using consistent ice baths may actually decrease your muscle and strength gains [3].

In a 12-week study done by the University of Queensland (several other studies were similarly recreated by University of Auckland and University of Oslo) they compared the effects of cold water on the body and active recovery and the changes on muscle mass/strength. The study suggested that when compared to a form of active recovery such as dynamic stretching, the consistent use of ice baths may actually impair anabolic signaling [1, 2, 3, 4].

Keep in mind, it isn’t a bad strategy to periodically utilize ice baths if you enjoy them…

But really, do you want to suffer in a freezing cold tub? It’s great that we have people like David Goggins [5] in the world, but he is a freak and a normal person wouldn’t find his training style very reasonable. (he is an incredible being, read his book “Can’t Hurt Me”, amazing life story…)

Anyways… Back to what I was saying.

Enjoy a sauna bath instead… Way more benefits and may help with increasing testosterone levels + muscle recovery + live longer + cleanse the body + have better skin + lose weight + sauna’s are amazing.

Click here to learn more about the amazing benefits the sauna can do for you.

If you are like me and not looking to lose muscle or strength, or feel awfully cold, after-training low-intensity cycling or dynamic stretching will be more effective for you overtime.

MAKE TODAY COUNT.

-Cooper

References:

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27396361
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/pmid/26174323/
  3. http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1113/JP272881/full
  4. Anabolism
  5. David Goggins
  6. Photo credit on the featured photo
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