Skip to comments.Ice Baths 'More Harm Than Good' For Athletes
Posted on 07/10/2007 6:23:26 PM PDT by blam
Ice baths 'more harm than good' for athletes
By Martin Beckford
Last Updated: 1:44am BST 11/07/2007
Athletes who take ice baths to prevent muscle soreness after exercise could be doing more harm than good, researchers said yesterday.
Sportsmen believe that taking a freezing dip allows the body to get rid of lactic acid, which can cause pain.
It was popularised by Paula Radcliffe, the marathon world record holder, who said taking a 10-minute ice bath after a race was "absolute agony" but claimed it helped her win gold in the 10,000m in the 2002 European championships.
However, a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine claims cold baths are of little benefit and those who took them in a test actually felt more pain afterwards.
The Australian study split 40 volunteers into two groups and after performing leg exercises, one set was immersed in an icy bath and the other in tepid water. Those who endured the ice water felt more pain 24 hours later than those who had a dip in tepid water.
The researchers, at the University of Melbourne, said "Ice water immersion actually increased the severity of pain."
But Gary Lough, Paula Radcliffe's manager and husband, told The Daily Telegraph that although she was aware of the new research, she would be unlikely to stop taking ice baths after running.
He said: "She's very open to other people's opinions, but a lot of these things come down to personal preference."
Interesting. It’s like, “Coffee’s going to kill you - no, it’s good for you!” “Don’t drink wine - wait, it’ll make you live longer!”
Every study in athletics comes with a study showing the opposite.
(I’m in no mood for ice baths after running, and I don’t have the facilities for it if I wanted to.)
“who said taking a 10-minute ice bath after a race was “absolute agony”
Memo to everyone:
Doing things that hurt are bad for you.
That’s the problem with very general questions. Ice baths are good for people with post-exercise joint swelling. If you base your conclusions on a broader audience, it is overly simplistic and meaningless.
Not to mention the severe shrinkage. (:^D)
"We think ice baths are great with an icy Coke!"
Another story made the news today.
Is Sven making a mistake?
If I really wanted to know, I’d check:
Runner’s world forums are really among the best on the internet, for some reason. I’m no big runner but it’s a friendly crowd when I’ve gone and easy to get registered on.
But I do run plenty, some cold water feels like it could do a good trick on the burn in legs.
Sister magazine of Runner’s World Forums are here too, http://www.runnersworld.co.uk/defaultForum.asp?sp=&v=6