Physiological Effects of Icing

|, Training|Physiological Effects of Icing

Physiological Effects of Icing

Mercy Health Athletic Trainer

Mercy Health Tip of the Week

Icing, or cryotherapy, is used often for the rehabilitative treatment of athletic injuries including sprains, strains, bruises, and tendonitis. Icing diminishes pain, cellular metabolism, and muscle spasm minimizing the inflammatory response and improving recovery after soft tissue trauma by reducing tissue temperature slowing the rate of these chemical reactions. Ice also reduces pain associated with the micro-trauma of regular exercise and helps promote recovery. Cryotherapy coupled with compression improves the contact between the skin and ice, greater reducing the blood flow to the injured area, and increasing the insulation further reducing tissue temperatures.

Contradictions of cryotherapy include Raynaud’s disease, cold allergic conditions, and areas of impaired sensation. Areas where superficial nerves are located should also be areas of concern when applying ice.

* This content is not intended to replace any formal training plans directed by licensed coaches. You should always get your doctors go-ahead prior to embarking on any fitness regime. Mercy Health, Glass City Marathon and the Toledo Roadrunners Club are not offering this content to replace a monitored training plan. — Use this content as conversation starters with your doctors, nutritionists, coaches, etc.