6 Benefits of Ice Baths

Ice baths may not sound like the most relaxing way to spend your time, so it’s a good thing relaxation isn’t one of the benefits they claim to offer. Instead, ice baths provide a number of health benefits that motivate tons of people, especially athletes, to sit in ice water for extended periods of time. In fact, soaking in an ice bath is one of the best ways to heal your muscles after running for long distances. Bathing in ice water not only relaxes your muscles, but it also reduces inflammation, improves blood flow, helps with the nervous system, burns fat, and can also help alleviate symptoms of depression. Even soaking in a regular bath or swimming is known to be good for the muscles, but the basic theory behind these baths is that they reduce your body temperature after exercise. As a result, this leads to all of the benefits listed here. For many people, all of this is worth freezing in tub of ice for a bit. Be sure to consult with a professional if you need more information about how to take an ice bath in order to achieve the best results. Read on for more information about the benefits of these chilly baths.

1. Reduce Inflammation

One of the most notable benefits of ice baths is that they help reduce inflammation. After rigorous exercise, such as running, the muscles you have been using can become inflamed. Placing your body in cold water reduces its blood flow, and therefore eliminating inflammation and swelling. This is the same reason doctors recommend putting ice on an injury, such as a sprained ankle. When you sprain your ankle, tissues around the bone become damaged. If there happens to be a lot of swelling, that damage can intensify. This same swelling can occur in the muscles after exercising or running for long periods of time. If ignored, that swelling could eventually cause an injury or damage to the muscles. So, reducing the inflammation throughout your body after exercise is important in keeping your muscles strong and injury free. Some studies have even shown that athletes who participated in intense exercises for an extended period of time and then immersed their legs in an ice bath experienced less inflammation. Even when one leg was placed in an ice bath but not the other, they noticed a significant difference in the amount of inflammation on the leg that had not been in the ice bath.