Ice Water Bath a�� Scientific Research

Taking a plunge straight into ice water right after exercising is a very common practice which many professional athletes follow. This is a mode to recover quickly as it minimizes soreness and muscle pain after competitions or intense workouts.

Ice water bath

is a regular routine among runners such as Paula Radcliff to rugby players. So, if you are eager to know what is behind the ice water bath and does it really work, read the rest of the article to unravel the facts about

ice water bath


A few athletes combine contrast water therapy in addition to the ice water bath to get the same desired effect. This therapy alternates between warmer water and colder water. Let us know the scientific theory behind the ice water bath process.

Scientific Research Behind Ice Water Bath

Most of the studies conducted on the effects of contrast water therapy, cold water immersions and ice water baths offer contradictory or inconclusive study findings. According to a study published in the

a�?International Journal of Sports Medicine”

revealed that contrast water therapy and cold water immersions can help in recovery from short maximal efforts.

For this study, scientists analyzed a group of cyclists who completed a week of intense training sessions. After completion of each training session, the scientists used one of the recovery methods. They took 9 days break after each week of training sessions.

Four Recovery Methods

This recovery methods has the following methods:

  • Immersion in a 15 degree C pool for 14 minutes
  • Immersion in 38 degree C water for 14 minutes
  • Alternating between hot and cool water each minute for 14minutes
  • Complete rest for 14 minutes

The final result was that the cyclists gave better performance in time trial and sprint after undergoing contrast water immersion and cool water immersion. Their performance declined with complete rest and hot water baths.

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