Soaking in ice cold water.


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Mark Hudon

Trad climber
Hood River, OR
Topic Author's Original Post - Mar 4, 2013 - 09:18pm PT
Ice cold water will do wonders for your aching muscles, tendons and joints! I have old elbows and pullups and pushups really kill them. I fill a medium size cooler with water straight from the outside faucet and them submerge my arms as far as I can into it. It's crazy, nuts cold and I can hardly stand it at first but in a few days, I can stand it more and more. After four days, it's cold and it's a fright, but I can keep my arms in there for 10 minutes.
Believe me, it's one of the best things you can do for yourself after a workout. I figure it's pretty much keeping me in the game, without it, I'b be sidelined for sure.

Credit: Mark Hudon
gonzo chemist

Fort Collins, CO
Mar 4, 2013 - 09:23pm PT
These days, I just walk around outside in a t-shirt for 30 minutes ;-)

Doubles as training for alpine climbing!
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Mar 4, 2013 - 09:43pm PT
Someone told me all climbers are masochists. And to think... I tried to argue the point hahahahahahaha!


Mar 4, 2013 - 09:49pm PT
There was a recent (2012) article in the British Journal of Sports Medicine about ice water immersion as a recovery technique. The authors did a meta-analyis of the published literature and they concluded that ice water immersion decreased delayed onset muscle soreness and improved recovery of muscle power.

Sport climber
mammoth lakes ca
Mar 4, 2013 - 09:51pm PT
Too bad there weren't any beers in the chest...
the Fet

Mar 4, 2013 - 10:13pm PT
I did a tough mudder event last year, Arctic Enema is one of the challenges where you jump into a pool filled with ice and go under a barrier where you have to go totally under water / ice and come up on the other side and push up through a LOT of ice to get out. Cold water never bothered me, but I was surprised how good it felt after a few miles of uphill jogging. My whole body instantly felt better.

Also on the way back from climing in Hetch Hetchy I stopped and went in the lower part of Wapama Falls. It was like getting a whole body massage and iced at the same time. Awesome.

One more, after a day of climbing in the valley I'll often soak my feet and hands in Fern spring, ahhh so good!

Social climber
somewhere that doesnt have anything over 90'
Mar 5, 2013 - 01:10am PT
used alot of ice before and after the marathons I've run.

Social climber
Mar 5, 2013 - 01:13am PT
It ain't bullsh#t.


Trad climber
the crowd MUST BE MOCKED...Mocked I tell you.
Mar 5, 2013 - 01:21am PT
good thread

Boulder climber
Mar 5, 2013 - 01:26am PT
Too bad there weren't any beers in the chest...
If it's any consolation, that's pure vodka he's soaking in.

Trad climber
Butte, America
Mar 5, 2013 - 01:33am PT
I h8te cold water--but, in wrestling they made the injured take the dip into cold whirlpool "baths"...

...luckily, I never had to sit in the stainless vat of swirling chill

Hope your ailments become well and manageable sir Mark!!!!1111

Mar 5, 2013 - 01:53am PT
I read on one of these forums (Mountain Project, I think) about alternating cold water and hot water. Contrast baths or something like that. I was rehabbing a bust hand a couple of months ago and it felt good, definitely seemed to help. You might want to check that out.

Mar 5, 2013 - 04:18am PT
If u guys are ever in Whistler. Go.

Hydrotherapy is amazing.
Captain...or Skully

Mar 5, 2013 - 08:35am PT
I soaked my bum foot(New Dawn, another story) in cold water a bunch.
It hurt GOOD. Really helped.

some eastside hovel
Mar 5, 2013 - 09:49am PT
I was watchin' hockey last night and they were saying that the Coyotes goalie(Smith)goes to the locker room every intermission and ditches all his gear,soaks in the cold tub,puts all the gear back on and goes back out for the next period.Total ritual and he swears by it.I was actually most amazed that he can do that time wise.That's a LOT of gear.

Trad climber
Where the Hoback and the mighty Snake River meet
Mar 5, 2013 - 10:10am PT
Is this a guy thing?

Cold water makes me hurt so bad I can't stand it! I've tried the cold therapy, ended up making my muscles cramp up and hurt like hell! Only time it helps is when my knee is actually swollen, otherwise, makes my joints feel like glass.

What up?
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Mar 5, 2013 - 11:29am PT
cold is a great specific anti-inflamation agent, and ice baths of all sorts are used by professional athletes to manage inflammation due to their activities.

I've used it for my back when the pain is very specific, better than massive doses of vitamin I in my opinion and definitely an important treatment to use on aging bodies...

But I have to wonder if following the path of professional athletes is such a good thing... for one, they are usually involved in their sport for a relatively short period of their lives, could be a few years, could be 10 years maybe the lucky ones would go 20 years. And the various remedies they come up with to extend and maximize those careers are rather short term, and often accelerate the deleterious effects of their participation in those sports.

The body responds to physical insult by many processes, inflammation is one of them. Modern training techniques challenging the body and then letting it rest. The desired response is to build skeletal-muscular strength. However, this is only one possible response, and what the body does depends on many factors, but age is certainly one of them.

By treating the symptoms of injury one might prevent additional injury (we know that training on inflamed joints and muscles is bad) but we are treating symptoms.

This begs the question, how does one train for longevity in a physical activity. We certainly cannot train like we were young. I've pondered this for a long time and haven't come up with much, really, but a few realizations are apt.

One is that strength building is pretty much complete, and additional strength is not likely to be easily accomplished given the hormonal state of aging bodies.

Another is that our knowledge of the movements is much much better than it was when we were starting, and we have much more experience applying those movements to our objectives.

The third is that training to maintain our capabilities involves both challenging our strengths but importantly also our weaknesses (think balanced training, where stabilizing muscles are toned, push and pull trained, etc.) and that we pay attention to training that helps prevent injury (that includes maintaining range of motion with strength).

Along with all this, maintaining good form when training is paramount... once form is lost the desired effect of the exercise is lost also.

As with all things about aging, leaving egotistical notions behind is an important prerequisite to effective training.

I don't think that training an aged body to continue athletic performance is a well understood aspect of medicine or sport... but certainly we can collectively fill in the details.

Trad climber
Mar 5, 2013 - 11:46am PT
Ed, I'm no expert at all, but my wife is a physical therapist and very active and fit as she turns 50. She sees quite a bit of literature and anecdote that shows that you can gain muscle mass through resistance training into your 80's if not beyond. Surely injury and motivation are limiting factors.

Icing as therapy against inflammation has a long history, and is effective for all kinds of injury treatment, including range of motion. Its also effective when used in conjunction with heat treatments, as the combination appears to have a flushing effect. Again, I'm just blowing out my ass here.

Trad climber
SF Bay Area, California
Mar 5, 2013 - 01:55pm PT
that's way too painful for me to do that to myself...i just can't get into that level of self abuse, even if you call it 'recovery'...heheheheh!!

a long while back, a trainer had me do an ice bath treatment. Almost passed out into the water. After that it was heat treatment for me...which suits me just fine! I'll take it hot any day! ;)

does this mean that ice climbing could be considered as an aggressive form of physical therapy? ;)



Trad climber
Philadelphia, PA
Mar 5, 2013 - 02:18pm PT
Ed, that's just depressing to read, I do hope you're wrong. I didn't really start climbing until my late 20's, and the delayed recovery was already obvious from other activities. Now that I'm in my 40's, suffering new indignities every year, it's a good thing statistical or genetic freaks like Fred Beckey exist to maintain my motivation.

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