Cryotherapy is widely used in sports to facilitate recovery from exercise-induced muscle damage that often results from strenuous training and/or competition. However, a paucity of evidence exists on the therapeutic values of repeated air pulsed cryotherapy (CRYO) application to suggest its usefulness to clinicians, coaches, sports scientists and athletes in the field of sports and rehabilitation. Aim: This study investigates the effectiveness of CRYO on the recovery from delayed onset of muscle soreness (DOMS) induced by eccentric exercise. Materials and methods: Thirty-two participants (21.31±1.03 years; height 1.72±0.05 m; BMI 22.15±1.69 kg.cm-2) were equally randomized into CRYO group and control group (CONT). DOMS was induced by eccentric contractions of elbow flexors. Visual analogue scale score (VAS), mid arm circumference (MAC), pressure pain threshold (PPT), range of motion of active elbow flexion (ROM-AF), passive elbow flexion (ROM-PF), active elbow extension (ROM-AE), passive elbow extension (ROM-PE) and isometric peak torque of elbow flexors (IPT) were measured at pre-exercise (PRE), immediately, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 7 days post exercise. Results and discussion: There were significant interactions effect (group X time) with (P<0.05) for VAS, MAC, PPT, ROM-PF, ROM-AE, and ROMPE. Additionally, all outcome measures (except for ROM-AF and IPT) demonstrated a significant improvement (P<0.05) in DOMS recovery in the CRYO group compared to CONT group. Conclusion: A 20 minutes (4 session X5 minutes) session for 5 consecutive days of repeated air pulsed cryotherapy has beneficial effects on the recovery of DOMS on elbow flexors from eccentric exercise.
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- Delayed onset muscle soreness
- Air pulsed cryotherapy
- Eccentric exercise