CrossFit kicked your butt? Or perhaps the reformer over-stretched your muscles? Rather than popping some ibuprofen (or pouring another glass of wine), there’s an option to combat post-workout soreness that we bet you’ve never considered: Whole Body Cryotherapy. The anti-inflammatory properties of extreme cold have been used to treat pain and inflammation for centuries. Cryotherapy provides the benefits of cold therapy without the downtime or inconvenience of a shivery soak.

“I’m in my 40s now,” says Dr. Jason Wendel, an award-winning, board-certified plastic surgeon whose Green Hills practice, Dr. J. J. Wendel Plastic Surgery, offers the treatment. “At this age, when I work out really hard, I’m sore afterward for two days. But with cryotherapy, I can exercise, perform surgery all day, get into the machine for two to three minutes and feel great. I wake up the next day, and I’m ready to go again with no aches or pain.”

Dr. Jason Wendel, an award-winning, board-certified plastic surgeon and owner of Dr. J. J. Wendel Plastic Surgery in Green Hills.

Dr. Jason Wendel, an award-winning, board-certified plastic surgeon and owner of Dr. J. J. Wendel Plastic Surgery in Green Hills.

What to expect from a cryotherapy treatment

A fast fix to avoid feeling wrecked after a tough session at the gym sounds great, but how enjoyable can it really be? Well, here’s what you can expect from a cryotherapy session. Let’s start with what to wear. Remove all of your jewelry, and wet clothing of any kind is a major no-no. You’ll remain in your undergarments, and Dr. Wendel’s Aesthetic Concierge provides you with neoprene gloves and warm socks, as well as a waffle robe that you’ll wear while entering and exiting the chamber.

Why would anyone think that entering a glacial, frigid chamber in underwear, gloves and socks is a good idea? The Japanese came up with it in the 1970s, utilizing the treatment as a healing aid for rheumatoid arthritis. After that, clinical studies were conducted in Europe, where modern whole body cryotherapy units were developed.

Heading in to the cryo chamber, you'll be provide with neoprene gloves, warm socks and waffle robe. Image: Dr. J. J. Wendel Plastic Surgery

Heading in to the cryo chamber, you’ll be provide with neoprene gloves, warm socks and waffle robe. Image: Dr. J. J. Wendel Plastic Surgery

Inside the chamber, it feels normal and then becomes frosty, but manageable; the absence of moisture in the nitrogen air makes the experience feel less frigid. Standing inside an octagon-shaped chamber with your head poking out is strange, but you are never left alone. A friendly conversation or listening to your favorite song helps pass the two to three minute treatment quickly, and there’s always the release button inside the chamber allowing you to exit at any time. Temperatures range from -284 degrees to -340 degrees Fahrenheit, and bear in mind that the last 30 seconds feel the coldest. When you get out of the chamber, your body immediately reheats within seconds, returning to normal body temperature.

How cryotherapy works

Cryotherapy stimulates your nervous system’s “fight or flight” response. The cooling skin sends signals to the brain, which activates your own naturally occurring healing mechanisms. Cryotherapy boosts circulation, causing an endorphin release. “This is better than afternoon coffee,” shares one client. Another adds, “As a first time cryo client, I didn’t know what to expect. I felt cool and refreshed — like a cold shower — but energized. And it lasted all day.”

You’ll appreciate the energy boost and how much better you feel, but you may also notice tighter pores and lower numbers on the scale thanks to a revved-up metabolism. And if that’s not enough? Cryotherapy also reduces cellulite. Simply put, when you exit the chamber, blood is pumped vigorously throughout the body, which enhances the oxygen supply and removal of toxins. As toxins are flushed away, muscles are toned.

These are just some of the additional benefits. “This is something you can do to feel better without medication, and it only takes three minutes,” explains Dr. Wendel.

Cryotherapy sessions start at $30. Click here for a complete menu of treatment packages.

Dr. J.J. Wendel Plastic Surgery is located 2103 Crestmoor Road, Nashville, TN 37215 in Green Hills. Call to schedule cryotherapy at (615) 921-2100 or visit their website to learn more about all of the services offered there. Single cryo sessions and treatment packages are available.

Sponsored by Dr. J. J. Wendel Plastic Surgery