MLSE has shown the commitment to investing in front office personnel and basketball-related staff (McKechnie immediately comes to mind given what comes next). Now they need this:
The Suns are freezing their players off the court so that they will move more freely on the court. Cryotherapy has entered the NBA vernacular, and the Suns are one of four teams to have a cryosauna in their facility for a chilling training approach.
With the franchise's $50,000 investment in the equipment, Suns players are stepping into a nitrogen gas cylindrical chamber that accelerates and intensifies a process previously left to 12 minutes in an ice bath.
The Suns still use ice baths but now have a mechanism that requires only three minutes of a dry freeze. Marcin Gortat compares it to walking outside in Poland in the winter.
Players, while standing, rotate every 30 seconds. Bursts of gas blow from the interior sides of the unit to surround the player's body, starting out at minus-166 degrees and quickly cooling to between minus-256 and minus-274. The machine is capable of dipping to minus-320.
The hyper-cold temperature shocks the body, sending it into "survival mode," Suns head athletic trainer Aaron Nelson said. The immune system prompts blood to rush away from the extremities to protect the vital organs in the player's core, where the blood is oxygen- and nutrient-enriched. Once the three minutes in the chamber ends, the body relaxes from the stress and sends the enriched blood to areas it is needed, such as fatigued muscles.
"We use it for muscle recovery to pump the blood through the body," Nelson said. "We're trying to re-energize or reboot the body. It gives you a feeling of being cold and jump-starts your metabolism to feel refreshed the rest of the day."
Nelson and his staff have players use the cold tub also because it treats acute swelling and chronic soreness well with deeper penetration.
Ice baths are normally a lower-body treatment but Steve Nash dips in them up to his shoulders.
Cryotherapy is a whole-body treatment with only the player's head sticking out of the chamber.
"I don't like the cold tub at all," said center Robin Lopez, who never took an ice bath but uses the Cryosauna once or twice a day.
"I suppose it (the Cryosauna) energizes me. It has the same effects as the cold tub just in a compressed time."
After forward Grant Hill's knee surgery in September, he often went privately to a Scottsdale facility with a Cryosauana, making him less nervous about entering the chamber than his teammates when the equipment was added to the training room two weeks ago.
"I get in after a game," Hill said. "It's helped me a lot on back-to-backs. I also get in there sometimes before games. It's definitely cutting edge and one of the new methods of recovery that I think, in five to 10 years, we'll see that lots of pro and college teams have it. I don't know exactly what it's doing to your body but I know when you get out, you just feel really good. I've tried it after games, mornings of back-to-backs before the second games and before games, and I get great results."
The Cryosauna is part of the athletic trainers' philosophy to be more about injury prevention than treatment. The Suns have missed the fewest games to injury (four) of any NBA team.
"We're the carpenters," Nelson said. "It (the Cryosauna) is just another tool in our toolbox. There may be objective or subjective benefits. The psychological piece of that is better than anything. It's more important when I get feedback from players saying, 'I feel better when I do this.'
"I think a lot of teams will have something like this, and we just didn't want to fall behind."
Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/sports/arti...#ixzz1pTeZb0C7
Hopefully this is an investment the Raptors make to go along with McKechnie's training.
There are dangers if it is used improperly - ask Manny Harris. However, the key would be to use it properly i.e. no wet socks.