By now, you’ve most likely heard about cryotherapy. It’s being used by everyone from professional athletes to that friend of yours that tries out all of the new health trends. So what about for someone like me- who has been trying to get back on track with my health? To learn more, I headed to CryoEmpire in Manhattan to experience a few of their services to see for myself.
When you first step off the elevator into CryoEmpire, you’re not met with a doctor’s office feel. It’s very much a high end spa vibe with a friendly receptionist to greet you.
To the right is a hallway of rooms where some of the magic happens. To the left is a room with couches surrounding a warm fireplace- much like a nice living room inside someone’s apartment. The difference are the mats atop the cushions that will warm you after you step out of negative hundred degree temperatures. Before beginning, I sat down with Arty, the marketing director at CryoEmpire to learn more about cryotherapy itself and some other information about their available treatments and services.
Firstly, who benefits best from cryotherapy?
Anybody and everybody- especially athletes and dancers- but also regular healthy, active people, people with skin conditions, etc.
How many sessions are needed in order for people to see and/or feel results?
Generally, people feel benefits right after the first session. However, for a more permanent effect or when specific issues needs to be addressed – 5 sessions twice per week is a good start. And then continue once per week for maintenance.
What are some ailments/issues that cryotherapy helps that aren’t spoken about as much?
Originally, cryotherapy was designed for rheumatoid arthritis. But because of its ability to reduce inflammation in the entire body, cryotherapy can be used to help with a variety of conditions; such as inflammatory bowels, chemotherapy treatments, autoimmune conditions, etc. Cryotherapy can also be used to safely reduce weight, as you can burn up to 800 calories per 3 minute session!
All of the other cryo chambers I have seen are only up to the chest area. CryoEmpire’s are whole body chambers. Can you explain how this is possible?
Our Cryo Arctic whole body cryotherapy chamber has the highest safety standards because it filters out nitrogen, thereby preventing any nitrogen- to- skin contact as well as preventing nitrogen inhalation. You breathe in pure cold air, without any other additional gasses. Secondly, because the entire body is submerged (the most typical machines have shoulders and head exposed), the treatment is highly effective; the vagus nerve in the back of the head gets activated, as well as all the neck/shoulder muscles. *For claustrophobia, we have an option to roll down the window while the body is still submerged entirely inside the chamber.
Do you offer group rates?
Yes! We do that very often. The price varies, depending on the packages chosen, if food is being catered, etc.
Anything else you’d like us to share?
When people ask ‘how young are you?’- we say it’s not about your actual age, but how old you feel. With the state of the art facility facing Fifth Avenue, our cutting edge equipment, and a superior medical advisory board, CryoEmpire is in a league of its own!
Once it was time to try out my first ever session of cryotherapy, I was led behind another set of doors to a dressing room area and given a robe, knee high socks, a headband to keep my ears warm, gloves, and sandals. The tech explained exactly what would happen as I entered the chamber- and that she would be speaking to me the entire time, letting me know how much longer I had left. If for any reason I wanted to come out early, she would open the chamber. I consider myself to be quite claustrophobic, but I opted to get the full experience and I had no problem with the closed chamber.
How did it go? Well, it was cold of course! I opted for the second level- which is at around -200 degrees. It is a dry air- so it’s cold but tolerable. The socks and gloves help your smaller extremities- but I did feel like whatever moisture was in my nose definitely froze! The tech updated me every few seconds and asked how I was doing- I signaled that I was fine as I listened to the music that played into the chamber.
After my three minutes in almost -200 degrees, I was whisked over to the couches where I enjoyed a warm cup of tea by the fire. I watched as the goosebumps on my legs disappeared and I immediately felt recharged and relaxed. I was told I’d sleep like a baby that night and then I headed down the hallway to try the cryofacial.
The facial consists of ten minutes of nitrogen-cooled air on the face and neck to improve skin’s appearance. According to their website, it naturally constricts your blood vessels during the session, which then allows them to dilate after it’s over. The constriction and dilation of these blood vessels in a short amount of time promote toxins to flush out faster, boosts circulation, and reduces inflammation. The treatment also offers immediate relief of eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, and other inflammatory skin conditions.
Did it feel like frostbite? New Yorkers are certainly no stranger to cold hitting our face. Most of the time, it felt cool and relaxing- with a few moments where it felt like cold wind hitting my face as I waited for a late 6 train. After, I felt even more rejuvenated and my skin felt great.
Lastly, I headed to try out the recovery boots. In a room overlooking 5th avenue, I sipped on more tea while the boots went to work. Recovery boots work by using compressed air to massage your legs- which in turns helps improve circulation and reduce muscle soreness. Of course, these boots are geared more towards athletes and runners, but the benefits of improving circulation is great for everyone.
Overall, I understand how cryotherapy can work wonders and services like the ones offered at CryoEmpire are great for athletes and professionals. For someone like me who is set out to fix the damage done to my body from my careless 20’s, I think the benefits still exist when in conjunction with a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes all you need is a refreshing recharge or boost to continue on the journey, and these services can definitely help.
During the rest of February, CryoEmpire is offering a nice two for one special. RSVP to [email protected].
Must be two people booked for the services. Services limited to full body Cryotherapy, CryoFacial, IV Drips and Recovery Boots.
For more information, visit www.cryoempire.com.