Sprained ankle? Ice it. Knee pain? Tough workout? You guessed it - another job for ice. Everyone knows that ice is the cure-all for injury and soreness, just like everyone knows lobotomies are the cure all for mental illness.
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When I sprained my ankle, I iced it. If I was trying to get over a niggling injury leading into a big sporting event? You guessed it, I iced it!
There is no hiding the fact that up until this year, I have been an avid user of ice as a treatment option. However, after reading his book, and doing a bit of my own research, I tend to agree with what Reinl is talking about. What I got from the pages was a new found opinion on effective treatment options for injuries, and more of an understanding of cold therapy and what it really does to the human body. However, he presents a very valid and well constructed argument about how society has got it wrong when it comes to icing.
This is evident in his detailed use of research figures and study results throughout the book. Reinl also writes in a captivating way which makes it easy for readers to understand his point: that icing only delays the healing process in the human body and that inflammation is now actually a bad thing, but rather a critical stage that must occur for the body to heal itself.
Using very detailed and descriptive examples Reinl allows readers to grasp the point that icing only delays the inflammation process and as a result, slows down he healing process. In CrossFit, Kelly Starrett is one of them. Starrett, like many other doctors around the globe, are right behind Reinl in his push to change the way we think about icing. His foreword at the beginning of the book only makes it easier for us to have faith in what Reinl is writing about.
Toward the end of the book he lists of a number of alternatives for specific injuries like lower back, shoulder, knee injures etc. Throughout the book Reinl uses grocery shopping to compare inflammation and swelling, and likens a toothpaste tube to fluid dynamics.
His use of analogies makes it easier to understand his claims about ice. The Illusionary Treatment Option is very detailed and informative, it is also a bit repetitive at times. I definitely felt like I was reading the same thing over and over again a few times during the book and would often read the same argument, or point, made in a different way later in the book. Had I not, I may very well still be icing my body on a weekly basis, still believing it to be an effective method of treatment.
The Illusionary Treatment Option is a great insight into icing and the hidden truths about cold therapy. As I read the book I could really relate to what Reinl was stating and his arguments and points all make complete sense to me. While it may be a little repetitive at times, this book is a great eye opener for many people, and no doubt it made me question some of treatment methods I had been using for decades.
I would encourage any athlete, trainer, or coach to read this book and make their own mind up on the matter. Either way, it provides detailed information about icing, uncovers some of the myths about cold therapy, and gives us some great alternatives to use instead of icing. There is no doubt the book has made me question the way I use ice and cold therapy moving forward.
1: Gary Reinl – Stop Icing Your Injuries
Book Review: “Iced” by Gary Reinl
Book Review: "Iced" by Gary Reinl