Ice Baths – Good or Bad?

Are ice baths worth the freeze?

What are the benefits of ice baths and are they worth it?

Unfortunately, there are two camps on the use and effectiveness of ice baths and using ice.

On one side, they appear to have great benefits to the athlete.  Running is as much recovering from runs as it is from actually running.  Using ice after a hard run or workout reduces inflammation from muscles, tendons, and ligaments. The faster you can recover from a workout, the sooner you can do the next workout, which eventually turns into doing more work, and the more work you can do, the faster you’ll be.

Then there’s the camp that says ice baths aren’t needed anymore.  The evidence suggests that icing may help, but it also might not.  It’s one of those “if you believe it works, stick with it” but if not, then you don’t need it.  So the choice is yours: if you believe in ice baths, go right ahead! If you’re unsure or don’t like them, the consensus is that you don’t have to try them!

Here are some articles (not by me) about icing down after a workout:

  1. 8 Ice Bath Dos and Don’ts | ACTIVE

  2. Do Ice Baths Help or Hurt Your Training? | Runner’s World

  3. A Recovery Ice Bath Isn’t (Always) Such a Good Idea

Philly Ice Bath (3)
Coach Marc icing in a stream

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