Ice Baths Are Popping Up Everywhere: Is It Time You Added One To Your Treatment Menu?

Thinking about dipping your toes into cold therapy? Here are all the ins and outs from Recovery Lab’s Head of Product & Partnerships, Ben Seymour.

If you’ve been noticing ice baths starting to appear everywhere from spas and clinics to post-workout recovery facilities and health clubs, you’re not imagining things. Ice baths seem to be the wellness world’s favourite new trend and we’re predicting we’ll be seeing many more of them around.

Said to boast a slew of benefits including easing fatigue, soothing sore muscles, reducing inflammation, supporting better sleep patterns, eliminating toxins, boosting immunity, and burning fat, it’s no surprise cold therapy is taking off.

With all this in mind, you may have wondered whether it’s time you added an ice bath to your own spa or clinic.

To help you decide, SPA+CLINIC consulted Recovery Lab Head of Product & Partnerships, Ben Seymour on the ins and outs of ice bath ownership and what to weigh up when determining whether it will bring advantages to your business.

Consider whether an ice bath would make sense in your space, with your existing facilities

First and foremost, Ben says you’ll want to think about “what other services the spa or clinic offers already” along with “how the ice baths [would be] used or fit into the clinic’s [existing] protocols and procedures.”

In other words, it’s key to consider whether an ice bath would be a complementary addition to your other facilities. If you have saunas in your venue, an ice bath could be an attractive option for clients wanting to do ‘contrast therapy’ which involves exposing the body to hot and cold temperatures at intervals.

While Ben is careful to note that he doesn’t think “adding an ice bath would help increase revenue dramatically in a spa or clinic,” he has noticed a growing appetite for ice bath usage in Recovery Lab’s own spaces.

“Ice bath usage has increased over the past six months at Recovery Lab. We are seeing a lot more people using the ice baths for a variety of reasons and a lot of people who wouldn’t have necessarily known the benefits previous to all of the current exposure, which is great,” says Ben.

Ice baths work best when integrated into a personalised treatment package

If you do decide to bring in an ice bath, Ben also says it’s important to work with clients to ensure the experience is tailored to each individual and their goals. Although ice baths can be used as standalone treatments, Ben thinks they’re ideally used as part of a series of regimens.

“We like to incorporate an ice bath with other modalities for a full 360-degree holistic recovery. For example, my favourite recovery ritual is doing 30 minutes of NuCalm, into a 30-minute infrared sauna and finishing with three to five minutes in the ice bath,” says Ben.

“With my current work and training load, this protocol helps me escape from my parasympathetic nervous state (‘fight or flight’) and allows my sympathetic nervous state to take over which is calming, [and allows one] to respond rather than react. This is where the magic happens. Productivity is greater and you will find that you’re having more restful sleeps,” explains Ben.

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