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Chilling Out : Why Cryotherapy is Cooler Than You Think

by Nikki Kumar

A novel journey of health and wellness with CRYO Thailand.

By Ayush Madan

As a climber and a fitness enthusiast, I am constantly on the lookout for the next best recovery treatment to add to my arsenal. In my previous deep dive into cold immersion therapy, I explored the many physical and mental health benefits of ice baths. I also briefly touched on another form of cold immersion, which I recently became much more familiar with: cryotherapy. 


Today, cryotherapy has become a scientifically-backed and widely accepted wellness practice. It involves exposing your body to temperatures as low as -140 C to encourage muscle recovery, manage pain, reduce inflammation, and promote restful sleep. 

Cold air narrows the blood vessels, meaning that nerve signals from anywhere you feel chronic pain can be alleviated. Furthermore, cryotherapy sends your body into a fight-or-flight response, diverting blood flow to your critical organs like your heart and brain. This in turn increases heart rate and circulation, driving oxygen-rich blood to your muscles and speeding up recovery. Altogether, expect to be able to train harder and for longer, all while being virtually unaffected by small pains and aches.

My experience:

Once I arrived at the facility, I was first asked to read a health questionnaire. Cryotherapy is not recommended for those who have recently undergone surgery, active cancer patients, pregnant women, young children, or those with uncontrolled heart disease. Next, I was directed to the changing room, where I got myself ready for the chamber. I changed into a pair of trunks, and put on a mask, knee-high socks, thick comfy slippers, and insulated gloves. These precautions are necessary to protect my extremities and put a buffer between the freezing cold air and my airways.

My cryotherapist explained to me that I would be in the chamber for three minutes total. And since it was my first time, they would start me off at a brisk -110 C. I walked into the chamber and inhaled sharply as the door sealed in front of me. In seconds, liquid nitrogen cooled breathable air filled the chamber, shocking my body into an adrenaline state. Shivering and teeth chattering, I turned myself to the right every 45 seconds as per my cryotherapist’s instructions, ensuring even coverage across my body. It was so cold that when I blinked I could feel the weight of my frozen eyelashes. Each breath I took reminded me of the coldest snow day I had experienced times 1000. And yet, surprisingly, it was so much easier than an ice bath. To be honest, I was enjoying myself, dancing to the tune of Shadow – Bleachers. When my time was up I stepped out and let out the biggest sigh of relief.

For the rest of the day I was flying high. I felt clear, balanced, and relaxed. But at the same time, I also felt energised and absolutely awake. I did not experience the usual 2 pm slump at work, and my energy levels remained high well into the evening. That night, I slept better than I had in many days, and I woke up the next day feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.

A conversation with Marc Perotti

Owner and CEO of CRYO Thailand

Can you tell me about the inspiration behind starting CRYO Thailand?

My journey into cryotherapy began when I suffered a shoulder injury while playing professional golf in the UAE. Following just a few sessions at the flagship CRYO facility in Dubai, the chronic pain in my shoulder faded. After discovering cryotherapy’s benefits for my own health and wellness, I saw an opportunity to introduce it to Bangkok, where it was not yet widely available. I personally do no less than two treatments a week. Since I run most days, it really helps with my recovery and gives me a performance boost.

How often do you meet with your team?

I work every day and never really switch off. I am the CEO and owner of the company, but I see myself more as an owner and focus on setting a vision for the company and ensuring the team understands and executes it. My wife Tisana is my partner in life and in business. We run the business together, doing everything as a team.

How has CRYO Thailand evolved since its inception?

We opened our first location in February 2020, just before the COVID-19 lockdown. The initial mandates made our start quite difficult, since we wouldn’t know if we would be allowed to be open until the day before. But we remained resilient, and I believe solving these problems gave us a solid foundation to build the business on. We’ve since expanded to a second and third location, and are now planning a fourth in Sukhumvit Soi 24. 

Can you describe the safety measures in place at CRYO Thailand?

Safety is our top priority. We are fully approved by the Thai FDA, and conduct thorough training for our staff, ensuring they understand how to operate the equipment safely. We also have experts working with us, including physiotherapists and anti-aging doctors. Lastly, we conduct health consultations with every client to ensure cryotherapy is suitable for them.

Why three minutes?

Three minutes is considered optimal for stressing the body enough to trigger the desired physiological responses without causing harm. It’s based on extensive research and ensures a balance of safety and effectiveness. 

Do you foresee cryotherapy becoming more popular in the future?

Cryotherapy is already gaining popularity, especially in the USA and Europe, where it is recognised as a deductible treatment for arthritis. I can confidently say we are currently the largest and only cryotherapy centre in Thailand, and I expect our expansion to only increase as awareness grows. As more research supports its efficacy, I believe it will continue to become more mainstream globally.

Anything else you would like our readers to know?

Cryotherapy is not a one and done treatment, it is a lifestyle treatment, which you must incorporate into your health and wellness routine. As someone who regularly tracks his performance, I find the most important factor to my fitness is sleep, followed by cryotherapy. You may think you are only in there for a few minutes, but the internal effects last much longer. So do yourself a favour, and after you have had a Cryo session, choose a healthy meal so your body can nourish itself over the next six hours as the treatment runs its course.

In conclusion, cryotherapy is a valuable tool in your wellness journey. It has the power to enhance your mental clarity, as well as reduce chronic pains and aches, and boost your physical performance. If you or a loved one are curious about cryotherapy, I encourage you to go try it out at one of the three CRYO facilities in Bangkok. I guarantee you, it will be an experience you will never forget – and one you might just fall in love with.

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