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Hot Topic Tuesday: How Far Would You Go For Good Athletic Performance?

Some athletes are giving their training sessions the cold shoulder—and arm, leg, back... (Photo courtesy of Shutterstock)

How does stepping into a room cooled to -250 degrees sound? What if you were donning just sports bras, shorts and socks? Certain athletes in the UK are taking their workout cooldowns very seriously, in hopes that the frigid temps will help them recover more quickly after intense workouts. Rugby players in Wales use beyond freezing "cryotherapy chambers" during training camp, as do Olympic track and field stars. They stand in them for about the length of one song to reduce inflammation and "allow them to train in a way that would be impossible under normal conditions," according to one athlete quoted in a Wales Online story. In fact, the Wales rugby team has reached the World Cup semi-finals this year, which is their best showing since 1987. Now, non-athlete residents of Poland have the opportunity to try out the cold closets themselves after their sessions on the elliptical machines. FITNESS experts have noted that a slightly tamer method of this concept, like taking an ice bath after a workout, can help prevent soreness down the road. But it does bring on a severe case of the shivers.

Now tell us: Would you be willing to soak in an ice bath to recover more quickly? How about hanging out in a beyond-freezing room?