Those of us who have experienced a stiff or frozen shoulder know the importance of reducing inflammation and increasing range of motion to the joint.The sooner we can relieve the stiffness, the sooner the pain will subside. However, movement at the shoulder joint is often very painful when injured and quite unpleasant due the overall design of this excessively moveable joint. Along with the many movements that the shoulder can produce comes equal opportunity for pain to be experienced. The ActiveWrap® shoulder ice pack is an ideal asset in reducing shoulder pain while performing therapeutic range of motion activities. The ActiveWrap® shoulder ice wrap helps to block pain receptors in the joint without restricting movement. Exercises such as overhead pulleys, shoulder wall climbs (for increased flexion), internal/external rotational stretching, pendulum swings are all easily performed with the ergonomic sleeve design of ActiveWrap® in place. The included reusable ice packs are super flexible and conforming so the patient does not have to fight increased resistance of a rock hard ice bag atop their shoulder. Rehab professionals, next time you have that tough shoulder case, consider an ActiveWrap® Shoulder Ice Pack to boost their R.O.M (without pain killers), it just may be what the doctor ordered.
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March 15, 2011 Click Link To View Posting
Active Wrap Ice and Heat Compression Wraps
Injury is part of the package when it comes to running. If you speak
to any experienced runner then they will more than likely have spent at
least some time recovering from one of the many ailments that plagues
the sport such as stress fractures, tendon damage or shin splints.
Cross training, gym work, rest sessions and running on soft surfaces
all play their part in guarding against injury, but when those twists
and twinges do occur then often ice is one of the best treatments for
reducing swelling and speeding up recovery.
Active Wrap products have been developed to offer targeted hot and
cold therapy treatment to the area where you need it most. No more do
you have to struggle with ice packs or frozen peas to cover the area of
swelling as the wraps conform to your joint contours which means that it
is easy to apply both compression and hot or cold treatment to the area
of swelling or pain without struggling to keep any ice or heat pads in
The Active Wrap products are available for all of the major joints
and can be used to apply both hot and cold treatments to the damaged
area of the joint.
The ankle wrap is perfect for applying ice to a twisted or tender
ankle – which is an all too common injury that runners suffer from
during cross country or trail running.
The wraps include ice/heat packs that are held into the wrap using
Velcro. This makes them easily to detach for freezing and then to
Active Wrap products have been through thousands of texts and now
carry the Physioquality seal of approval which means that they are used
nationwide by physiotherapists and sports professionals worldwide.
Active Wrap products are available from the Active Wrap website and are supplied with a free drawstring bag.
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January 20, 2011 By Skyler Meine
Ice and heat are the most common treatments for injury and soreness. Over the years you probably have heard of many different protocols for how to utilize ice and heat to improve recovery from injury. Lets make sure that you know exactly what you should be doing.
The hated, at least by most people, ice treatment should be used during the first 48 hours to reduce swelling and inflammation. Ice compression should be done for 10-15 minutes and repeated 30 minutes after ice is removed from the injured area for the first couple hours after the injury. Then reduced to 10-15 minutes every couple of hours. Don’t over-do it because ice can cause frost bite. For overuse injuries ice can be used at the end of a workout to help control inflammation. But don’t ever ice these areas before a workout or sporting event it will reduce performance.
Heat is the treatment that most people look forward to. Heat helps relax and loosen muscles, and gets blood flowing to that area. It is recommend that heat treatments shouldn’t be done for more than 15-20 minutes and area shouldn’t be swollen or inflamed. Heat can be used for overuse injuries before an activity to get your blood flowing to that area.
Ice and heat treatments have come a long way since the days when I would sprain my ankle and put ice in a bag and use an ace bandage to hold it on the injured area. Now there are compression wraps that are designed for specific areas of the body and gels that can be warmed or frozen. The ice and compression of the R.I.C.E. model are now taken care of with one easy solution.
ActiveWrap, a company I was recently introduced to, produces these products and they gave me the opportunity to try them out. I liked how comfortable the ankle ice/heat wrap and the knee ice/heat wrap were to wear. I didn’t have to constantly adjust them or have to lay perfectly still to get the desired effect. If you have any overuse injuries or would just like to have something available for those rare ankle sprains these are definitely the products you want available.
We will be giving an active wrap product away today on our giveaway page www.facebook.com/myfitnessdeals. To receive an additional entry in our giveaway leave a comment at the end of this post. Active wrap is also offering all of our readers $5 off any orders you make for the next 30 days if you use the coupon code: FITDEAL5.
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Ice, anyone? Ice isn't just for cold drinks. In
the past eight to ten years, many studies have shown the benefits of ice as
therapy. Here are the answers to some common ice-related questions.
What Does Ice Do?
Ice is one of the simplest, safest, and most
effective self care techniques for injury, pain, or discomfort in muscles and
joints. Ice will decrease muscle spasms, pain, and inflammation to bone and
soft tissue. You can use ice initially at the site of discomfort, pain, or
injury. You can also apply ice in later stages for rehabilitation of injuries
or chronic (long-term) problems.
During an initial injury, tissue damage can cause uncontrolled swelling. This
swelling can increase the damage of the initial injury and delay the healing
time. If you use ice immediately, you will reduce the amount of swelling. Ice
decreases all of these: swelling, tissue damage, blood clot formation,
inflammation, muscle spasms, and pain. At the same time, the ice enhances the
flow of nutrients into the area, aids in the removal of metabolites (waste
products), increases strength, and promotes healing. This "ice
effect" is not related to age, sex, or circumference of the injured area.
What are the 4 Stages In Ice Therapy?
There are four official stages to ice. The
first stage is cold, the second is burning/pricking, the third stage is aching,
which can sometimes hurt worse than the pain. The fourth and most important
stage is numbness. As soon as this stage is achieved, remove the ice. Time
duration depends upon body weight. Twenty to thirty minutes should be the
maximum time per area. If it is necessary to reapply ice, let the skin go to
normal temperature or go back to the third stage of aching.
How Does Ice Therapy Work?
Ice initially constricts local blood vessels
and decreases tissue temperature. This constriction decreases blood flow and
cell metabolism, which can limit hemorrhage and cell death in an acute
traumatic injury. After approximately 20 minutes of ice, blood vessels in the
injured area then dilate (open) slowly, increasing the tissue temperature, an
effect which is termed "reactive vasodilation." A study reported in
the Journal of Orthopedic Sports Physical Therapy, (Jul/Aug, 1994), found that,
despite the reactive vasodilation, there was a significant sustained reduction
in local blood volume after ice was applied.
What Does This Mean For Me?
It can mean a lot, if you are injured or in
discomfort! Ice therapy can help the area heal faster, and there will be a
decrease in pain and swelling and an increase in lymphatic drainage.
Why Ice After A Workout?
In the past 28 years, there have been many
studies of ice as a therapy tool for injuries. Many of these studies have had
conflicting conclusions, but improvements in technology are giving researchers
new data. There is no doubt in the minds of many researchers and doctors that
ice is the most widely used and efficient form of cryotherapy in medicine
today. A 1994 study sited in The American Journal of Sports Medicine (Jul/Aug)
showed ice affects not only the arterial and soft tissue blood flow, but also
the metabolism of the bone, in a positive way. This is significant in the
healing process of an injury to a joint.
When Should I Use Ice?
For the greatest benefits, use ice after
exercise and not before. In the Journal of Sport Rehabilitation (Feb/1994), a
study on the ankle was conducted to see if ice should be used on an injury
before exercise. The finding showed decreased temperature reduces the joint
mechanoreceptor sensitivity and thereby alters joint position sense, exposing
the joint to possible injury. In conclusion, cooling a body part prior to athletic
performance is contraindicated, which is academic-speak for "probably a
It was once believed the use of ice was only beneficial in the first 24 hours
after an injury. Recent scientific studies have shown the benefits of ice over
the long term. During the initial stage of an acute injury (within 24-48
hours), or during the chronic stage (after 48 hours) ice can be very beneficial
in promoting wellness.
Can I Ice As A Precaution?
You can use ice immediately following any
workout, discomfort, or injury. If the swelling or pain does not decrease
within a reasonable time (24 to 48 hours), consult a physician.
Is Ice Safe?
Ice therapy is very safe when used within the
treatment time recommended. Don't use ice if you have the following conditions:
rheumatoid arthritis, Raynaud's Syndrome, cold allergic conditions, paralysis,
or areas of impaired sensation. Do not use ice directly over superficial nerve
areas. In a study printed in the Archives of Physical Medical Rehabilitation
(Jan/1994), the use of ice was tested on spinal cord-injured and able-bodied
men. The results were that ice and cooling down the body temperature may evoke
a vascular response to cold stimulus that may be mediated in part by the spinal
cord and by supra-spinal centers, causing a change in blood pressure.
How Should Ice Be Used In Conjunction With
Ice can be combined with movement. Once the
fourth stage of icing has been achieved, numbness, gentle range of motion and
isometric exercises can begin. These movements should be painless, stressing
circular, spiral, and diagonal movements. Once the numbness has worn off,
re-ice and exercise again. This can be done two or three times a day. Ice can
cause changes in the collagen fibers of the muscle. Strenuous exercise is a bad
idea during an ice treatment, as this can result in further damage to the
How Does Ice Combine With Other Therapies?
In March of 1995, an interesting study was
conducted on the use of ice and ultrasound. Ultrasound is an instrument used in
assisting the healing process to damaged tissue. The study found if ultrasound
was followed by a five-minute application of ice, the muscle significantly
increased in size. When ice was applied first followed by ultrasound, there was
little or no change in the muscle fibers. One of the important conclusions of
this study is after exercising, take a shower first, before applying ice, to
receive the maximum benefits.
Laurel J. Freeman, B.A., a nationally certified sports massage therapist in
Florida, has worked on many world-class athletes and has given numerous
lectures in health related field. She developed, teaches, and practices
Reprogramming Neuromuscular Responses @ (RNR). Laurel is a member of the
Florida Track Club.
Courtesy of FootNotes and the Road Runners Club of America.
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Cold vs Heat Therapy
Written for Inside Gymnastics Magazine Coaches Guide 2006
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Much of today’s use of
cryotherapy in the gym is in the acute or early stage of injury. We
have all seen young athletes running around the soccer field or
gymnasium juggling a dripping bag of ice, stopping only momentarily to
slurp a little drink from the corner of the bag in youthful naivety.
Let’s face it…it’s tough enough to get an energetic youngster to sit
still, let alone strap an uncomfortable bag of ice to them as well.
However, the simple routine of utilizing cold wraps or ice wraps can go a
long way in keeping your athletes healthy.
But when do you use cold and when do you use heat on an injury? Well
most of us agree that heat generally feels better on the surface. Heat
is frequently used for pre-activity to help relax stiffness in joints
and the chronically injured. Heat can play a nice role in improving
muscle stretching prior to exercise, hence, the term warm-up. A fun
little demonstration is to show your athlete a frozen rubber band and a
warm rubber band and demonstrate what stretches longer without
The use of cold therapy is designed to physiologically block pain. How,
you ask? Well when a muscle is in its shortened state, it can program a
repeating process to influence nerves in the area to continually spasm.
These spasms can be painful but eventually broken with the use of cold
therapy. We can dive into a complex discussion on the physiological
process known as the gate theory of pain here but we’ll save that for
another day. In a nutshell, the cold pack application is used to bring
the muscle back to a more natural resting state without producing more
The common acronym P.R.I.C.E. is still the best rule of thumb for
immediate onset injuries and ice application, otherwise known as Protect, Rest,
Ice, Compression, and Elevation. P.R.I.C.E is very effective in the
initial treatment of soft tissue injuries such as sprains, strains, and
contusions. The use of cold therapy following a tough workout can
assist in recovery and help prevent the many overuse injuries that
plague the sport. An ounce of prevention can really go a long way for a
young athlete. Remember that a proper cool-down is just as important as
a proper warm-up.
Cold therapy can come in many forms. Ice cubes, cold baths, gel packs,ice wraps
and topical gels have all been utilized at one time or another. When
dealing with young athletes, I tend to steer clear of any toxic-chemical
based instant packs for the simple reason of safety and curiosity. My
experience is that if a cold wrap is easy and comfortable for a
youngster to wear then they will actually follow through with the
treatment and eventually make a habit of doing it for prevention. The
first couple minutes of cold may be tough to swallow for the young
athlete but once they’ve made it past the initial stage it becomes
smooth sailing for the remaining duration. The cold does not have to be
teeth-chattering and should be applied for no more than 15 minutes at a
time. Just remember, too much cold can be damaging to the injury and
the underlying tissue, so time duration is very important. Some
individuals can be very sensitive to cold so make sure your athlete has
a barrier (paper towel or thin layer of fabric) between the skin and
cold treatment. Cold is generally applied during the first 48-72 hours
or until swelling has subsided.
By Shawn J. Hickling BSc, PTA
Shawn received his degree in Exercise Physiology from Chapman University.
He has worked in the field of Sports & Orthopedic Physical Therapy for over 15 years and is the founder of ActiveWrap Inc. 2003-2004 Official Therapy Wrap of USAG and United Spirit Assoc.