August 7, 2007 Australian company iCool Sport has rolled out the “secret weapon” first developed for use at the 2004 Olympics in Athens – and unlike the secret weapons employed by some less scrupulous athletes, it’s both healthy and legal. The iCool Plunge Pool is a miniature, portable bath that can chill water to a specified degree without the inefficiency and uncertainty of involving the use of ice. The newest design is based on feedback from hundreds of elite athletes and specialists who have been using the original pools in research trials since 2003 and is now available to any coach or fitness enthusiast.
Though it might be cold comfort to the athletes, bodily submersion in icy water has many health benefits. Since coldness helps reduce swelling in muscles and bleeding in tissue, the iCool system will help damaged muscles rehabilitate. Because the Plunge Pool affects the whole body, this is especially useful in addressing potential muscle problems that the athlete may not even be aware of. The iCool is also an effective remedy for exhaustion and pain – a quick dip before, during, and after the race can significantly raise an athlete’s endurance levels.
Originally developed by Warren Lowry, a leading Soft Tissue Specialist at The Australian Capital Territory Academy of Sport, the product was designed to test the emerging theories being developed by Dr. Shona Halson and her research team at the Australian Institute of Sport. Traditional ice pools are not practical for controlling the accurate temperatures required for applying cryotherapy techniques and are generally large, impractical and immobile – all issues which the iCool system was designed to address.
The iCool system is available for AUD$1350, and includes a rechargeable inflation and deflation pump, carry bag, chlorine dispenser, and full set of non conducting hoses and fittings.