Let’s talk heart rate variability and cryotherapy. Studies show that cryotherapy can help increase your heart rate variability (HRV), making you healthier and in better shape.
First of all, what is HRV? Every time your heart beats, there’s a pause. However, we want the timing of that pause to be different each time. The lower this variability, the worse shape we’re in. However, when this variability is high, it’s a good indicator that we’re in good shape.
In other words, if the intervals in between your heartbeats are constant or about normal, you have a low HRV. If the length of these pauses changes, you have a high HRV. Your HRV regulates your heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, and digestion.
How to track your heart rate variability
There’s no universal “healthy” standard you should reach for. Instead, you want to monitor your own heart rate and its trends. Do you notice a rather constant pause time? Or does it change? What do you notice when you’re stressed versus relaxed? What about when you’re sleeping versus wide awake or at the peak of your energy?
Some factors will affect your HRV, such as age, hormones, lifestyle, and even gender (women typically have a higher HRV than men). This is why it’s important to only compare your HRV to your own trends, not to that of the people around you.
You can spend money going in for HRV tests, where your doctor will hook some wires up to your chest and test your HRV, or you can buy a chest strap heart monitor and download an app to help you make sense of the data.
How to make sense of your HRV
There are 4 important characteristics of HRV:
- The higher the HRV, the better we can perform in physical activity.
- The higher the HRV, the better our body regenerates.
- The higher the HRV, the faster our body regulates.
- The higher the HRV, the better our body responds to stress.
Heart rate variability and cryotherapy
There have been multiple studies recently that have shown that cryotherapy can actually help increase your HRV. Every time you use the cryotherapy chamber, your HRV increases consistently over time, not just once. Whether you’re healthy or unhealthy, injured or in great shape, cryotherapy can help you change your HRV for the better. Handle stress better, feel better overall, and increase your health and wellness through achieving a higher HRV.
Our own Mark Murdock breaks this down a little more for you here:
Ready to test it out? Contact us.