Fulham Football Club will be the first elite sports club in the world to adopt a tailored approach to cryotherapy treatment for both pre-game preparation and post-game recovery.
The English Football League (EFL) Championship club, which has been trialling cryotherapy over the last three seasons, has received expert training to adopt PolarFit® Care, the world’s first and only fully customised Whole Body Cryotherapy system, developed by world-leading industrial gas company Air Products and sports scientists ProCcare.
Fulham has already seen positive results including a reduction in player muscle soreness and reduced injury time as a result of its existing approach to cryotherapy. It expects to bolster these results still further by applying the individually tailored and bespoke approach afforded by PolarFit® Care.
Chris Hanson, Head of First Team Physiotherapy at Fulham FC, said: “We tailor most aspects of the players’ schedules, from training to therapy and even diet, based on things like body type, age and position in the team.
“Any treatment that can be intelligently applied based on the needs of an individual player is bound to increase its effectiveness.
“It only makes sense that a more tailored approach will improve the already positive results of cryotherapy treatment.
“We’ve been really impressed by the PolarFit® Care offer and are excited by the potential to boost recovery and performance to the next level.”
The software, developed by Air Products in collaboration with ProCcare, pulls data from nearly 1,000 peer-reviewed papers on cryotherapy, cold water emersion and local cold therapy to deliver tailored programmes to improve the recovery time, injury prevention, metabolism and even sleep of each individual player.
The Fulham physiotherapy team received an intensive, 10 hour training day in Amsterdam to understand the evidence-based methodology and clinical rationale of PolarFit® Care, as well as the practicalities of applying it for both pre-game stimulation and post-game recovery. The club expects to fully implement the new system next season.
Martin O’Connell at Air Products, added: “Tailored cryotherapy should give Fulham an edge next season and in elite sport, an edge is everything.
“Whole Body Cryotherapy is gaining in popularity as a treatment but most clubs and athletes take a ‘one size fits all’ approach to its use.
“We know that individuals respond differently to Whole Body Cryotherapy depending on their physical and genetic make-up, so PolarFit® Care represents a huge opportunity for forward looking clubs.”
The PolarFit® Care treatment package is new to the UK market, following extensive testing in The Netherlands, and emphasises the benefits of a safe and tailored approach.
All PolarFit® Care cryotherapy vessels use indirect whole body cryotherapy. This is the safest kind of cryotherapy on the market, ensuring the nitrogen used to cool the chamber never comes into contact with the athlete’s body.