“The authors found that CWIc can have a beneficial effect on HRVr and MP in comparison to CWIs. Although, no differences were observed on the HRV post-exercise between CWI groups, suggesting that CWI may have a limited effect on HRV. Interestingly, no differences were observed for MP between CWIs or CWIc and AR. Changes in muscle temperature are associated to differences in the environmental temperature (i.e. water) and duration of exposure. As individuals using the CWIc protocol in comparison to the CWIs protocol were exposed to lower temperatures (12°C vs 15°C, respectively) and longer durations (13.0 ± 2.7 min vs 10 min, respectively), it is expected that muscle temperatures were also decreased to a greater extent. Nevertheless, if objective measures of muscle temperature were collected, it would aid to understand the observed beneficial effects of CWIc in comparison to CWIs in MP.
Although the observed effects on CWIc are a consequence of the lower temperatures and longer durations, it would be interesting if one of the CWI variables, such as temperature or duration was controlled between CWI groups. Furthermore, understanding the effects of CWIc on greater levels of fatigue (i.e. rugby match) would likely lead to a more pronounced effect of the customisation of CWI protocol.
From a personal perspective, I had the chance to try the software used to individualise the CWI protocols (ProCcare) and itis great as it offers the possibility to generate an individualise a CWI protocol by entering basic body composition measures such as body weight, height and fat mass, but also allows you to enter more complex measures such as skin area.
As mentioned in the Performance Digest issue #15, from an applied stand point, a coach or practitioner can divide the squad in two or more groups, e.g. a high and a lowfat group, and create different CWI protocols, e.g. 8 min in the CWI bin for the low-fat group and 12 min in the bin for the high-fat group. This allows for a more individualised approach to the recovery process.”