Attention endurance athletes! A new study suggests post-workout hot tubbing could boost performance

January 15, 2019

January 15th, 2019 –  If you’re an endurance athlete looking to get the edge when the heat is on, it looks like hot tubbing post-workout might be the secret.

The results of a study conducted by the Extremes Research Group at Bangor University in Wales was recently published by Frontiers of Physiology. The goal was to determine the benefits of hot water immersion after completing periods of physical activity in the heat.

In 2015, the Research Group had participants in a study required to run on a treadmill for 40 minutes in 91-degree heat (!). After the run, they then soaked for another additional 40 minutes in 104-degree hot water, or for as long as they could tolerate. (If their core temperature reached 104 prior to 40 minutes, they wrapped up their soak.) This was the regimen for each participant for six days. At the end of the study, it was clear that the body’s response to exercise in heat improved.

In the latest study, 16 participants with two different exercise regimens were recruited: eight endurance athletes who averaged nine hours of training weekly, and an additional eight who completed three hours of endurance training in the same period. It was clear at the end of the study that the addition of hot water soaking after a workout improved the endurance of the group during their physical activity, allowing them to stay cooler during a run. This could be that edge you’re looking for to breeze past your competition!

As always, check with your doctor before considering incorporation of anything like this into your workout or endurance training. But if they give you the green light, you could be crossing the finish line sooner and cooler! Plus…you’ll get to treat yourself to that victory soak in the hot tub afterwards! What could be better?