In the fitness and performance space, inflammation has been the subject of increasing debate over the last 15 years. There is an entire movement dedicated to removing inflammation, with coaches, nutritionists and medics devising strategies to help active people reduce the amount of inflammation they experience. There are anti-inflammatory diets, anti-inflammatory medications and anti-inflammatory treatment protocols that have been used to varying degrees of success.

The problem with this approach is that not all inflammation is bad and by seeking to completely eradicate it we may lose some of its benefits.

In this article we’re going to look at the relationship between inflammation and pain in sport, assessing the good, the bad and the ugly when it comes to the complexities of the issue. We’ll go on to explain when inflammation is a good thing, when it’s a bad thing and how KYMIRA technology can help you manage the situation to your advantage.

Time to read: 5 minutes

Level: Intermediate

Key Points:

  • What is Inflammation?
  • What causes inflammation?
  • How KYMIRA technology helps to manage pain and inflammation
  • Practical applications of kYMIRA technology for inflammation management
  • Suggested KYMIRA products

In fitness and performance, inflammation has been the subject of debate for years. In this article we’re going to look at the relationship between inflammation and pain in sport and how KYMIRA technology can help you manage the situation to your advantage.

What is Inflammation?

Inflammation is a naturally-occurring in response to varying levels of trauma the body is experiencing. The best definition available in the scientific literature comes from the paper ‘Low-grade inflammation, diet composition and health: current research evidence and its translation’ [1] published in the British Journal of Nutrition…

In generic terms, inflammation is a local response to cellular injury that is marked by increased blood flow, capillary dilatation, leucocyte infiltration, and the localised production of a host of chemical mediators, which serves to initiate the elimination of toxic agents and the repair of damaged tissue.

Further explanations on the subject go on to explain the importance of inflammation and why we shouldn’t see it as a purely negative state. This point was made by the authors of the paper ‘Inflammatory responses and inflammation-associated diseases in organs’ [2] …

Usually, during acute inflammatory responses, cellular and molecular events and interactions efficiently minimize impending injury or infection. This mitigation process contributes to restoration of tissue homeostasis and resolution of the acute inflammation. However, uncontrolled acute inflammation may become chronic, contributing to a variety of chronic inflammatory diseases.

The consensus in the scientific literature is that whilst inflammation is a naturally occurring and generally positive process, if left unchecked it can be a sign of a deeper underlying problem and can itself progress into a much more significant issue.

What causes Inflammation?

The specific causes of inflammation are incredibly varied, but for the purposes of this article we’re interested in inflammation in a sporting and recovery sense. The most obvious cause of inflammation in a sporting context comes from acute injury that occurs during training or competition. In the case of joint and general bone injuries this inflammation can cause severe swelling at the injury site, affecting movement and healing.

From a muscle perspective, we know that different types of training produce inflammation to varying degrees, with high intensity eccentric training known to be a potential cause. Additionally there are stretch injuries than originate from an over-stretched muscle [3]. The underlying processes by which this particular inflammation occurs is different to other types and can sometimes be associated with further muscle damage, hence the reason sports injury specialists place a high degree of importance on reducing inflammation quickly post-injury.

A final and often under-appreciated form of inflammation associated with sport (in particular endurance sports) is the inflammatory responses to diseases and conditions in organs. A major one of note here is lung inflammation – research shows us that prevalence of asthma in endurance athletes is significantly higher than in general populations [4] and as such has to be treated with care and attention.

How KYMIRA Technology helps to manage pain and inflammation

In a sporting context management of inflammation is of the highest importance. If we reference a previous point in this article, secondary muscle damage can occur in injury sites by Lysosomal Proteases and Oxygen free radicals. By arresting this process medics can reduce the secondary muscle damage and reduce injury healing time.

The evidence base for the wide-ranging therapeutic benefits of infrared is well established and growing further, particularly as the mechanisms by which infrared works are becoming better understood. Among the numerous benefits associated with infrared, studies [5] have shown the following positive results in an inflammation and pain setting…

  • Reduced wound healing time
  • Reduced muscle-specific wound healing time
  • Prevention and reduction in DOMS
  • Reduced lung inflammation
  • Increased blood flow in injured connective tissues
  • Reduction in symptoms of arthritis

At a cellular level, as well as the stimulation of healing processes, infrared also acts on the intracellular fluid exchange, reducing swelling and inflammation that may not be necessary. Importantly though, infrared is proven to increase blood flow [6], which enables much of the healing to proceed as normal, without the superfluous inflammation around the injury site. 

From a practical standpoint, this means that athletic kit, rehab wear and potentially even medical equipment such as bandages etc made from infrared would stimulate healing and reduce inflammation quickly and effectively, meaning from the moment of injury the rehabilitation process would begin in earnest.

KYMIRA technology has practical, proven pain reduction properties. The infrared technology has mild analgesic effects without you having to take painkillers or anti-inflammatory medications. This has been discussed in further depth in our article on Athletes in Pain.

Practical Applications of KMIRA Technology for Inflammation Management

Much of the problem with medical grade external therapeutic measures is that they simply aren’t practical from a cost, convenience or portability standpoint. 

All of the KYMIRA technology is wearable, so rather than pay thousands for an infrared sauna you can only use at a given location, you can pay a fraction of the price and take your infrared technology with you anywhere in the world. You can wear it before, during and after training and competition and enjoy the benefits of infrared throughout.

You have no need to stay abreast of medical guidelines, you have no need to worry about side effects, you simply wear the garments and begin the recovery process immediately. KYMIRA technology is medically approved so you know we have passed the most rigorous testing protocols there are. It adheres to sporting guidelines and doesn’t compromise rules and regulations.

Our technology is worn and trusted by dozens of athletes competing in many sports at the highest level. On a wider scale, it is worn and trusted by thousands of customers both with sporting and medical requirements. 

Suggested KYMIRA Products

Recovery is most effective when it’s started as close after the event as possible and the infrared garment is in contact with the skin. With that in mind, we suggest the IR50 leggings and long sleeve tops as these are tight-fit and cover the entire body, so your recovery is comprehensive.

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September 17, 2020 — Stephen Hoyles

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