The Ice Myth

If you are continuing to ice an injury, you are doing the wrong thing.

According to my doubles partner this week (and in Ft. Myers), Dr. Michael Fenster, who taught physiology at University of North Carolina and International College (Naples), “You should ice a pulled muscle or inflamed tendon right after playing; but then you should switch to using heat.”

The good doctor explains that ice is used to reduce swelling at the injured site; but then you want to use heat to increase the blood flow in the area to take away “the bad stuff” (must be medical jargon!).

And if you do not have a heating pad to use, here is another technique… Wet a wash cloth and zap it in the microwave for about 20-25 seconds. Careful to not get it to hot and burn your skin. And place that on your injury.

He also recommends the use of anti-inflammatories taken right away with food – but not too many for too long.

Feel well and play well.

The matches were all completed yesterday at the World Tennis Club in Naples. Here are the highlights (that also go to the Naples Daily News): Area players winning in singles were: 55s: Larry Turville; 60s Andy Bloom (Bonita Beach); 70s: Fred Drilling (Estero); 70s consol: Gary Englehard (Bonita Beach). In the doubles, 60s: Michael Barnes (Ft. Myers)/Philip Landauer (Naples) d. Howie Ames (Bonita Springs)/Steve Shreiner (Ft. Myers); 60s consol: Jeff Boston (Sanibel)/Tom Haas (WI); 65s: Frank Bova (Naples)/Mike Dahm (Naples) d. Don Keenan (Naples)/Rick Wright (Naples); 70s: Fred Drilling (Estero)/Clive Kileff (TN); 70s consol: John Swan (Naples)/Ted Underwood (MA); 75s: (2) Santiago Benites (VA)/ Dick Crawford (St. Petersburg) d. Dan Kennedy (Bonita Springs)/ Omer Menard (MA).
For complete results and scores, click HERE.

For a preview of matches coming this week at Sterling Oaks (the dubs draws are now posted), click HERE

And from Larry Turville: “A little update on the University Park Cat II. Draws of 32 and 64 will start on Monday and doubles & consolation will start following day. Naturally if you have a bye, it’s a day later. Finals will be on Friday or Saturday depending on draw size. Sunday is rain day. Consolation will only be first match consolation. It’s should be a great tournament as always. Sign up by Tuesday 6pm.” For the link, click HERE

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2 thoughts on “The Ice Myth

  1. Clarification: don’t switch to heat too fast! Ice for 24 hours intermittently. Then heat for muscles. Would not heat an injured joint, really. And if, upon reusing the affected part it gets swollen and painful again, ice it again. (ER DOC)

  2. ER Doc,

    Would you use heat on the joint during recovery stage?
    I’ve found that heat on my ankle which I broke five months ago gives it relief. More oxygen possibly?


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