Intermittent Hypoxic Training (IHT/IHE)
Hypoxico’s Intermittent Hypoxic Training Package is the newest of the altitude training protocols and has become widely used for health and wellness purposes. It involves short intermittent inhalations (3-5 minutes) of hypoxic air (9-10% O2, 21000ft/6400m) interspersed with inhalations of ambient air (2-5 minutes).
These cycles, also know as Intermittent Hypoxic Exposure (IHE), create extreme hypoxia and hypercapnia (increased C02 levels) actually recreate a natural physiological training mechanism that occurs in all mammalian embryonic development for building of anti-oxidative defense (protection from Free Radicals). This defense helps newborns fight the initial oxidative stress of hyperoxia at birth and can help grown individuals fight unavoidable oxidative stress associated with everyday life. In turn one can slow the process of aging, prevent chronic and degenerative illnesses (Alzheimer’s, diabetes,cancer) and promote overall health, wellness and rejuvenation. Although strongly geared towards wellness, IHT is actually a very universal training protocol and will prove valuable in any altitude training program.
Intermittent Hypoxic Therapy with Spinal Cord Injury Patients
Emory University researchers are now using Hypoxico technology to stimulate nerve regeneration and rehabilitate Spinal Cord Injury Patients (SCI). The results of this experiment were quite promising for patients with incomplete spinal cord injuries. After only a five day intervention, subjects saw enormous improvement in their ability to walk while their walking endurance was also greatly enhanced. Much like the athletes we work with, patients with spinal cord injury saw “a greater capacity to tolerate fatigue” after the treatment. This is a great example of how Hypoxico technology has been used to make medical break throughs and revolutionize traditional rehabilitative practices.
Intermittent Hypoxic Training for Deconditioned Athletes
Players sometimes struggle to find form and are not always in peak condition. Domestic and international competition seasons are long and tough and it’s important the players can sustain the demands placed upon them throughout the whole season. Often in pre-season players may turn up under the misguided notion that they will be able to ‘play themselves into shape’ but this approach just doesn’t cut it in modern sport. One approach that is often taken when faced with an unfit player is run additional conditioning sessions. This simply compounds the problem and adds additional loading onto an already deconditioned body – a recipe for injury! Using hypoxic sessions allows support staff to speed up the deconditioned players return to ‘match fitness’ while also being able to work at lower training loads and volumes. For the first time there is an intervention that can have a significant impact on deconditioned players fitness within a short period of time (2-4 weeks) without exposing them to increased training volumes.
At the same time, within any squad, there will always be players that get limited minutes. For these so called “bench warmers” it’s crucial that their fitness is maintained so that when they are called on to perform they are able to do so. Supplementing training during heavy competition periods with hypoxic sessions reduces the effect of detraining due to sitting on the bench. The use of IHT is an effective method of maintaining the fitness levels of these players during heavy competition periods.
In short, passive IHT sessions will help with the following:
- Prevention/alleviation of chronic and degenerative illnesses.
(Alzheimer’s, diabetes, cancer)
- Increased walking speed and endurance for patients with incomplete spinal cord injuries.
- Slowing of the aging process.
- Promotion of overall health, wellness and rejuvenation.
- Decreased deconditioning of injured or substitute athletes.
*IHT should always be performed under doctor or medical professional supervision.