We’ve heard about some of the extreme lengths athletes will go to to edge out their competition. Famously, 28-time Olympic medalist Michael Phelps sleeps in a hyperbaric chamber when training. This helps to aid his recovery and to adapt to altitude. He’s also been known to pack away 12,000 calories a day to keep his body primed for performance. And while not all athletes go to such extreme lengths, most are seeking natural ways to improve their performance.
Enter halotherapy—an athlete’s best friend. Halo-therapy is a natural, alternative form of medicine wherein people can derive health benefits from breathing in microscopic salt crystals. Lung function and capacity are both crucial to so many sports. So, it’s no wonder that many players are looking to halotherapy, which can boost their performance and stamina. After all, spending time in a salt cave can be highly therapeutic. Furthermore, it can also cleanse and clarify the body. This is beneficial for athletes and non-athletes alike.
The unique microclimate found in salt caves provides a 100% drug free, safe environment. So those who partake in halo-therapy can get a wide range of benefits. Ever better, they get none of the harmful side effects that might ban them from sports.
Here are three ways halotherapy can benefit athletes:
Improve breathing and lung function
The inside of a salt cave is rich in micronutrients. These are pumped through the air by way of a halogenerator. The minuscule atomized salt particles contain rich negative ions, which are breathed into the lungs. These particles can help eliminate toxins from the lungs, enabling you to breathe more deeply and clearly. Exogenous toxins (those external toxins which could include everything from environmental pollution, to consumer products and chemicals) and endogenous toxins (those which are internally produced and naturally occurring, such as lactic acid) are expelled during halotherapy. Expelling these toxins can benefit not just athletes, but all people who wish to breathe more deeply and clearly.
For those with athletic pursuits, time in the salt cave can improve breathing function. Stamina can also be improved, allowing athletes to push the limits of their sport even further. Doing this also lets them outlast their competitors. This factor is especially important for runners or cyclists who rely on stamina to get them through long-distances courses.
Enhance mental focus
Even if an athlete is in peak physical condition, a clear and focused mental state is imperative to bringing home a win. Athletic greats from Arthur Ashe to Kobe Bryant have been known to use meditation to improve their focus. And salt rooms offering halotherapy can provide the perfect space for meditation. Deep breathing is enhanced through salt therapy’s unique ability to clear the bronchial pathways. Furthermore, a focus on mindful breathing triggers a neurological reaction, which sharpens the body’s response. Even better, attention span increases, reaction times improve and cognition is enhanced. All of this is critical to keeping an athlete at the top of their game.
Salt caves have been known to benefit those suffering from respiratory conditions, allergies and airway congestion. The nutrient-dense, microscopic salt has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and anti-fungal properties. This can help clear unwanted bacteria from the respiratory system. Halotherapy can banish mucus and obstruction from the lungs, reducing inflammation in the body. This can help improve the health of people who are are feeling a bit under the weather. Furthermore, it’s great for athletes who’ve repeatedly pushed themselves too far. How? It can result in increased energy, improved sleep and faster recovery time for athletes.
With so many benefits, it’s no wonder that halo-therapy is beloved by athletes and armchair athletes alike.