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Red and NIR Light Therapy in Fitness and Sports Recovery – 2021 Guide

The life of athletes and sports enthusiasts is very different from the general population; they have to train hard constantly to reach their best. Many hours of training are required in such cases, which involves a lot of hard work and dedication. Athletes who train for competitions have immense pressure to make sure their body is at its utmost peak for performance.

That not just leaves athletes tired and sore afterward but can also weaken or injure the tendons and ligaments due to excessive stretching. These injuries are unavoidable and often long-lasting, and the sheer pain that comes with them is torturous. These athletes often refrain from using painkillers.

Painkillers can negatively affect their performance and hence they cannot continue with the same zeal and enthusiasm as before.

There have been many sports enthusiasts who have been on the lookout for better options to make their workout journey smooth, which enhances their core strength and does not leave them in a lot of pain. For this purpose, many alternatives have been discussed and used over the years, including the use of different oils, medications, and topical anti-inflammatory creams. However, all of these solutions provide temporary relief, as their bodies remain damaged from within for a long time.

With the advancing age, science and technology have reached great heights. It has been discovered that something as simple as LED light therapy could bring all the desired effects that an athlete requires before and after any intense physical activity. The light waves used were not just any ordinary light waves. Instead, they belonged to a range of specific wavelengths; red and Near-infrared (NIR) light waves fall into that category. They are also referred to as Low Level Light Therapy (LLLT) devices due to their healing action inside the body.

There are many red light-emitting gadgets on the market; however, it is important that the product you choose is sourced from a supplier certified by CE/ FCC/ FDA/ ROHS to ensure its quality and safety. You can check out a huge list of such products at therapylights.com.au (TLA), an online store with the best quality products available.

Red and NIR light therapy’s role on the body of athletes and sport enthusiasts

img source: verywellfit.com

The way red and NIR light wave therapy works are by emitting photons (light units comprising waves of electromagnetic radiation)that penetrate deep into the layers of the skin. Here it modulates certain enzymes inside the cells, which speeds up generating energy in the form of ATP (or Adenosine triphosphate, the energy-carrying molecule found in cells) and NADPH (Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate; an essential electron carrier). These molecules are the actual currency of the cells; it is the excess of these energy molecules that reduces oxidative stress in the body. This process is called photobiomodulation (1).

Strengthens the connective tissues of the body

Red and NIR light therapy stimulates the cells to produce collagen; this makes the bones and tendons strong and strengthens the cartilages. Many micro-injuries happen inside the body that causes a lot of pain and inflammation. Benefits after just 20-30 minutes of red and NIR light therapy sessions can includetears due to sports injuries healing faster and increased muscle-building capacity.

Less fatigue after physical activity

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It becomes challenging for some people to continue with the same zeal and performance after a hard day at the gym because their bodies are sore. The pain and inflammation are due to all the muscle fiber’s enhanced demand for oxygen. When these fibers do not get oxygen, they undergo the process of anaerobic respiration. This type of respiration is mainly lactic acid that accumulates in the body and causes pain and that feeling of sore muscles. That lactic acid needs to get washed out from the body, which can only happen if there’s adequate oxygenation of the tissues.

With the help of the red and NIR light therapy waves, certain biomodulators get released that induce new blood vessels that oxygenate that area. That is how red and NIR light therapy radiations work by helping the growth of the muscle fibers and decreasing oxidative stress in the body.

With the help of red and NIR light therapy, the recovery time needed for athletes and all fitness buffs decreases significantly. With all the time saved, they hardly ever have to miss their planned workout regime and perform even better the next day after a strenuous physical activity session(2).

Athletes can choose to use a LED red and NIR light therapy pad or panel to help them feel better after a long day. These products can all be ordered online through trusted stores of red and NIR light therapy gadgets such as therapylights.com.au.

Enhanced physical performance

img source: trainingpeaks.com

After red and NIR light therapy sessions, the body gets filled with energizers that help with endurance training. Research has shown that it increases speed and strength and overall improves that individual’s athletic record. All of this owes to the growth of healthy muscle fibers, faster healing abilities, and feeling full of energy.

A study published in 2016 reviewed many trials and case-control studies to demonstrate the efficacy of red and NIR light wave therapy. Good quality LED emitting red, and NIR light waves were subjected to the upper and lower limb muscles. Candidates enrolled in the study showed improved performance, with excellent rates of recovery after strenuous exercises(3).

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