State-of-the-art treatments run hot and cold for athletes’ aches and pain at S. Tempe gym

Kevin Freeland, who owns Cryo Tempe in South Tempe, has added Red Light Therapy, infrared sauna, leg-compression sleeves and hydromassage beds to the cryotherapy chamber at his gym. –Photo by Andrew Lwowski for wranglernews.com

He started with a cryotherapy chamber, which cost nearly $5,000, and soon Kevin Freeland’s interest in other recovery methods for aches and pain at his South Tempe gym led him become the hub for local athletes, weekend warriors and even those who can’t run to the refrigerator but have pain from arthritis or medical conditions.

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Along the way, Freeland expanded Cryo Tempe to add leg-compression sleeves, Red Light Therapy, an infrared sauna and hydromassage beds.

Freeland opened Cryo Tempe, 8400 S. Kyrene Road, Suite 107 – just north of Warner, in May of 2019 after spending years in the training and recovery side of athletics. Cryo Tempe opened as the first South Tempe-West Chandler alternative recovery place and has since expanded its offerings.

Liquid nitrogen vapors waft as Judi Achore does a cryotherapy session at minus-220 degrees at Cryo Tempe. –Photo by Lee Shappell for wranglernews.com

Freeland began with the cryotherapy chamber and leg-compression sleeves before adding Red-Light Therapy, infrared sauna and hydro massage beds.

Cryo Tempe’s latest in restorative technologies help you heal faster, perform better and live life with less pain, inflammation and stress, Freeland says.

“More people are focused on more holistic ways to be healthy,” said Freeland, a West Chandler resident. “I’ve seen a lot of interest increase in all of these (recovery methods) because of that. The day I opened back up after the pandemic, I had a line of 20 people waiting to come in and business has done nothing but increase from that day forward.”

That hasn’t been the case for much of the past two years, although Freeland said that COVID-19 has produced some silver linings since he reopened.

Every week, Freeland sees about 85 clients for cryotherapy, the most popular treatment for aches and pains. The treatment consists of 3 minutes in a liquid-nitrogen-cooled chamber at negative 230 degrees Fahrenheit. The extreme cold triggers the body’s biochemical response to produce endorphins and promote healing.

Red Light Therapy, a relatively new technology that Freeland recently acquired, draws about 85 clients a week, he says.

His interest in alternative recovery methods led Freeland to research and invest in Red Light Therapy and infrared sauna.

“This room has five different wavelengths of light — three you can see in the 600-nanometer range, and two that are not visible at 810 and 850 (nanometers),” Freeland said. “Different wavelengths penetrate different distances into the body. Any cells they encounter spurs an accelerated recovery process. “During the course of your day, mitochondrial cells are damaged and cells die. Then your body will have to regenerate them. What they do is heal that damage so cells have a longer life span.”

Patients are set up in time slots, working their way up in 1-minute increments each session, starting at 5 minutes and progressing to a 10-minute maximum. Freeland experienced firsthand how effective Red Light Therapy could be.

“At 50 years old, I started wearing reading glasses,” he said. “I couldn’t see my phone. I couldn’t see my computer with glasses on. I got the Red Light Therapy in July of 2020. By January, 2021, when I was standing in front of my computer, I looked down and I was reading my computer screen and I went to adjust my glasses just out of habit, and I realized I didn’t have them on. My eyes got that much better in six months. I haven’t worn my glasses since.”

However, Red Light Therapy does require frequency, Freeland added. The sweet spot for Red Light Therapy is about three times per week but seven days a week would not bring any ill side effects, he says.

–Cryo Tempe graphic

Freeland also added an infrared sauna to his lineup, which operates at about 150 degrees Fahrenheit — about 50 degrees cooler than a traditional sauna. Freeland said that the lower temperature also helps patients feel relaxed and not so beat up afterward versus a session in a 200-degree sauna.

“What makes up for less heat is the infrared. It uses near infrared and what is called mid- and far-infrared, so the wavelengths change (from the Red Light Therapy),” he said. “You get the mitochondrial healing and you also get the detox effect. Studies show that people with regular sauna usage had 44 percent less risk of heart attack and stroke.”

The initial time period for the infrared sauna is 30 minutes. Clients can work their way up to 45 minutes.

The world of alternative recovery and healing is growing and Freeland is fully invested.

“The goal over the next four or five years is to turn this place into a recovery-based business,” Freeland said. “I’d like to get a hyperbaric oxygen chamber down the road, and some other things I have my eye on just to expand the recovery offerings.”

Cryo Tempe sees patients from various sports and backgrounds who do high-intensity training, from high school football and track athletes, to those in mixed martial arts and older patients with aches or medical conditions.

He sees many athletes from Chandler Hamilton High and hopes to build his clientele among athletes from Corona del Sol and Marcos de Niza, as well.

More information: cryotempe.com or 602-552-6714.

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