At a Glance:
Address: 351 N. La Cienega Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90048
Length: 1.5-3 minutes
Price: 1 session/$65, 10 sessions/$450, month unlimited/$299
Sweat scale: LOW
Since moving to LA one year ago I have tried things that I didn’t even know existed. I’ve splurged on $12 smoothies at Beaming, climbed a stationary Versa climber as lights pulsed overhead at Rise Nation, and vibrated on a Power Plate at Xcceleration Station. However, nothing could prepare me for this adventure. Let’s just say there was absolutely no sweat involved.
I’ve been hearing about Cryotherapy for a bit now. McCall, a Sweat and Repeat contributor, has checked it out a few times and there are always celebs posting pics. When I got an email from Xtend Barre with a deal for a free Cryo session if you mentioned their name, I knew I had to jump on it. At $65 a session, it’s definitely not something in my budget!
Cryotherapy is a form of treatment that uses cold temperatures to relieve muscle and joint pain, increase energy, reduce stress, and help with various skin conditions. I’ve been having some trouble with my wrist so I decided what better time to give it a try.
I called ahead to make an appointment but was told to just come in and they would take me then. I was headed to TRX at Aura Yoga and couldn’t decide whether or not to come before or after. Emilia at the front desk said that if I came before I would have a lot of energy for class and if I went after it would help with recovery. I decided recovery was more important.
After TRX, I drove over and parked at a meter out front but there is a parking lot behind the office. I checked in and completed a waiver on an iPad. Once I had signed the waiver, Emilia took my blood pressure. After I was cleared to participate, I headed into a changing room where I put on a robe and knee-high socks—I left only my underwear on. Before entering the chamber, I was given a facemask, earmuffs, clogs, and gloves to wear. The girl in charge of the chamber gave me some instructions and had me pick a song that I wanted to hear while I was inside.
There are two sides of the cryotherapy chamber. I stepped in the first one and closed the door behind me. It was cold and I took off my robe and hung it up before I opened the door to the main chamber. The main chamber was obviously FREEZING…literally negative 235 degrees. It was really hard to see and a bit difficult to breathe since I felt like I was going to have a panic attack (I feel this way during spray tans too…small room + hard to see/breathe = personal nightmare). I covered my mouth with my hands, closed my eyes, and focused on breathing in through my nose and out through my mouth as the song “Talking Body” sang out over the speakers—one of my current faves. Every 20 seconds a voice would say how much time was left.
The first minute went by rather quickly but the last 35 seconds were pretty brutal as my body finally realized what was happening and I started shivering. Although it didn’t feel great, it also wasn’t as painful as I expected. The voice counted down from five and I was free to break out. On the other side, I put on my robe and stepped out of the cold. For the first couple minutes my skin felt a burning sensation and was, of course, really cold to touch.
While my wrist doesn’t feel much different, I did have a ton of energy for the rest of the day. I headed to Sweetgreen to meet up with a friend over salads and lemonade and felt high on life. Is this a direct result of the cryotherapy? Who knows. Whether or not the freezing chamber helped my body recover, it was still a really cool experience that I would recommend. Would I spend $65 to do it again? No, but definitely check it out if you’re in the area and don’t forget to use Xtend Barre as a reference!! On a side note, the office is right next to Soda Pop’s, which has great sandwiches!
Tricks of the Trade
- Keep your eyes open, you’ll most likely see a celeb here.
- Cryohealthcare runs groupons from time to time.
- If you have a fear of being stuck in a freezer, they have a machine that provides the same therapy but you get to keep your head out.
- They are only open from 10am-6pm Monday through Saturday and 12pm-5pm on Sundays. I went at 1:15 on a Monday and, since there is only one chamber, there were people who had to wait a bit. It’s such a short session that you shouldn’t ever have to wait too long.