Can you believe that not too long ago they considered banning red light therapy from sport because of the profound benefits it had on athletic performance?
Yes, this is not an exaggeration. You can read this clinical study which emphasizes just how potent the effects of red light therapy are.
So.. what is Red Light Therapy?
Red light therapy is a form of photobiomodulation or a treatment that uses light-emitting diodes (LED) or low level laser therapy to stimulate cellular activity to achieve therapeutic benefits.
How Does Red Light Therapy Work?
Red Light Therapy is a safe, non-invasive treatment during which natural red light penetrates the skin and the cells.
- Once it reaches the mitochondria, it stimulates the production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP), your body’s natural energy currency.
- Muscle cells have more mitochondria than other types of cells, since they require more energy to function. This is why they are particularly receptive to red light therapy. Increased ATP synthesis leads to optimal functioning within the muscle cell. This in turn leads to better fitness and athletic performance.
- Red light therapy also acts on fat cells, allowing them to release lipids into the bloodstream. Some of this fat is then picked up by muscle cells to be used as energy. RLT treatment also reduces inflammation by increasing blood flow and by supercharging your body’s antioxidant response.
The term ‘optimizing performance’ has been around for a long while in the sports world. It’s the ultimate goal for all, but only a handful have managed to discover the right tools to achieve peak performance and recovery.
So considering all the information and techniques available today, how do you choose the best and safest ones? You turn to one place; Kala Red Light Therapy. In this blog, we will walk you through everything you need to know about red light therapy for increased athletic performance.
Why Athletes Choose Kala Red Light Therapy
Over 100+ professional athletes across all different sport backgrounds choose Kala Therapy for recovery. The Essence of success in the league is having your players healthy. Red light therapy is a huge part of that.Kala Red Light is proven to:
- Reduce inflammation and swelling
- Heal muscle, joint, ligaments and connective tissue injuries
- Improve muscle strength and endurance
- Alleviate stiffness
- Promote circulation
- Non-invasive, convenient recovery procedure
- Red/NIR combo penetrates deep to the bones
- Kala Pulse Recovery Mode ideal for athletes recovery
Why Choose Light Therapy for Increased Sports Performance?
Before we get into the details of why you should choose red light therapy, let’s clear the air - light therapy is not a hoax. With thousands of proven clinical studies, the effectiveness of red light therapy has never been more evidential.
This may sound too good to be true, but light therapy has been around since the 1860's and since then, has produced considerable results in treating several health concerns.
Here are some interesting non-biased results of a clinical study that reviewed several placebo-controlled trials in 2016:
- A significant increase in speed, endurance, and max repetitions of athletes.
- Increased time before exhaustion.
- Improved muscular performance and rapid recovery rate when the subjects were exposed to the red light before exercising.
In simple terms, red light therapy works by reducing muscle fatigue, boosting endurance, and treating injuries rapidly. The best part, however, is that red light therapy does not have any adverse side effects.
Kala’s Red Light devices are clinically proven to be effective and designed to aid in healing, recovery, muscle and joint pain and much more.
What Are the Benefits of Red Light Therapy for Athletes?Here are some ways red light therapy helps athletes reach their peak performance:
1. Boosts Muscle Recovery
If there is one thing that is worse than burnout for athletes, it’s muscle soreness and inflammation. Most of the time it is inevitable, and not just pushes you off the track for days and weeks but can also lead to injuries if you attempt to work your way through it.
While traditional medicines mainly focus on treating pain, red light therapy works its magic by healing the body at a cellular level. It offers pain relief and supports muscle, bone, as well as connective tissue recovery.
Red light therapy is also a proven solution to aches and pains. Fun fact - Red light therapy works by triggering a biological process like photosynthesis in plants. Reminds you of middle school science? Same concept!
2. Reduces Muscle Fatigue
Ever wondered why the tenth repetition is harder than the first? Because of muscle fatigue. When you start exercising, your muscles feel resilient but after a while of repeating the movements, they begin to feel weaker. This eventually causes the performance to drop.
Red light therapy reduces muscle fatigue by increasing the production of ATP in mitochondria, which enhances energy levels. It also decreases the production of lactic acid in the body, which reduces the burning sensation in muscles while exercising. The result? Increased performance times before exhaustion.
3. Increases Strength and Endurance.
We all have days where we just don’t want to...well, stop. We feel incredibly motivated, and wish that we could continue exercising as much as we can. It brings a certain sense of satisfaction, doesn’t it?
The good news is that Kala red light therapy can help you achieve your goals faster.
A 2016 study showed that light therapy enhances strength gains when performed before exercise. Another study concluded that men exposed to red light were the only ones showing enhanced muscle performance in the group. Not just this, but red light therapy has also proved to enhance performance levels in hand and grip exercises.
Furthermore, numerous studies have shown that red light therapy helps the body work out with a lower oxygen deficit.
Let’s have a look at how red light therapy affects endurance with an example.
In 2018, Brazilian researchers conducted a placebo-controlled study to test the effectiveness of red light therapy on professional soccer players. Prior to matches, players received red light therapy. Surprisingly, it was found out that players who received the therapy were able to stay on the field for longer periods. In conclusion, this study found that pre-exercise therapy enhances performance and accelerates recovery players.
Should You Use Red Light Therapy Before or After the Exercise?
Now that we have gone through some of the benefits of red light therapy, let us surprise you with another.
You can use red light therapy both before and after exercising. Science has suggested it doesn’t make a difference when red light therapy is used, as long as you are consistent with your sessions you can expect to see amazing results. Kala Red light therapy can be used before or after physical activity and provides amazing therapeutic benefits.
As we discussed above, red light therapy boosts performance levels and enhances endurance when performed before exercising. However, it is equally beneficial after you wrap up your exercise because of its healing properties. Kala red light therapy will reduce muscle soreness and inflammation to ensure that you are in the best shape for the next big challenge.
How Do You Use Red Light Therapy?
Skin-health and surface treatments need much lower doses than deep tissues, muscle, joints, ligaments and bone health. Due to the high powered irradiance and advanced red (850nm) and Infrared (660nm) wavelengths, our devices treat surface level and deep penetration at the same time. With a 1:1 blend, all Kala devices deliver effective wavelengths of light that your body can absorb.
Kala suggests you remove clothing and apply the light to the desired regions - direct to skin. For instance, if you are experiencing back pain, we suggest you take off any clothing and have the light directed towards your back.
The NIR lights on your device are invisible to the human eye - so rest assured all your lights are functioning and working properly even if you do not see them light up. We suggest consistent treatments of 10 minutes per day.
For deeper issues (e.g. muscle, bone, brain, organs, glands, fat, etc.), optimal treatment times are:
- 2-7 minutes per area (if the light is 6" inches away)
- 5-10 minutes per area (if the light is 12" inches away)
What is the position should when using your Kala device?
You can sit, stand or lay down. Whatever is the most comfortable position for you to treat the desired targeted area of your body! You should be comfortable as your body soaks in the rays of healthy, therapeutic red light. Depending on what part of your body you're treating, you may find different positions more comfortable than others.
Our Kala Red Light Pro and Elite devices both come with a door hanging kit. If you choose to use that, then you'll be standing (or sitting in a chair) next to the device. Many people do it this way. The Kala Red Light Mini is perfect for targeted sessions and on-the-go treatments.
Shining Light on What Works
Kala red light therapy is Canada’s best red light therapy company and was designed to optimize health and wellness on a cellular level.
With over 100+ professional athletes using Kala red light therapy, they have seen incredible health benefits for recovery, injuries and muscle and joint pain. You can also recover like a professional with your own Kala red light device. Our devices are designed to provide therapeutic sessions from the convenience of your own home.
Kala Red Light Therapy is used by over 5+ professional sports teams and has helped thousands of our Kala Family weekend warriors as well. Whether you are looking to recover from an injury, reduce inflammation within your body, or just get back to feeling your best with an energy boost, Kala red light has you covered.
With 1 in every 3 Americans suffering from muscle and joint pain, red light therapy is a non-invasive, safe, effective treatment.
We hope this blog shined some light on red light therapy and provided you with the answers you were looking for. Like all athletes, you too want the edge to step up your game! Get your hands on Kala Red Light and let your performance do the talking.
We have a wide range of products that are designed keeping the goals of athletes in mind. The best part is that we also offer portable red lights! Kala Red Light devices offer you support and therapeutic benefits from the convenience of your home. Apart from the incredible athletic performance benefits mentioned above, red light therapy has several other uses, but let’s leave that for another day.
Landon and Cameron, the founders of Kala Red Light Therapy, come from a professional hockey background and landed on red light therapy as they sought out unconventional ways to improve their recovery, health and ultimately performance. After 2 years and countless hours, they engineered and designed high-quality, medical-grade devices that would ACTUALLY make a difference. Recover like a pro with a Kala Red Light device.