MMA fighter Conor McGregor has been sharing regular updates about his recovery since breaking his leg during his rematch against Dustin Poirier at UFC 264. In one of his most recent posts, McGregor revealed that he is back training on an exercise bike, less than 6 weeks after undergoing surgery to insert an intramedullary rod into his tibia.

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Athletes love a good wellness trend. Anything that promises to boost performance or give the slightest edge to anyone competing at the highest level of their sport is going to find the ears of elite athletes and Olympians — even (or especially) if it looks like a torture device.

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WHAT DO OLYMPIANS, Navy SEALs, and many women over the age of 55 all have in common? They’ve embraced a new kind of physical therapy and training method called blood flow restriction (BFR).

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Hot Bod” is an exploration of fitness culture and its adjacent oddities.

So much is restricted at the Olympics this year: crowd numbers, fornication, a baseline level of humanist morality. And also, fascinatingly, the blood flow of participating athletes.

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A newly popular and physically uncomfortable training technique being used by some competitors at the Olympics has experts torn on its benefits and risks.

Athletes at Tokyo 2020 — like Americans Kayla Miracle, a wrestler, and Michael Andrew, a swimmer — have been seen on social media and in the practice pool restricting blood flow to certain limbs with tourniquets.

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Blood flow restriction training is a hot fitness trend at the Tokyo Games. While there’s evidence it may be effective, experts say the trend may not be ready for prime time for the home athlete just yet. Top athletes have repeatedly introduced the world to new training and recovery strategies — with the Olympics being one of the biggest platforms on which to do so. In 2016 in Rio, we learned about cupping. In 2012 in London, we learned about kinesio tape.

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In addition to limiting blood flow in order to strengthen muscles and speed healing, some Olympians, athletes, and surgery and physical therapy patients have restricted their blood flow as method of strengthening muscles and speeding recovery.

 

 

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(CNN)Restricting your blood flow sounds like a dangerous thing to do, but it’s exactly what some Olympians, athletes, and surgery and physical therapy patients have done to strengthen their muscles and speed up recovery.

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Some athletes in Tokyo are indulging in a trendy technique to enhance the effects of training and stimulate recovery. Credit a Japanese former power lifter.

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Blood flow restriction training may sound like some kind of kinky bedroom activity. (Hey, I’m a fitness and sex writer. My mind goes there.) But this on-the-rise lifting technique, sometimes called occlusion training or abbreviated as BFR, is actually a G-rated method that athletes use to get stronger muscles, faster—without using ultra-heavy weights.

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Did you know that under a certified skilled provider, blood flow restriction therapy (BFR) is easy to use, hard to misuse, safe and BetterFor Results compared to current standards of care? A previous blog post discussed some of the amazing benefits of incorporating blood flow restriction therapy into a rehabilitation program.

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