Sunday, October 1, 2023

KAATSU Aqua: Performance, Recovery, Rehabilitation, Longevity in the Water

KAATSU Aqua is a specialized form of KAATSU used in the water to enhance:

* performance of speed, strength, stamina, balance, agility, technique, tactile feel
* recovery from vigorous workouts, intense competition, travel fatigue
* rehabilitation from muscle, bone, ligament, tendon injuries
* longevity and wellness

KAATSU Aqua can be performed in various locations:

* competitive swimming pools
* aqua therapy pools
* lakeside
* seaside

KAATSU Aqua can be performed while:

* swimming horizontally in the water, doing butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle, combat stroke, or sidestroke while fully submerged
* treading water (e.g., eggbeatering)
* walking, stretching, jogging vertically in the water while not fully submerged
* using swimming or rehabilitation equipment (e.g., hand paddles, fins, kickboards, noodles, floating gear, stretch cords)
* practicing racing starts or (flip) turns
* passing, shooting, blocking (water polo) balls
* performing strength-training or core-strengthening drills (e.g., with Bosu Balls)

The KAATSU AirBands are made of neoprene and are waterproof. However, the controller units for the KAATSU Cycle 2.0, KAATSU C3, KAATSU B1, and KAATSU B2 models are not waterproof and should not be submerged in the water.

KAATSU Aqua can be used to improve/enhance:

* upper body
* lower body
* core
* lower back

KAATSU Aqua can be used by people who are water-safe:

* of all age
* of any ability
* of any walk of life

KAATSU Aqua should always be used in conjunction with the KAATSU Cycle mode. That is, do 3-6 KAATSU Cycle sets, starting at Low Pressure level, prior to starting KAATSU Aqua. KAATSU Aqua, by necessity, is always used in the KAATSU Constant mode. This means that KAATSU Aqua should be used for a maximum of 10 minutes on the arms and 10 minutes on the legs at any given time. The 10 minutes on the arms and 10 minutes on the legs can be performed consecutively and can be repeated if two KAATSU sessions are conducted within one 24-hour period.

It is important to understand the following:

* The KAATSU Cycle mode induces lower pain and less fatigue levels compared to the KAATSU Constant mode.
* The KAATSU Cycle mode enhances the cognitive responses at a greater extent than the KAATSU Constant mode.
* The KAATSU Cycle mode and the KAATSU Constant mode induce similarly advantageous lactate responses as a result of limb movement.
* The KAATSU Cycle mode can help mitigate the effects of flight dysrhythmia (i.e., jet lag) when used before, during, and after a long-distance air flight.

The KAATSU AirBands and KAATSU Aqua Bands should always only be placed on two locations on the body:

* Upper arm: above the biceps, above the triceps, near the armpit, below the deltoids
* Lower leg: above the quadriceps, above the hamstrings, high up on the groin at an angle along the swimsuit line

KAATSU Aqua Bands are designed to engorge the limbs (arms or legs) in blood due to the modification of venous flow (i.e., flow of blood from the limbs back to the torso). When performed properly and safely, the following phenomenon occur: * the skin color turns pink, rosy, or occasionally a beefy red color in some very fit individuals
* a dissention (visual "popping out") of the veins
* a rapid increase in lactate in the working muscles

KAATSU Aqua equipment is not meant to do the following. If these phenomenon occur, the KAATSU Aqua Bands should be immediately removed:

* the skin color turns blue, gray, or white (that indicates a lack of blood flow to the limbs)
* lightheadedness
* uncomfortable feelings or sensations

Do's and Don'ts

* always be well hydrated before and during your KAATSU session.
* always start with your arm bands, and then finish with your leg bands.
* always start on Low Pressure setting.
* you can increase from Low Pressure to Medium Pressure and from Medium Pressure to High Pressure, if your Capillary Refill Time (CRT) is fast (e.g., 1-2 seconds).
* to check your CRT on your arms, firmly press your thumb into your palm. Your skin will temporarily go white. If your skin returns to normal (i.e., the blood returns to your surface capillaries), within 1-2 seconds, you can increase the pressure settings from Low to Medium (or from Medium to High).
* to check your CRT on your legs, firmly press your thumb into your thigh or your calf. Your skin will temporarily go white.
* if your skin returns to normal (i.e., the blood returns to your surface capillaries), within 2-3 seconds, you can increase the pressure settings from Low to Medium or from Medium to High.
* you can do KAATSU sessions 1-3 times per day, but only do KAATSU once per day during the first 1-2 weeks.
* each KAATSU session can include sets on your arms, and then on your legs.
* you can do up to 6 KAATSU Cycle sets on your arms, and then up to 6 KAATSU Cycle sets on your legs, during each KAATSU session. But in the beginning, it is best to do only 1-3 Cycle sets until your body adapts to KAATSU.

* immediately remove your bands if your skin color turns blue, gray or white.
* immediately remove your bands if you feel uncomfortable in any way.
* immediately remove your bands if you feel lightheaded in any way.

The KAATSU Mechanism

* KAATSU Cycle sets lead to a robust hormonal response. This includes Human Growth Hormone and various other molecules from IGF-1 to beta-endorphins.
* KAATSU Cycle sets also lead to an increase in BDNF and alpha waves in the brain.
* KAATSU Cycle sets also lead to a decrease in CRP (C-reactive protein) which is a blood test marker for inflammation in the body. That is, CRP levels increase in response to inflammation. If the inflammation is reduced in the body, users can experience relief from their arthritic pain or tendinitis.
* the decrease in CRP is accompanied by the production of EPC (endothelial progenitor cell). EPC are cells that help regenerate the endothelial lining of your blood vessels (VEGF), bringing additional benefits. Vascular endothelial cells form the innermost layer of our blood vessels. These vascular endothelial cells produce nitric oxide which help keep our blood vessels pliable and elastic as well as regulate the inflammatory cells in the blood vessel walls.
* KAATSU Cycle sets also lead to an increase in nitric oxide.

Body weight KAATSU & Single-limb KAATSU

* while you can sit in a relaxed state and do KAATSU 3-point exercises (i.e., opening and closing of your hand, unweighted bicep curls, tricep extensions on your arms or heel raises, standing leg curls, non-stop quarter squats for your legs), you can also do simple KAATSU Walking while in the KAATSU Cycle mode. There is no need to do a power walk or to walk quickly. A calm, gentle stroll is sufficient.
* during your evening KAATSU session, you can try using the single-limb KAATSU mode where you only apply an AirBand to the limb where the pain is greatest (e.g., right arm or left leg if pain is an issue). Use the single-limb plug on the other side or just do not put on the AirBand on the other arm.
* daily or twice-daily use of the KAATSU Cycle mode while doing body weight exercises will help increase muscle mass and tone while increasing energy consumption that will ultimately reduce body fat percentage.
* KAATSU Walking is the most optimal body weight exercise with the KAATSU AirBands on.
* as the vascular tissue engorges with blood in either the arms or legs, the vascular walls increase in elasticity with every heartbeat. When the three walls of the blood vessels increase (due to this engorgement of blood), this phenomena requires energy consumption (and requires a caloric burn). So KAATSU Walking burns more calories than regular walking and helps increase our metabolism, especially as we age.
* it is important (optimal) to not eat 90 minutes after doing the KAATSU Walking or KAATSU exercise. During this 90-minute period, the increased elasticity of the vascular walls remains and therefore with every heartbeat, there remains an increased caloric burn. Therefore, it is best to not eat during this period when your body is burning more calories.

For water polo players, there are a variety of exercises that can be performed with the KAATSU AirBands on either your arms or legs in order to:

* improve shooting speed
* improve passing accuracy
* get accustomed to handling the ball with your off hand (non-dominant hand)
* improve your eggbeater (for height, speed, and strength)
* sprinting speed
* stamina

For detailed protocols and applications of KAATSU Aqua, you can visit the KAATSU Aqua Education Program that is posted on the website.

Copyright © 2014 - 2023 by KAATSU Global