It has been a common practice for many years to use cold therapy for injured joints and muscles. There is new research that shows applying ice to an injury may slow down the healing process. Localized increased blood flow and inflammation is the body’s natural response to an injury. Inflammatory cells release hormones and other mediators to help with tissue healing. Ice application impedes circulation to an injured area, thus slowing down the recovery process. The latest research recommends only an initial protocol of short duration applications of ice, mainly to help with minimizing the pain. Depending on the injury and specific situation, recovery may be expedited with movement versus rest and ice. If you do sustain an injury, always consult a health care professional as this is a very general guideline.