Jurgen Van den Broeck – 4th place Tour de France 2012 Talks about his Infrared Sauna

Here is what Jurgen Van den Broeck, number 4 in the Tour de France 2012 has to say about his infrared sauna:

HM: Jurgen, what is the secret to becoming a good Tour de France rider?

JVDB: I would say it is recuperation. In the Tour de France, you wonder everyday how you will make it to the end. Every day is a race  in itself and the speed is much higher than in other stage races. At the finish you are exhausted but the next morning you need to have recovered. This is crucial, regardless of whether you are aiming for a stage win or the general classification.

HM: Is recuperation something that can be improved through training?

JVDB: Yes, definitely. If you train hard and the good form is there, you recuperate well. But it always helps if you can give nature a helping hand. I have been counting on the positive effects of infrared therapy for many years now.

HM: Does it make you ride faster?

JVDB: No, it does not do that. But it does help my body to get rid of lactic acid and repairs the muscle tissue of small tears and damage that are created during an intensive training session. Because of this, it will take my body less time to be ready for the next training. And, more importantly, you will be able to handle that next training better. Thanks to my infrared therapy I can train more often and more efficient. And the more efficient my training, the better my results.

HM: Yes, and those results seem to improve every year. Fifth place in 2010, (out in the 9th stage together with Wiggins and Vinoukourov due to a nasty fall in 2011) and 4th place in 2012. Do you use your infrared cabin the whole year round?

JVDB: Mostly in winter and spring. In the winter we create the foundation by doing a lot of extensive training. In early spring we interval train and I do a lot of climbing during this period. These months are crucial, if everything goes according to plan during this time of the year, my mind is at ease and I go to the Tour with a lot of confidence. I really obsess during this period. Every detail counts for me. I am not gifted with a massive talent like Armstrong or Pantani so I  have to make sure that everything is right. Every percentage point counts for me. That is why, during this period, I use my infrared sauna every day, during the Tour itself it is hard for me to use it daily. I would love to, but you just do not get the time.

HM: Would it be useful during the actual competition as well?

JVDB: Definitely. Even more so because you are on the bike for 5 or 6 hours every day. Your shoulders, neck, back and legs hurt. An hour in my infrared cabin would get rid of most of this. The infrared therapy helps with the recovery. It gets rid of that pain in muscles and joints. Also after a crash or other types of injury, the infrared therapy will speed up the recovery process. And in the mad circus that the Tour de France is, it would be great to be able to hide away in my sauna and relax for an hour.

HM: Thanks Jurgen, and we wish you all the best for next year’s tour de France, hopefully you will make the top 3.

JVDB: That is what we are aiming for.


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