We bring the mountain to you

Athletic Business, December 1997 - "Thin is In"
World-class athletes' use of oxygen-depleted air for training has a long history, with some athletes moving to high elevations to train, some wearing respiratory masks and others sleeping in hypobaric chambers (See "Nature Adores a Vacuum," July 1994, p. 70). Now, Hypoxico Inc. ("We Bring the Mountain to You") has created the Hypoxic Room SystemTM, an oxygen-depleted environment that comes as either a one- or two-user softwall enclosure or can be installed in an existing toom. HRS, which can be purchased or leased, simulates an elevation of 8,000 feet, but maintains the air pressure and humidity level of the surrounding environment. For more information, contact Hypoxico Inc., 50 Lexington Ave., Suite 249, New York, NY 10025, 212/726-3654.

Bicycling,  March 1997 - "Waiting to Exhale"
Altitude training has long been recognized as a way for cyclists to improve their aerobic capacity and endurance. That's why Tony Rominger and other European pros have held spring-training camps in Colorado and why our 1984 Olympic team became so preoccupied with blood doping.

It works, packing the circulatory system with a multitude of oxygen-ferrying red blood cells. Now, a health club in New York City called Crunch is making altitude training accessible to those of us marooned at sea level. It has the world's first hypoxic training room--a 9-foot-square vinyl cubicle containing about 5% less oxygen than normal (15.5% compared to 20.9%). This makes it atmospherically equivalent to being atop a 9,000-foot mountain.

Experts at Crunch claim that by exercising inside this unit for 25 to 30 minutes a day over the course of 10 days, you'll increase your body's ability to utilize oxygen and, thereby, improve your performance.

We rode a LifeCycle for 15 minutes inside this chamber and definitely felt the shortage of oxygen. In fact, the experience was just like cycling at altitude... Joe Kita

DETAILS, January 1997 - "HIGH ENERGY"
Your gym may have more rooms to breathe easier in the near future. New York City's Crunch Fitness now has an exercise room that simulates altitude conditions of nine thousand feet. While working a treadmill or stationary bike inside the Hypoxic Room, your body is limited to oxygen levels of 13 to 16 percent, compared to about 21 percent at sea level forcing you to use oxygen more efficiently. Crunch trainer David Jordan suggests you start by training in the room in fiveminute intervals.

ELLE, December 1996 - "High-altitude training--at sea level"
It's no accident that the U.S. Olympic Training Center is in Colorado Springs, 6,035 feet above sea level, or that many top athletes train at even higher elevations: Training under hypoxic conditions --where less-than-usual levels of oxygen are available--builds strength and increases cardiovascular endurance. Now, Crunch Fitness club, smack-dab in the middle of New York City (elevation: fifty-five feet above sea level), claims to offer the world's only hypoxic training room...the room is said to provide the benefits of high-altitude training without the 9,000 foot climb or the loss of barometric pressure which can cause headaches and nausea).

"Working out at a high altitude stimulates production of red blood cells--which carry oxygen to muscles. Just being in in it makes your ventilation pick up," says trainer, biathlete and elite cyclist David Jordan, who uses the chamber to train clients---and himself. Indeed, just sitting in it made me out of breath Jordan intersperses five minutes of training (on a bike or treadmill) in the chamber with five minutes of training outside the chamber: he repeats the intervals for a total of twenty minutes, three times a week. While the five minutes in the chamber were challenging, I did feel increased energy once outside. I also got a head rush--a Rocky Mountain High at sea level.

FIT MAGAZINE, July/August 1997 -  "Crunch NEW YORK CITY and LOS ANGELES "
Is your cardio workout giving you enough of a challenge?

Would you like to up the ante, increase the intensity, burn more calories, maybe shave whole minutes off your running time? Step into Crunch's Hypoxic Room (shown above), an oxygen-controlled space that decreases the oxygen level at sea level (which most of us enjoy) by six percent, which mimics the air at 9,000 feet. That's why Crunch is calling it "high-altitude training." "It increases the number of red-blood cells, which makes the body work harder," says Dayna Crawford, press rep.

"One half-hour on the treadmill in the Hypoxic Room is equivalent to an hour on the treadmill outside the room. It's a New Yorker's dream."

FITNESS December 1996 - "FITBUZZ - Room To Breathe"
Skiers often complain of fatigue during their first few runs on a sky-scraping mountain. The reason: their bodies are working extra hard to acclimate to the diminished oxygen at high altitudes. To help you build up strength and stamina before you leave for your next high-peaks ski trip, engineers have developed the first and only hypoxic room in the U.S. at the Crunch health club in New York City.

This 9' x 9', oxygen-depleted, vinyl room simulates the air of a 9,000-foot mountain. Even non-skiers are lining up to try it, since exercising on a treadmill, or cycling machine inside the room increases cardiovascular strength and endurance.

Fitness Product News, September/October 1997 - "Low-Oxygen Workouts"
The Hypoxic Room System provides a low-oxygen workout environment under normal atmospheric conditions. The one-or-two user soft wall enclosure can be installed in any existing room or enclosure and equipped with the operator's choice of machines. By working out in a low-oxygen room, pulmonary ventilation and the production of red blood cells are increased.

The intermittent hypoxia provided gradually adapts the body to perform in a low-oxygen environment to allow the body to perform substantially better in a normal oxygen environment.

Under oxygen deficiency, the body will also dissociate more fat chemically to produce energy. Capillaries will also increase in size in specific muscles being exercised, which then deliver more oxygen and energy substrates to needed areas. The room always remains at the same air pressure and humidity level for a comfortable workout. High-altitude athletes mountain-climbers, skydivers, etc. can acclimatize their bodies to low-oxygen climates beforehand, maximizing their time at high altitudes.

FORBES, December 2, 1996
POPPING UP IN GYMS nationwide is something called the Hypoxic Room, a $32,000, 8-by-8-by-

7-foot plastic chamber in which the oxygen level is just 15%--a level you'd find at 9,000 feet above sea level. According to Nicholas Ohotin, a vice president of Hypoxico Inc., this machine will give you a 30 minute workout in just 15 minutes.

Better yet, says he, the Hypoxic Room can improve your fitness without a stick of exercise. All that's needed is to sit in the chamber. "We can set it up in your bedroom," offers Ohotin...

GQ, March 1997 - "Room With A Whew!"
Remember when Michael Jackson was rumored to be sleeping in a space chamber to keep himself forever young? Well, you don't have to marry Elvis' daughter to enjoy the benefits of the Hypoxic Room, a nine-by-nine-foot vinyl-walled chamber at Crunch Fitness in New York City that simulates the air...at 10,000 feet by decreasing the air's oxygen content. The intended effect is to increase your number of oxygen-carrying red blood cells and force you to work harder at working out thus raising your endurance level under circumstances not reminiscent of The Boy in the Plastic Bubble. Top athletes have trained in thin air since the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City, when competitors from the lowlands noticed a decline in their performance... Maybe the Hypoxic Room will take your breath away, too. Nichelle Gainer

Gulliver, 1997
As usual in Los Angeles, at 8000 Sunset Boulevard, at the end of January, the gym chain Crunch inaugurated a new club: costing many millions of dollars (in the area of three billion lire), the principal attraction is the Hypoxic Room System: a little room where the conditions of high altitude are recreated and includes a stationary bike. The lack of oxygen increases the agony, because it results in the increases the capacity of pulmonary ventilation and hemoglobin in your blood. Moreover, due to specific chemical conditions reproduced in this space, the undesirable air pressure found at high elevations is avoided...

Peak Experience, February 1997  - "Breath easier on high.."
Headed for some high-altitude skiing, or training for a tough race? Check out the...Hypoxic Room System, a...workout "cage" that simulates the atmosphere at 9,000 feet. Used at Crunch Fitness in New York City (and coming soon to a gym near you), the chamber increases stamina because the thinner air forces heart and lungs to work harder. Caution: Don't go longer than ten minutes to start.

MEN'S FITNESS, February 1997- "Have the Mountain come to you"
In the past, if you wanted to train at high altitudes, you had to go the mountain. Now, in the absence of a mountain, there's the Crunch fitness club in Manhattan. The world's first Hypoxic Room, a nine-by-nine-foot vinyl chamber, houses an environment with 15 percent oxygen, simulating the air you breathe at 9,000 feet above sea level the elevation of many ski resorts. The difference is, there's no ozone or other oxidizing agents that reduce the benefits of high-altitude training. Using a stationary bike or treadmill in the room is intended to train your body to perform well under hypoxic conditions, which in turn can help you perform better in a normal environment. NBA and NFL trainers have displayed interest.

Men's Health, June 1997 - "Low-oxygen Training."
Can you build a stronger heart out of thin air?

To replicate the pulse-pounding, lung-searing effects of high-altitude exercise, New York's Crunch fitness club is offering the world's first hypoxic (low-oxygen) training room. The oxygen content within this vinyl cell has been cut to about 15 percent (normal sea level is around 21 percent). The result is an artificial atmosphere that makes your lungs feel as if they're on top of a 9,000-foot mountain. And you don't even have to pay the air fare to Denver.

We sent senior writer Joe Kita to pedal a stationary bike inside this room for 15 minutes, and he definitely felt the shortage of oxygen. Even at a moderate pedaling cadence, his well-trained heart was pounding and he couldn't maintain a conversation...

Men's Journal, February 1997 - "Peak Fitness - High-Alpine Training in the Gym"
It's every flatlander's quandary: To ski, snowboard, climb, bike, or bike in the mountains, you need a day or two to adjust to the altitude, but who has the time? Last fall, New York City's Crunch Fitness club introduced a solution: the world's first Hypoxic Room System. The 8-foot-by-8-foot vinyl-walled enclosure simulates conditions at 9,000 feet, where the oxygen density is 15 percent, compared with 20 percent at sea level ("hypoxic" means "low oxygen"). With a treadmill and a stationary bike inside, you can train above the tree line ahead of time.

A suitcase-sized filter skims a preset amount of oxygen from the air outside the chamber, then pumps the thinned-out vapor into the bubble. After several sessions of 10 to 30 minutes each, depending on your fitness level, your red-blood-cell count starts to jump and the capillaries in your lungs and muscles expand to deliver O2 more efficiently. "When you hit the mountains, you'll be ready to go full-bore," says Crunch trainer David Jordan. "No altitude sickness, no holding back." The system also benefits those who never leave sea level. In mid-September, Jordan, an amateur competitive cyclist, had his VO2 mas, a gauge of the body's ability to utilize oxygen during strenuous exercise, measured at 68. After six weeks of training for at least 20 minutes a day in the HRS, it improved to 71, a significant jump. "The room cut my training time in half," he says.

Crunch has installed hypoxic rooms in two of tits New York gyms and one in Los Angeles. The chambers should start springing up in other health clubs around the country soon, now that Crunch's exclusivity agreement with Hypoxico, the company behind the HRS, has expired. David Willey

METROSPORTS, October 1996 - "Sweat Band/All The News That's Fit"
Once again, CRUNCH is on the cutting edge of fitness technology. At the uptown location on the West Side, CRUNCH is introducing Hypoxic Training. What is it? Hypoxic Training is a method of physical development involving the inhalation of oxygen-depleted air during physical activity. Basically, high-altitude running in the gym.

The oxygen-depleted environment in the Hypoxic Room System (HRS) is the same you would feel at an elevation of 9,000 feet, such as in the Rockies or the Sierra Mountains. The HRS however, eliminates the unhealthy air components at those altitudes. Another big advantage of the HRS is that it retains the comfortable atmospheric pressure and humidity of the training facility, eliminating air-pressure change problems.

Simply by entering the HRS, you begin exercising your cardio-pulmonary system. No more than five minutes for beginners in the chamber as the HRS doubles the stress on your cardio-vascular system. Once adjusted to the HRS, you will find your workouts to be extremely more efficient and your ,stamina and progress to reach heights that you never dreamed possible.

All-Natural Muscular Development, July 1997 - "Training With An Altitude"
A TRENDY MANHATTAN HEALTH CLUB, Crunch Fitness, is now offering training for skiers (and vacationers who suffer from altitude sickness) in their "hypoxic room"--a workout room that simulates the air at 9,000 feet (USA Today, January 29, 1997). The concept is simple. The vinylenclosed 8-by-8-foot room, outfitted with a treadmill and bicycle, is pumped full of air containing 15% oxygen, compared with 21% at sea level (that's about the same as Aspen, Colorado). Crunch Vice President SARAH DENT says skiers would need to work out in the room about every other day for three weeks to prepare for a mountain trip. Working out in such a room will help people use oxygen more efficiently which is a trick boxers have used for years in preparation for a fight. 

The chain will open a second hypoxic room in Los Angeles early this year and is considering them for gyms planned in Chicago and San Francisco.

NEWSWEEK, October 28, 1996 - "INTO THIN AIR"
Why go all the way to Colorado for high-altitude training when you could just go the gym? So ask the trendsetters at Manhattan's Crunch fitness club, home of the world's first "Hypoxic Room." Air inside the 9-by-9-foot chamber is filtered to provide just 15 percent oxygen the same gasp-inducing proportion found at 9,000 feet. Hanging out inside the chamber is a workout in itself, so sessions on the enclosed bike and treadmill quickly increase cardiofitness. Inventors at Hypoxico Inc. in New York City have already been approached by NFL and NBA teams. Says one VP, "We're even adapting a trailer for a racehorse."

New York Magazine, September 9, 1996 -"The Arms and Legs Race"
...Crunch...has also refurbished its location...adding bells and whistles like the nation's first hypoxic room, a...closet in which a low-oxygen mix simulates the altitude of Aspen, Colorado all in the interest of thinner thighs...

New York Magazine, January 20, 1997 
On our way past the selectorized machines the weight machines made by Icarian and others for every muscle in your body we pass a strange-looking plastic-encased area known as the Hypoxic Training Room, where you can do the treadmill or the bike in an oxygen-depleted environment. "It's like how Olympic athletes train, by going into areas with high altitudes," [Crunch VP Roger] Harvey explains. I ask who uses it. Harvey looks inside, where a very sweaty man with a protruding belly is on the treadmill. "This guy, I don't know, but he doesn't look like a professional athlete," Harvey says, "Anyone can use it!"

The New York Times Magazine May 25, 1997 - "Exercise Fireman's Fun"
...To condition his body to do more with the decreased amount of oxygen firemen get from their tanks, [Eric Torres] trains inside Crunch's "Hypoxic Chamber," a 9-by-9-foot...box set to simulate the oxygen-thin atmosphere at 7,000 feet...

Out Magazine, November 1997 - "Breathless"
High-altitude training comes to a gym near you.

Looking for a quick way to upgrade your vanilla workout? Simply change your altitude.

Hop on a bike in a hypoxic room, a.k.a. the "punishment chamber," where the 15 percent oxygen content compared with the usual 21 percent at sea level will give you the exertion equivalent of a ride through 10,000-foot-high mountains. "I tell people if they don't do their workouts, we'll put them in there," says Bryant Denson, with a laugh, at New York's Crunch Fitness. The chamber gives conditioned athletes a competitive edge and prepares skiers who want to adapt to high altitudes before a trip. The low level of oxygen causes capillaries in the lungs and muscles to expand and, over time, deliver oxygen more efficiently.

Look for hypoxic rooms at Crunch in L.A., and at gyms in Ohio, New Jersey, Connecticut and Texas. Melissa Murphy

Outside Magazine, November 1997 - "Trends - Oxygen Who Needs It?"
Sure, you could pull up your sea-level stakes and head to Boulder in search of that edge from altitude training. Or you could cruise down to Crunch Fitness in New York or Los Angeles and take a jog at 9,000 feet. The long line at Crunch and several other similarly fad-happy clubs these days isn't so much for the vaunted StairMaster, but for a turn on a treadmill enshrouded by an assemblage of clear walls. Step through a curtain of vinyl flaps not unlike your average shower-curtain liner and you've entered a hypoxic room, an eight-by-eight chamber pumped full of oxygen-deprived air (call 917-770-6059 for a chamber near you). But because that air is maintained at ambient pressure, an athlete experiences all the aerobic joys of high-altitude training with none of the irksome side-effects such as dehydration, headaches and wooziness.

Whether you're training for the Leadville Trail 100 or prepping for a ski holiday in Summit County, working out in hypoxic conditions will assuredly help you acclimatize. But can weekly gasping sessions yield the same benefits as living high, which actually causes the cardiovascular system to increase its capacity to transport oxygen? "We don't even understand the benefits of real altitude training," says Jack Daniels, running coach at the State University of New York in Cortland, and an expert in the effects of altitude on athletes. "But people figure anything that hurts must be good for them and working out at 9,000 feet certainly hurts." Laura Hilgers

PLAYBOY, January 1998 - "THE AIR UP THERE"
On the heels of the oxygen-bar craze comes another breathing device. The Hypoxic Room System is a transparent chamber that simulates a "mountain" atmosphere at a 9000-foot altitude. The air is low in oxygen and filtered to minimize dust and bacteria.

Work out in this chamber and Hypoxico says you'll increase your endurance by 40 percent and burn more calories in less time than a normal workout takes. If you would rather snooze than sweat, try Hypoxico's "bed tent" which surrounds you with clean, thin air, making you stronger while you sleep. Sound too good to be true? Some people think the chambers are as useful as Mir, but regular users swear by them. To find out for yourself, look for the chambers in health clubs such as Crunch Fitness in New York and Los Angeles.

VOGUE, November 1996 - "Breathless"
Athletes use altitude training to prepare for important competitions. Working out at a high altitude forces the body to adjust: The number of red blood cells in the system increase, which gets more oxygen into the bloodstream. But mile-high training means traveling to far-flung mountains for weeks at a time. Now Crunch has introduced a hypoxic chamber for athletes who want to get the benefits of altitude training without leaving the gym. Atmospheric controls bring oxygen levels in the chamber down to those of a high-altitude location like Aspen. For more information, call Crunch at (212) 875-1902.

Self Magazine, February 1997 - "The Rockies at Sea Level"
For years, the athletic elite have increased their aerobic capacity by training at high altitude. Now regular folk and flatlanders can live the fitness high life. Hypoxic training rooms insulated chambers that simulate the...air found at 9,000 feet above sea level are popping up in health clubs, private homes and pro team training rooms nationwide.

SHAPE, June 1997 - "What's new, what's hot"
Think your workouts are too easy? Crunch fitness centers in new York City and Los Angeles have a way to make you breathe even harder altitude training. Crunch is the first gym in the United States to install hypoxic, or low-oxygen, training rooms. These 9-foot-by-9-foot vinyl chambers maintain oxygen at 15 percent, equivalent to being at 9,000-feet elevation. Training under such conditions has been shown to increase the body's oxygen-delivery system by stimulating the production of red blood cells and strengthening the heart and lungs...
 

Ski Life,  February 1997 -  "The Mountains of Manhattan"
There are two ways to exercise at altitude in New York City. You can run up the stairs of the 110-story World Trade Center, which will put you at an elevation roughly equal to New Jersey's Hidden Valley (1,400 feet). Or you can approximate Aspen's Rocky Mountain high (9,000 feet) by working out in what's being called the world's first health club hypoxic chamber. (Hypoxia: a decrease in the oxygen supplied to the blood.)

The Hypoxic Room System is at Manhattan's Crunch Fitness, one in a chain of trendy gyms inNew York City and Los Angeles. Air with oxygen levels of 11 to 16 percent (compared to 21 percent at sea level) is pumped into a...9-foot-by-9-foot chamber. Inside, you can work out on a treadmill and a stationary bike, both equipped with heart-rate monitors. The concept: Simulate high altitude where the cardiovascular system adapts to thin air by more efficiently utilizing the scarce oxygen. This workout boosts athletic performance both at high elevations and sea level.

Of course, most elite athletes prefer to train at altitude in someplace larger than a...cube say, mile-high Boulder, Colo. But for flatlanders, Crunch claims that 20 to 30 days of hypoxic training will yield positive results, whether you're bashing the bumps on a ski vacation or jogging in Central Park. For skiers, this also presents a new way to prevent altitude sickness by allowing for acclimation to thin air before arriving slopeside. The chamber may physiologically put you on the mountaintop, but for those jaw-dropping alpine views, you'll still have to travel.

SKIING Magazine November 1996 - "Thinning Air Altitude Adjustment"
The symptoms are all too familiar dizziness, racing heart, shortness of breath. Is it love? No, altitude sickness.

Crunch, a New York health club, is touting a new way to kee the thin-air blues at bay what they call "the world's first hypoxic room" "We've filtered ten percent of the oxygen from the room's air, so that it simulates a 9,000foot elevation," explains Crunch's Sarah Dent.

The "room" is actually a nine-foot-by-nine-foot clear vinyl box, just large enough to hold a stationary bike and a treedmill. Unlike the mountains, the chamber's temperature, humidity and air pressure remain at Manhattan's levels, although ozone is filtered out.

For the first month, aspiring highlanders just limit each sessoin to a half-cozen, five-minute intervals alternated with rest. After that, most folks can such the thin wind to their lungs' content...Mitch Kaplan

Snow Country, December 1996 - "Altitude in a Box"
Some competitive athletes get an edge by training at altitude to improve endurance. Now recreational athletes can get that same advantage without a trip to high country. The Aspen Hypoxic Room System is a chamber with...walls big enough to fit workout equipment. It's filled with air containing 15 percent oxygen, the level found at altitudes of 9,000 feet, such as in Aspen (at sea level, the air is 21 percent oxygen). At the lower concentration, the heart and lungs must work harder to get the available oxygen to the hard-working muscles. As a result, the cardiovascular system becomes more efficient. The chamber is a boon for skiers who want to prep their lungs before a trip to avoid altitude sickness and improve performance. Watch for them in...health clubs soon.

Swing, March 1997 - "The Air Up There"
Athletes from around the country flock to the mountains of Colorado to inhale the thin air and increase their aerobic capacity. Imagine if you could travel only a few blocks to the local gym for the same heady experience. Well, now you can provided you live near the Crunch studio at 1109 Second Avenue in Manhattan. A 15-minute workout in the Hypoxic Room a chamber filled with air that's only 15 percent oxygen (compared to 21 percent at sea level) is roughly equivalent to a 30-minute workout outside...

VOGUE, November 1996 - "Breathless"
Athletes use altitude training to prepare for important competitions. Working out at a high altitude forces the body to adjust: The number of red blood cells in the system increase, which gets more oxygen into the bloodstream. But mile-high training means traveling to far-flung mountains for weeks at a time. Now Crunch has introduced a hypoxic chamber for athletes who want to get the benefits of altitude training without leaving the gym. Atmospheric controls bring oxygen levels in the chamber down to those of a high-altitude location like Aspen. For more information, call Crunch at (212) 875-1902.

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