KINGSTON:Coaches of student athletes participating in the Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship are happy that their contestants are enjoying the cool benefits of on-the-ground cold therapy, courtesy of Pure National Ice, one of the partners in the series of youth-development meets across the country.This new ice bath facility, known as the Pure National Ice Cold Therapy Zone, is expected to improve the overall performance of the athletes, especially those who perform in multiple events.”Having this cold therapy treatment here at the meets is a brilliant idea, especially since a lot of the athletes have to perform in multiple events on the same day or even in the same week,” said Leroy Gray, strength and conditioning coach at Racers Track Club and one of the coaches of the Kingston College (KC) track and field team.”This increased level of activity causes the build-up of a lot of lactic acid in their bodies, and the cold therapy is just one of the ways that we can help to remedy that.”Gray added: “I have no doubt that this cold therapy is going to help foster an overall improvement in the performance of the student athletes as it will replenish and recondition their muscles following an event, making them much lighter and re-energised for any subsequent events.”Patrick Johnson, one of the coaches at Excelsior High School, shared similar sentiments.”Today, one of my athletes made a big personal record in the 1500m,” he said at the Youngster Goldsmith track meet. “In order for him to repeat this kind of performance today, or even later this week, he needs this kind of therapy. The same can be said for other students who run the 400-metre final and also have to run the 4×4 relay.”Johnson also commended the sponsors, Pure National Ice and Digicel, saying: “A lot of us as coaches don’t have the means to provide this kind of therapy for our athletes while they are at school, much less while they are at these meets performing. This is quite an upgrade for a lot of them, and I must thank the sponsors for providing this facility at the meets and improving the overall quality of the experience for the students.””The Digicel Grand Prix gave us the opportunity to play a part in supporting sports development in Jamaica and preparing our young athletes for the world stage,” said David Walton, sales and marketing manager at Pure National Ice.”We know that many schools don’t have the capacity to provide this kind of therapy for their students, so we felt the development meets would be an ideal environment to expose them to the benefits of this. We consulted with a number of coaches and sports medicine experts and they all agree that having this type of therapy available on the ground would be highly beneficial to muscle recovery and performance of the athletes.”The Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship began on February 6 with the Western Championship at the Catherine Hall Sports Complex in Montego Bay and the Youngster Goldsmith Meet at the National Stadium. The series will culminate at the G.C. Foster Classics slated for February 20.The events include 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, long jump, high jump, discus and the 4x400m relays. The public is invited to log on to www.digicelgrandprix.com to keep abreast of the latest news.The Digicel Grand Prix Athletics Championship is sponsored by Sportsmax, Gatorade, Pure National Ice, Honey Bun, and Logo Stitch.