Estonian biohacker Siim Land is an author, public speaker, high performance coach, and content creator who has a popular podcast about optimizing health, performance, longevity, and well-being with many different biohacking techniques.
Land’s latest podcast is Slow Down Aging and Build Muscle With Kaatsu Training that can be heard here with KAATSU Global executives Steven Munatones and John Doolittle, a retired Navy SEAL Captain.
Check out and order a KAATSU support system and keep in the fight.
So after spending the career in the navy, my body’s kind of broken down so that another benefit of this type of exercise is I don’t go to the gym anymore. I don’t push big weights at a gym. I have some elastic bands I have TRX and I have the KAATSU Cycle 2.0, which is our small new device. And it just runs in the cycle mode. That device is 30 seconds on and 5 seconds off. And each time it releases the pressure, it’ll come up a little higher in pressure. And so what I’ll do is I’ll put those bands on. I’ll put the TRX bands hanging from a tree in the backyard, and I’ll just do some, all kinds of movements with TRX bands or any kind of exercise movement that in the past I might have used a lot of weight with, and now I use basically no weight or a very light resistance.
And gone are the days of you know that feeling when you go to the gym and you do you do chest and you go hard and then your chest is basically done for the next two or three days, right? Or if you do something where you have a chronic injury or some pain or some kind of orthopedic issue that you’ve been dealing with for years, I mean, that’s me.
So every time I go to the gym and push weight, I’m basically down for a matter of days. So with KAATSU, I don’t do any of that. I just use this cycle mode, that pressure on pressure off, a little more pressure on, pressure off. And it all happens automatically in the background while I do just very, very simple exercise movement.
Statements made in this podcast have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease for more information about KAATSU and KAATSU products. Visit KAATSUglobal.com. That’s K-A-A-T-S-U global.com.
Even if you do absolutely no functional movement in your just laying there, it’s almost like you’re exercising from the inside out because every time a blood vessel expands and contracts, expands and contracts. Your mind interprets that as some form of exercise. And reacts accordingly. So even if you’re not doing a lifting movement or a workout movement, there’s still all kinds of benefits to the passive aspect of it.
Do you want to know what it is? Body-mind empowerment. Get stronger, faster, smarter, quicker, friendlier, more helpful, more driven. Everything the body needs. Control your mind. Welcome to the Body Mind Empowerment podcast I’m your host Siim Land and today we have two guests from KAATSU Global, Steven Munatones and John Doolittle. KAATSU is a form of blood flow moderation training that can mimic heavy weightlifting with lighter loads, is the most researched and most advanced form of blood flow restriction training in the world. And it’s amazing.
It’s especially useful for promoting recovery, treating certain injuries as well as just slowing down aging if you want to get yourself the KAATSU bands and you can use the code Siim for a 10% discount at KAATSUglobal.com. But on that, let’s begin with the show. Yeah, before we get on to the topics, why don’t you why don’t you guys give us maybe a brief introduction about you guys as well and can I let the listener know which one is which. With your voices? Okay. John, why don’t you go first? And then I’ll go second. Okay.
Hello, everyone. My name is John Doolittle. I was introduced to KAATSU about four years ago while I was active duty in the U.S. Navy. I spent a career working in the SEAL teams and I got hurt like a lot of guys do.
On a pretty regular basis, and my last rehab guys used the physical therapist use KAATSU on me. And it was the same injury I had had when I was 6 years younger. It was a torn rotator cuff that they repaired. And I was pretty blown away by how quickly my rehab was. It was basically half the time from the same injuries when I was 6 years younger. So they definitely had my attention. The job I was working at was in U.S. Special Operations Command. There’s a human performance program, and I was overseeing that program. And so a lot of the athletic trainers and physical therapists, I worked with them. And that’s how I got introduced to KAATSU, and basically fell in love with the capability and the protocols. It was more on the rehab side for me. Yeah.
And what about Steven? And myself, I was introduced to KAATSU and the inventor of KAATSU, Doctor Sato. In Tokyo, in 2001. At the time, I was a volunteer coach with the USA national swim team.
And I had seen athletes in Japan use KAATSU and I didn’t know what it was. And they introduced me to Doctor Sato. And when I when Doctor Sato first used KAATSU on me, I asked him two simple questions. I said, “why isn’t this why isn’t KAATSU known around the world? And what can we do to introduce it to the world?” And he said, “Well, I don’t travel outside of Japan. And I don’t speak English”. And so we decided then that we should form a partnership and start introducing KAATSU to the rest of the world. But it took me 13 years to understand everything that Doctor Sato was doing.
He invited me to Japan four times a year, and I saw him utilize KAATSU in hospitals with sumo wrestlers, with professional athletes, with golfers, with old people, with people who were comatose people ,who were bedridden. People up to the age of a 104. And all this time, he was explaining in Japanese, and I was documenting everything in English. And when that entire mentorship, that training program was over, both he and I decided that we had enough information about KAATSU in order to properly introduce it to the rest of the world. And we started in 2014. So that was my experience and introduction to KAATSU.
So it looks like both of you had firsthand experience and then you just got more into it. But maybe what is KAATSU in general? How do you define it? And such? Yes. There are several steps to, this is Steve. The several steps to KAATSU. The first step is to put pneumatic bands on your arms or your legs. And then when you do that, you actually engorge your limb with blood. So many people see KAATSU air bands on our arms and legs for the first time. And they assume incorrectly that KAATSU is a tourniquet. It’s like a blood pressure cuff. And it’s keeping blood out of the limbs. However, the opposite is true. We’re trying to keep the blood in the arms and the legs. And so that’s the first stage.
The second stage is when you do slight movement, this actually begins a catalyst of events in the body, a natural progression of signals that are sent to the brain, hormones that are released, metabolites that are produced. And that’s the second stage of KAATSU. And this is all while having the bands on your arms and legs. And over the course of Doctor Sato’s career, that was supported by cardiologist at the University of Tokyo hospital. They were his collaborators. They taught me all the different protocols in order to, how tight do you put the bands, how loose do you put on the band, how long do you put on the bands? For people of all ages. And of different, who have different goals.
Some people who have goals are athletes, and they want to get bigger, faster, stronger. And some people are injured people, and they just want to help their bone or their muscle or their ligament or their tendon improve or get better. And then some people just want to maintain a nice level of wellness. And they might be people in their 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s. So the band simply are you put them around your arms or legs.
We put them to a certain pressure for a certain duration. And then this leads to blood being engorged in the limb, all very safely. And we do certain movements, and this leads to a cascade of biochemical reactions in the brain, which then release a variety of hormones and metabolites in the body. And the person will either improve or get better or get faster. Yeah. Yeah. That’s like the biggest misconception that it’s not cutting off the blood flow entirely, and it’s not creating this damage to your body. It’s actually increasing blood circulation and the KAATSU itself, it’s supposed to be like blood flow moderation instead of blood flow restriction, as I recall. Absolutely correct.
And this was very, very important for people. Everyone from physicians to someone who is a physical therapist to a coach. And again, what it looks like with your eye, it absolutely looks like a tourniquet or a blood pressure cuff. And in reality, it’s exactly the opposite or it functions the actual opposite. And what we’re trying to do is we keep the blood flow going into the arm or leg, and we modify it or slightly reduce it with very, very short periods of time. We’re talking 20 or 30 seconds. And this leads to, for example, an increase in the elasticity of your capillaries and veins. That alone leads to a variety of biochemical reactions in the body, all which are very safe and healthy. Yeah. Like the first time I tried, the KAATSU bands, it was in the Biohacker summit in Toronto. And there I met John as well for the first time.
So I definitely felt like a massive pump or a massive blood flow just because of using the bands and you wouldn’t even have to use any weight with it. I got like this massive hypertrophy response and muscle stimulus from just doing even regular biceps curls without the weights and regular push ups and so on. So it’s like a very that’s like one of the best parts about it was unique aspects of it that you can mimic this heavy weightlifting without the actual heavy weights and you can still sufficiently stimulate the muscles towards muscle hypertrophy and the growth.
es. Absolutely true. And for a healthy person, that’s very, very convenient and very surprising. However, for someone who is wounded or is injured, someone who has just come out of surgery, they might be in a wheelchair or they may have a cast on their limb. Enabling the body to maintain its muscular mass is very, very important post-surgery or post-injury. And this is something that is gradually being understood by the physical therapy and medical markets. Yeah. So John, maybe can you walk us through of your injury and how did you use KAATSU to recover from it?
Sure, Siim, no problem. Well, my injury when I first got introduced to it was a full-thickness tear supraspinatus rotator cuff. So completely shredded it, they had to go in and re-anchor that Rotator cuff.
And first kind of surprised me was where the bands ride on my arm. The injury is not distal to the bands, right? And I was kind of surprised why are the physical therapists using this on me if the injury is not distal of the bands. It’s not below the bands. And what I learned pretty quickly is that experience that you felt at the show Siim, when you had that lactic acid response, when you were doing no weights, but you were doing functional movement, that’s a systemic response. So the body will react to KAATSU as if it’s intense exercise. Well, when you do intense exercise, there’s a whole metabolic reaction in the body.
Metabolites, your hormones, everything that’s associated with intense exercise happen when you’re using KAATSU. And that helps speed up the healing, definitely.
And what we’ve seen in the military and in the Department of Veterans Affairs with military guys that are getting hurt, anybody that has a neuromuscular pathway that’s intact, even if the muscle is very, very weak, if there’s any neuromuscular pathway intact, they can move that limb at all, KAATSU can be very helpful to them because you can take those muscle fibers that are not that are just barely working and maybe don’t have enough strength to, let’s say, extend your leg. Let’s say you have some sort of injury and you just can’t do a full leg extension. When you have KAATSU on and say you’re in the water, you can, really emphasize those movements, if that makes sense. Yeah, like you know the bands themselves apply like this additional pressure as well. And as I understand the KAATSU translates into like additional pressure.
So you’re putting this pressure onto your limbs and moderating the blood flow and the body just responds by, like I said, with this exacerbated response of promoting additional blood flow and releasing all these metabolites and hormones that actually promote the healing process. Exactly. Exactly. But you know what about people who are into more sports performance and such they aren’t injured and for them is the KAATSU and blood flow moderation training also beneficial.
Yeah. Go ahead, John. Go ahead. Oh, I was just going to explain that any sport where you can any movement where you take existing functional movements and you put the limb in an engorged blood state like that. All the capillary. Siim the blood is still moving, right? These are not tourniquets. So everything’s engorged, but like we talked about when we’re looking at your capillary refill when we press on the limb that’s distal of the bands, we still see that there’s good blood flow. It doesn’t stay white when we press on the limb. So anytime the limb is in that state and we’re doing any kind of functional movement, we get the response of intense exercise.
So now take any sport, let’s use swimming as an example. That’s kind of what I did growing up. If we put the bands on and we untether someone in the untethered mode because the bands are waterproof and we put them in the pool and we have them swim just a few laps at moderate speed, that feels like a very, very intense experience. So there’s a lot of good that comes out of that. First of all, you’re getting all the biomarkers that come with intense exercise, right? You’re getting your IGF-1, your HGH, all those types of markers from exercise are go up. But there’s another piece that’s happening too. The athlete is working in a high lactate threshold state, right? So any time you can have the athlete working in a situation where they’re working at a high lactic acid threshold, that is going to be good for them when they’re doing when they’re doing the actual competition or doing an event. If I put the bands on and I jump in the pool and I do, let’s say, 8 25, at a moderate pace, that’s not very much. That’s a very short little swim workout.
By the 8th, 25, it feels like I’m at the end of a very intense 200 freestyle race. I get that lactic acid response through my whole body. That’s a really good thing for athletes. To get that experience and get that feeling. So you know as you take off the cuffs, then the regular exercise is going to be easier just because the body is going to adapt it to a harder workout.
Yep. Yep. And something else to keep in mind because you’re not pushing heavy weight. Let’s say you’re using the KAATSU leg bands for air squats. Pretty quickly, those air squats will feel like you’re pushing pretty significant weight, but in reality, you’re not. You’re just pushing your body weight.
Because you’re just doing bodyweight movements, you’re not actually tearing down muscle fibers and getting the resulting inflammation that comes with tearing down muscle fibers. The traditional strength and conditioning model is, what is it? 80% of one rep max and go to failure, right? Well, when you go to failure, at that type of weight, you’re actually injuring muscle tissue. And the body needs time to recover from that. And there’s definitely an inflammation response. When you use KAATSU, you’re doing, by definition, you’re doing light intensity or light load movement. So you’re not tearing down muscle fibers. And as a result, you don’t have that inflammation response, which means people that use KAATSU associated with athletics or sports, they can definitely do it more often.
Yeah, I think you can achieve the same response by doing KAATSU at the intensities of like 20 to 30%. So you can use like only 20 to 30% of your one rep maximum and still have, the body is going to respond as if you’re using 70 to 80% and that’s like a very beneficial in terms of the actual response and you’re not overloading your joints with this heavy weights all the time.
So you can train more frequently as well. Exactly. And if you’re if you’re an athlete or a competitor that’s no longer 18, 19, 20 years old, let’s say you’re in your 30s or 40s or even older. Let’s say you’re a baby boomer in your 50s or 60s and you’re still involved in sports, this is this is a way to save the body. You still get the metabolic response of intense exercise, but you’re saving that stress and strain on the skeletal system by not pushing heavy weight. Yeah, I think that’s a key aspect with what’s going on with KAATSU. Yeah, like at the aging population, especially would benefit from this because they are losing muscle as they’re getting older, and they don’t get the stimulus for maintaining that muscle, for instance, like, you know, virtually or like a vast majority of older people they don’t really work out with the resistance training at all. And it’s kind of intimidating for them because they haven’t ever done it in their life. But with things like these simple, you know, these KAATSU bands, they can easily do it, and they can also reap the benefits a lot. They can stave off the age of the muscle loss and just improve their general metabolic health. And stave off all different degenerative diseases. Absolutely. And I think that is the that is a real core market.
We do a lot with many dozens of different athletes. I’m sorry, a lot of athletes and dozens of Olympic sports from marathon running to a hundred meter dash to as John mentioned swimming. But also wrestling, boxing, skiing, water polo, volleyball, rugby, et cetera. And working with athletes is great with us because we help them improve their performance. In addition, we help them get higher rate of efficient recovery after performance or after a very hard workout. But really, our core markets are what we target as aging baby boomers, people over the age of 50, who for various reasons don’t want to go to the gym, don’t want to work out, or can’t, for some reason. And we allow them with the KAATSU bands to literally work out doing anything that they do in the course of their life. They could be typing emails. They could be watching their favorite TV program. They could be washing dishes, folding clothes, gardening, walking their dog. All of these activities that they would normally do in the course of their life, if they slap on, if they put on the band, that now becomes metabolically biochemically a very, very good, vigorous workout. Yes, like you’re saving time as well in a sense that you can fold your clothes and do the laundry or do gardening or something else. While still getting like a good exercise and stimulating the muscles, in a beneficial way. Yes, absolutely. That’s really good.
I’ve also seen some research showing that BFR and KAATSU they can promote stem cell proliferation. Is that true? Yes. We have we have not publicly promoted this yet. We know through our ten years of research at the University of Tokyo hospital, all the different metabolites and the significant hormonal response that does occur. But we would like other people in the United States and Europe and elsewhere to be conducting this research. So we support researchers who are pushing this. And if we look around the world, the people who are really pushing the envelope who are really at the forefront of KAATSU, and its benefits, for example, in the stem cell area, remain in Asia. So the Chinese have been looking at this very actively since about 2012. The Brazilians and there are a handful of Americans who are now delving into this area. And as I understand, it’s pretty popular in Japan and Asian countries because Doctor Sato is also from Tokyo. Yes. And I think the Asian view of remaining healthy is certainly different than it is in the United States.
Where we tend to focus, we meaning Americans, tend to focus more on the pharmaceutical solutions to issues. And the Asian populations have a very long history of Chinese medicine. And using different herbs, acupuncture, and what Americans would define as alternative methods.
But these alternative methods have been used for hundreds, if not thousands of years. And so when we introduce something like KAATSU that is very natural, there is nothing in KAATSU that is there’s no cutting open of the body. There’s no consumption of pharmaceuticals. It all starts the process that your body normally does. And this kind of mindset, this kind of approach is very, very acceptable to Japanese, Chinese, Korean and other Asian physicians and physical therapists and consumers. So that’s really why the popularity in the Asian countries has increased. But here in the United States and Europe, the more information that we can share directly with consumers, the more and more acceptance and awareness of KAATSU is beginning. Yeah. And I think like the results also speak for themselves, so Doctor Sato is like in his 70s, if I’m not mistaken, and he’s like really jacked and he has massive biceps. So he’s definitely looking healthy and doesn’t slow down and he doesn’t show any signs of aging compared to the average person who is in their 70s in the Western world and they tend to be like a really sick. They are on some meds. They are dysfunctional. They can’t really take care of themselves. And I think that that’s why the biggest or the most important things for any person can do for them is to just maintain this functional fitness, especially in their later life.
Oh, absolutely. And the thing that really impressed me about Doctor Sato, His wife, all of his patients, is how sharp they are mentally. And how mobile, how strong, how happy they are you know. I’m 50 going to be 58. A lot of people my age, we meet, and we often complain. My back hurts, my knees hurt. My shoulder hurts, et cetera. And all of the people that I met in Japan and China who have been doing this for a while, there is zero of those conversations. They view KAATSU as part of their lifestyle. And this is a very specific goal of Doctor Sato in order to maintain to be healthy until the day we die. Yeah. It’s obviously a very ambitious goal. But when I see Doctor Sato and his colleagues in their late 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, these people are very healthy. They have no problem walking up and down several flights of stairs. They have no problems picking up something heavy. They have no problems stretching, putting their arms above their shoulders, walking, and all the things that we take for granted when we are younger.
And so they really, really, what we say walk the walk and talk the talk. They are great examples of the benefits of KAATSU over your lifetime. Yeah, yeah. And I myself also use them for, you know, just the regular functionality and even, aesthetics, and you can use it for bodybuilding, especially as well, because one of the aspects of muscle growth is like the blood flow and maintaining that blood flow. So if you are able to sustain the blood flow for longer, then it’s also going to end up with a greater muscle hypertrophy in the final results. So that’s also not for old people only. It’s also for anyone who just wants to optimize their physique. Yeah. And I’m glad you mentioned that is very, very important. And as all of the societies, it doesn’t matter where you are. South America, Iceland, Singapore, or Estonia.
We are all becoming because of our jobs, more tied to our desks. We sit a lot more than we used to. We can do everything on our computer or on our smartphone. And we can tella communicate, we have the Internet. We have access to all the information. So we are as a human species. We are sitting a lot more. We are, there is less need for us to be active. Around the world, any age, young kids nowadays, they’re not outside as much as previous generations. Previous generations were riding their bikes and running around and playing games. And now, a lot of that activity has been replaced by playing on your smartphone or doing things in front of a laptop. And so everybody needs to stimulate the body in order to A. maintain a very healthy muscle mass that enables you to do functional movement and B. have very elastic capillaries and veins. And over the course of one’s life, if you can do just those two things, you’re going to lead a very active, healthy, productive life. Yeah.
And with the help of these kinds of, let’s say, technology and I would categorize the KAATSU bands as a technology because it’s not the same as like a regular blood flow restriction bands. It actually incorporates the appliance of this pressure as well. And you can use you can use those things anywhere. At your home, even like or in an elevator or even on the airplane, just put the bands on, and you can still get a good workout without having to go to your one rep max on the back squat or the bench press. You can do like regular push-ups and even the biceps curls without the weights and still get a good exercise. Yes, absolutely. You’re absolutely correct. Anywhere, any time by anyone. Yeah. John, what kind of exercises do you use with the KAATSU bands? So after spending the career in the navy, my body’s kind of broken down so that another benefit of this type of exercise is I don’t go to the gym anymore. I don’t push big weights at a gym. I have some elastic bands. I have TRX, and I have the KAATSU Cycle 2.0, which is our small new device. And it just runs in the cycle mode. That device is 30 seconds on. And 5 seconds off. And each time it releases the pressure, it’ll come up a little higher in pressure. And so what I’ll do is I’ll put those bands on, I’ll put the TRX bands hanging from a tree in the backyard, and I’ll just do some all kinds of movements with TRX bands or any kind of exercise movement that in the past I might have used a lot of weight with, and now I use basically no weight or a very light resistance.
And gone are the days of, you know that feeling when you go to the gym and you do, you do chest and you go hard and then your chest is basically done for the next two or three days, right? Or if you do something where you have a chronic injury or some pain or some kind of orthopedic issue that you’ve been dealing with for years, I mean, that’s me. So every time I go to the gym and push weight, I’m basically down for a matter of days. So with KAATSU, I don’t do any of that. I just use this cycle mode, that pressure on pressure off, a little more pressure on, pressure off. And it all happens automatically in the background while I do just very, very simple exercise movement. So that’s how I exercise to answer your question. But in addition to that, and I don’t have them running right now because it makes a little background noise, but just right before we started this call, I was doing emails with my arms going through those cycle modes. So what I’ve found is there’s a lot of like Stephen was talking about earlier. There’s just a lot of day to day activity that I never thought of as exercise before. But now, when I’m wearing KAATSU, they’re absolutely exercise.
And they feel like it. Yeah. You try folding laundry with the armbands on, and after ten minutes of that, you’re done. Yeah, but yeah, so my workouts have definitely changed as a result. Yeah, like I do love the unique aspect of the KAATSU bands of the KAATSU Cycles, which is this appliance of pressure, and it’s going to build up eventually. So that’s one of the biggest differences between regular blood flow restriction bands as well. And it does make it easier for you. You can just even sit there doing nothing and put the KAATSU Cycle on, and it’s going to start modifying your blood flow. It really feels effective.
The KAATSU Cycle 2.0 is launched. After years of research, design modifications, software changes, user feedback, and utilization of metabolite testing results. The next generation KAATSU Cycle 2.0 is now available. It is more compact and quieter. It is more capable and more powerful than the first-generation KAATSU Nano and KAATSU Master products. The KAATSU Cycle 2.0 enables exercise, recovery, and rehabilitation anywhere, any time by anyone. The ultra-compact, ultra-light, durable unit offers the KAATSU Cycle and KAATSU Master Training modes and utilizes precise software-controlled limb pressure for both your arms and legs.
The KAATSU Cycle 2.0 includes four KAATSU air bands for both arms and legs. They rechargeable battery with a USB-C charger. The pneumatic elastic bands can be disconnected from the KAATSU Cycle 2.0 unit and are waterproof for use in the pool. Based on the original KAATSU know-how and U.S. Patent number 9 7 7 5 6 1 9 compression and decompression control system and vascular strengthening method. The KAATSU Cycle 2.0 can do the following. It can tone muscles without weights. It’s convenient. It can be done anywhere, any time by anyone. It offers access to the KAATSU performance database. It offers 6 preset KAATSU Cycle levels. It can efficiently and effectively improve speed, stamina, and strength. The KAATSU Cycle 2.0 is an incredible time saver. It can improve circulation. It enables faster recovery. It enables greater range of motion for those rehabilitating and recovering from injuries and surgeries. It is reimbursable with various CPT codes. And the KAATSU Cycle 2.0 offers customizable KAATSU pressures. KAATSU profoundly simple and simply profound. Statements made in this podcast have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose treat cure or prevent any disease. For more information about KAATSU and KAATSU products, visit KAATSUglobal.com. That’s K-A-A-T-S-U global.com.
Yeah, that passive expansion and relaxation of all your vascular tissue that’s distal of the bands. There’s all kinds of benefits that come with that. We have plenty of athletes that use that as a warmup before a hard work session. You can think of elite swimmer being in the ready room right before an event. And having the bands on in that cycle mode, which does a lot of things, but if you just think of all the tissue distal of the band being slightly engorged and stretched open for 30 seconds and then released. And then stretched open for 30 seconds and release. Think of like for your listeners here. Think of like a cold, brand new balloon, right? When you try to blow up that balloon and it’s brand new, it’s difficult. If you take that balloon, you stretch it 5 or ten times and then try to blow up that balloon. It easily blows up, right? You get that elasticity component. There’s a very similar thing going on with your vascular system.
And the more you can stretch open and relax that vascular system all the way down to the capillaries, the more you can do that, the more vascular elasticity you’re going to have. It’s almost like a physical stretching that’s taking place down at the capillary level. And right after you do that, obviously, your blood flow is going to be opened up significantly. So right before an event. Yeah, so it’s also like the consistency and the frequencies are important to prevent the stagnation of the blood vessels, so to say, right, right, right. I mean, even if you do absolutely no functional movement in your just laying there, it’s almost like you’re exercising from the inside out because every time a blood vessel is expands and contracts, expands and contracts, your mind interprets that as some form of exercise. And reacts accordingly. So even if you’re not doing a lifting movement or a workout movement, there’s still all kinds of benefit to the passive aspect of it. Yeah. What about running or something, sprinting or something that’s something you should want to avoid? I wouldn’t say avoid it. I would just say it’s going to be a difficult so you can lower the duration and shorten the length.
Let’s just say you’re doing running, right? And you’re a sprinter. And you want to increase and you want to increase speed. When you have the bands on, and you’re going through all your full range of motion, you can go through full range of motion at half speed during the cycle phase. You can go to a threshold pressure or what we call your optimal pressure and go ahead and untether the bands and go at full speed.
But what you’ll find is if normally you can do 10/100 100 sprints for your workout, when you have the bands on, you might only be doing 5/25 sprints before you’re completely done. But I mean, there’s a couple of good things happening there, right? Here, hold on, I got some background noise there sorry about that.
There’s a couple of good things happening there when you when you start exercising like that, you’re getting the same outcome as if you were doing the 10/100 sprint by only doing a couple 25 sprints, but you’re saving that strain on your body as well. And there’s a lot of athletes that utilize the USRPT. I think it’s ultra-short race-pace training. And when you do short race pace training and you have KAATSU on, you can get the same if not maybe even better outcomes, but save all that excess strain on your body. Yeah. And when it comes to the heavier weight, then you should want to kind of stick to the lower loads.
Instead of doing like heavy weights. Yeah. Yeah. One of the things we run into in special operations is guys, especially the younger elite athletes, the younger tactical athletes to what we call them. They like to push weight. They don’t want to stop pushing weight. So we let those guys still go heavy if they want.
But we significantly change their human performance profiler. They’re work out profile. So instead of having an hour and a half of pushing heavy, heavy weight, they might have a functional mobility warmup, then they might have a section where for 15 minutes, they’re pushing weight. But then they put the KAATSU bands on, and they’re not pushing heavy weight, but their bodies reacting as if as if they are.
So they still get that brute strength, push heavy weight in a younger guys, they want that. I understand that. I recognize that you know these guys feel a need to be able to do that. And if you’re a professional football player, you need to be able to push heavy weight. But you can really pull back from how much and how often you do that and help protect your body and get a little more longevity out of that athlete.
Yeah. Yeah, that’s a good point, so say that people think that always more is better and heavier is better, et cetera, but sometimes it’s actually better to kind of have the more of a moderate approach and consistency sort of thing. Yeah. I would totally agree. So many athletes nowadays are overtraining. And it’s that more is better mentality yeah yeah.
Stephen, can you maybe give some more examples of the medical research done on KAATSU bands and how can it benefit people beyond just muscle growth? Yeah. Before I do that, I want to go back on the running portion, one of the very, very successful approaches to running, especially for triathletes or marathon runners.
Anybody who’s running more, let’s say, than a 100 or 200 meters, is to use a very low pressure on the bands. And then run for a certain either time, duration. It can be one or two minutes or a certain distance. Let’s say 500 meters or one kilometer. At a low pressure. If you add that to your workout, and then continue on, take off the bands.
We see tremendous increase, not only in the ability for the blood to be going very efficiently to their working muscles. But also for lactate to be removed from their muscles more quickly. And this actually has application in the medical field. And that is what we found at the University of Tokyo Hospital.
So it didn’t matter if it was an athlete who was coming in or an older person who had just had a heart attack. We put bands on these people, the KAATSU bands, very shortly after their surgery. And then allowed them to just simply walk. KAATSU walking is our most beneficial And easiest thing to do, whether that’s done in the hospital or physical therapy clinic or at your home. And what happens when we walk… And this was all the research that was done by the Doctor Nakajima, Doctor Morita, and Doctor Sato is that when you help increase the elasticity of your capillaries and veins, there leads to all kinds of things.
For example, we documented very clearly an increase in IGF-1 insulin growth factor. We documented nitric oxide increases endothelial cell increases and depending on where you are; at what stage of your life, young, middle-aged, or old. All of these things that we found in our research are very, very helpful. And you know that research is ongoing. That’s a pretty awesome and a lot of it just has to do with both the physical transformation, so to say, that increase in muscle mass and decrease in fat mass, but as well like the blood flow aspect is also very critical as we as we’ve mentioned already quite frequently. Yeah. And I think one other thing is very, very important.
Because KAATSU in with low pressures is literally easy to do. A lot of people, they start physical therapy or they start some kind of recovery program and once they’re discharged from the hospital or they don’t go to the physical therapist, this becomes difficult for them to repeat. With KAATSU, we found that because it’s so easy to do, and because you don’t need high pressures you know, quite often we go on YouTube or online and we see these very healthy young men with huge muscles, really working out hard. Well, if you’re 25 years old with huge biceps and huge triceps and a big chest and you’re a healthy young man, this doesn’t have anything to do with an 85-year-old man who hasn’t visited a gym in 30 years.
And so what we try to teach people is you can do this very easily at your home or at a physical therapy clinic, et cetera. And then they can repeat it over and over again throughout their life every day, every week, every month. And this cumulative effect of having doing KAATSU, increasing the elasticity of your capillaries and veins secreting all of the things from ITF1 to nitric oxide to endothelial cells.
These are things that are very, very helpful over the course of our lifetime. Yeah. Yeah, like definitely the convenience is a huge factor, so to say, you can put or you can put the person on any exercise routine or even a diet program, but it’s not going to work if they aren’t able to stick to it. So the adherence is the biggest factor for any kind of transformation and any kind of long-term success. Yes, absolutely.
So how would like people, you know, do they need any specific special training or something like that in order to start using the brands? We’ve worked actually with Doctor Sato since 2001 in order to make KAATSU as safe and easy to use as possible. There still needs to be some education, of course.
But really, our newest products, the KAATSU Cycle 2.0, we really worked hard to make it very easy for people to learn. If anybody has any questions, they can always call or email us. And we do this all day long. They can have very specific questions, and we can answer a very general questions that we can answer. But really, we have all of the information that they need to know either on our website or on our blog, we produced a monthly digital magazine with lots of examples of people of all ages. So they can purchase the equipment, they can read the instructions and follow our what we call the KAATSU specialist program online.
And if they still have questions, they’re always free to call or email us. Yeah. And there’s also like a video training videos about the exercises and all those things. So it’s pretty easy to grasp and quick to learn as well. Yeah, we hope so. What are some of the differences between the different bands? So there are quite a few of them. Yes.
The good thing is that when we started KAATSU, I think it was so good that we have now a lot of competitors. And that is good. The more competitors we have, actually, we see this as a point of pride because we know we have done a good thing.
We know that as one company, we could not service everybody around the world. So we view competition as good. But the number of years that we’ve been researching this under very strict medical supervision leads us to believe that we really know what we’re talking about. Our real goal is to enable people of any age, anywhere in the world to do KAATSU for their benefit. And because of this, our number one goal was safety, bar none. We wanted everything to associated with KAATSU to be safe. And we did that under the supervision of cardiologists working with people who were cardiac rehab patients.
So in other words, people who had heart attacks, people who had a heart bypass surgery, people who had a stroke or clots, et cetera we did KAATSU on them first. And when we did KAATSU on them and learned how to keep everybody safe without any issues, then we knew that we could help healthy people and others safe. So I think the biggest difference between KAATSU and everybody else, is our entire company focused on safety and we started with people who had heart attacks. And we did our research with people who are very, very physically vulnerable. And so we know if we could help those kinds of people, again, following the protocols that were established by Doctor Sato and Doctor Nakajima and Doctor Morita at the University of Tokyo hospital that safety is absolutely number one.
And that means that the length of our bands, the width of our bands, the amount of pressure, the duration of our pressure, the very, very importance of having pneumatic bands, some people complain to us or have stated, well, your bands are so expensive. Well, they’re expensive because they’re very, very expensive to make. And we wanted to make something that someone could do anywhere, any time, safely.
And therefore, we focused on that. So everything we’ve done in the company starts with safety. And then the next stage you know, obviously, we want to see benefits. We want to see positive effects. And because we’ve worked so long with so many people, all the way up to the age of a 104, Olympic athletes, professional athletes, world champions, as well as people who are quadriplegic or don’t have legs or don’t have arms or are comatose.
We have learned how to work with all of these people safely. And I think that distinguishes KAATSU bands with all the other bands out there. Yeah, like definitely I can tell from my own personal experience that the KAATSU Cycles themselves you know, the standard of KAATSU cycles, make it worth it, so to say, so that you can get the you can get the minimal effective response by just using the KAATSU Cycles with the additional pressure that you don’t really get from the regular bands that don’t have the automation yes. That is absolutely true. John, you have kids. So do you ever or have you used the KAATSU bands on your children? And what do you think is like the best or the minimal or the earliest time that you can start using them? Well, that’s a great question when I first met Doctor Sato. We were on a family trip in Tokyo, and my daughter, who was 9 at the time, is that right?
Yeah, she’s 12 now. So she was 9. And she had just broke her arm. Three days before we met Doctor Sato. So she had a cast on from her armpit all the way down to her wrist. And of course, Doctor Sato, as soon as he saw Meg, that’s my daughter. As soon as he saw Meg walk in with this big fiberglass pink cast, he said, “Ah. We must do KAATSU.” And I was kind of taken aback a little bit because you know Meg is only 9 years old. But we talked through this. It’s so safe like Steven was saying, I mean, this stuff really got its legs with cardiac rehab. I mean, there’s no danger to using it on younger kids. Now, of course, that was under Doctor Sato’s mentorship and leadership. And what he showed me was that when Meg put the band on and she went through the automated cycle, he had her do an isometric hold in her arm each time that it came up in the cycle. So during that cycle, he had set up was 20 seconds on 5 seconds off. So for 20 seconds, Meg would do an isometric hold, relax. Isometric hold, relax. And he told us, do that for the next 6 weeks while she has the cast on. And her arm will not shrink. So he was right. The atrophy aspect, we did get the, you know, the typical broken limb 6 weeks later. She came out of that cast. And of course, she was stiff, but there was no atrophy.
As a matter of fact, her up high on her arm that was in the cast actually was a little bit bigger than her other arm. Which sort of blew me away, but if you think about it, she was doing all this focus, isometric holds on her bad arm, so she was actually in some ways working out her broken arm more than her other. That was Meg at 9 years old. Ryan is 15. He’s a basketball player.
And he has no problem with me talking about this. He did a podcast talking about it. He has JIA, Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis. There’s a lot of inflammation and pain that comes with that disease. And Ryan was also shown KAATSU by Doctor Sato. And has been doing it ever since because what Ryan will tell you is when he uses when he’s doing a KAATSU Cycle that pain response that comes from the inflammation is associated with that type of arthritis. The pain goes down significantly. And over time, the inflammation is goes down as well.
But the big thing for him is pain, because you know basketball, that’s a high demand, lower extremity sport as a lot of demand on the lower limbs, and where he has the most problems with JIA is his knees and his ankles. So he’ll spend most of his KAATSU time is done on his legs in the cycle mode.
Both when he’s shooting in the backyard or when he’s doing homework and just elevates his feet and it’s typing away on his laptop. Yeah. And in our oldest son. Yeah, go ahead, Siim. No, it’s just gonna say that’s like really fortunate that he has access to this kind of thing and he’s like, yeah, very beneficial for these, especially like casts or something related to immobility. Yeah.
Of all three kids, we have that that’s been that’s been the one I’ve enjoyed watching the most is just because of the good outcomes he’s having from that arthritis. And then Sean is he was a swimmer for a while. He’s the oldest of our three. And he used KAATSU as a warmup and a warm-down during swimming competition. So the warming down aspect of KAATSU fascinates me. When you work, your muscles really hard. And your tissue gets full of lactate and toxins that are associated with heavy work. KAATSU is a great way to help flush that lactate out of the tissue. Because each time the bands go through that automated pressure on pressure off, when the band’s inflated, your cardiac output, the stroke volume of your heart has to increase to keep the blood moving past the band. And then the bands go through this rapid complete depressurization.
Well, as soon as that happens, everything distal of the bands that was just stretched wide open, you now have your heart pumping, that much harder, and you get this almost flushing sensation of lactate out of the muscle tissue. So there’s a lot of athletes that use KAATSU to recover immediately after heavy work. And that’s what Shawn used it for a lot in the sport of swimming.
So it’s a family affair. My wife uses it too. We’ll be working in the kitchen and we’ll have leg bands on, and then we’ll untether and we’ll take the dogs for a walk and there’s our leg workout for today. Yeah, that’s pretty awesome. And yeah, like the recovery aspect is also that’s the way I use it. I still do regular weightlifting and regular calisthenics, but I use the bands for rest days as well as maybe finishing off some muscle groups for recovery and such as really multifaceted in the way that you can use it. And I think yeah, it’s a really amazing invention, so to say. So it’s a worthwhile to also make sure to know how did Doctor Sato discover the use of these things. Maybe Stephen can elaborate on the story. Yeah, it was quite interesting. Doctor Sato always had an interest in actually, first powerlifting, and then later bodybuilding. And so he was always interested in weight training in order to support his powerlifting Career.
And one day, he was actually in a Buddhist temple, and he was kneeling down. So he was sitting on sitting on his ankles and knees, and he felt his calf because it felt like it was tightening up.
But then when he felt his calf, the calf muscle was actually just as a pumped as it is when he would be doing regular heel raises or squats. He thought that the blood keeping out of the limb out of his legs because the way they sit when they sit on their ankles, that was leading to muscle hypertrophy. However, when he did more and more research and thought about it more deeply, he realized that he was actually keeping the blood in the lower leg.
And so he literally started to test by putting bicycle tires and other elastic bands around his arms, his legs, his head, his torso, his chest, he would put two bands on, three bands on, and over the course of literally 7 years, documenting every possible thing he realized that KAATSU based on sitting down on his ankles was a form of keeping blood in the limbs. And once he figured out that, then it was a matter of time, another anywhere from, you know, another decade, another ten years, when he was trying to figure out, what is the optimal way to build muscle? What is the optimal way to gain aerobic endurance? What is the optimal way to help, let’s say, a broken bone heal itself. And that continued for another 10 to 12 years.
And then he was able to get his colleagues at the University of Tokyo hospital to do formal research on that. And one of his colleagues was the exercise physiologist, Doctor Ishii, who wrote the first peer review published paper, I think that was in 1996 based on other work that they had done around 1993. So Doctor Sato invented KAATSU in a Buddhist temple, or at least the inspiration came to him in the 1960s. He experimented on himself until about the mid-1970s. And then he continued experimenting once he figured out that blood limb engorgement was the goal. In the 70s and 80s, and then in the 90s, he began formal research at the University of Tokyo Hospital and in the starting in 2004, he started to work with the cardiologist. With the heart attack survivors and heart bypass surgery patients for ten years. And that during that ten year period, he was training me and others how to do KAATSU properly and that is the basis of all the protocols that we currently use now with KAATSU. Yeah. So it’s almost like Newton’s apple story that he kind of got this idea out of nowhere. And kind of went with it. This is very good. Fortunate situation.
And yeah, I would imagine that the world is a great in-depth tool, this kind of discovery because I see like a massive value for especially like the aging population, as well as any rehab and any injury treatment. So yeah, it’s an amazing thing. So we’re going to start wrapping up the podcast as well. So before I ask my last question, where can people learn more about you guys and your work? Yes.
People can go to KAATSU, the KAATSU website that’s K-A-A-T-S-U-global dot com. So K-A-A-T-S-U-global dot com. You can go there. You can also go to KAATSUblog.com that’s K-A-A-T-S-U blog dot com.
Or you could just write us. email us and we’ll send you out some free magazines and that will show you all kinds of examples and testimonials of people from around the world who have used KAATSU. Awesome. That’s good. And I’m going to put all the links in the show notes. And if I’m not mistaken, yeah, then they can use my affiliate link with a code where they can get 10% off. Absolutely. So it’s good.
My last question is, what’s this one piece of advice or a habit, you wish you adopted sooner? Oh, I wish I would have done been able to use and know KAATSU when I was an athlete myself. I mean, that is you know I would have used it as a warmup. I would have used it in the course of my training, and I would have used it as recovery you know. Unfortunately, I was in my late 30s when I was introduced to Doctor Sato.
I wish I would have been introduced to him in my teenage years. What about you, John? I wish I would have had access to this when I was doing all the traveling that I was doing in the SEAL teams. I mean, you do all this training when you do that kind of work. And none of the training or very little of the training is at home station. So you’re almost always on the go. And if you’re not training, then you’re away on deployment. And what we found is it’s very cumbersome to bring a lot of workout equipment on a deployment or on a training trip with all of the bumper plates and the rowers and all the equipment that comes with it. As a matter of fact, a SEAL platoon will have two full pallets full aircraft pallets full of exercise equipment and knowing what I know now, I mean, honestly, what fits in half of my little knapsack, my backpack is all I need to sustain and even have physical improvement. So I wish I had this early on in my career in the Navy. I definitely could have used it. But I’m glad to have it now. Yeah, it’s so easy to travel with like literally you can just you can just even at the gym or at the hotels, they’re very notorious for having like bad exercise equipment and very light loads. So with the KAATSU bands, it doesn’t matter because you can just use the light loads and still get a good workout. So it’s an amazing traveling tool. Exactly. Exactly.
Well, thanks guys for coming to the podcast. And yeah, looking forward to more future research as well as spreading the use of this amazing device. Thank you very much. Yeah. And continue thank you. All right, that’s it for this episode as a reminder, I want to tell you if you want to get the KAATSU bands, then use the code Siim for a 10% discount. The bands are quite amazing and it’s definitely something that I use basically every day for both muscle hypertrophy as well as just increasing recovery and blood flow. So yeah, I’m a huge fan of these things. That’s it for this episode. My name is Siim, stay tuned for the next one, stay in empowered.
Introducing the KAATSU Cycle 2.0. KAATSU is the ultimate biomech for health rehabilitation and recovery training by laterally and untethered from the unit. Tone muscle without weights, lessening the risk of injury to joints and muscles. Improve speed, stamina, and strength. Exercise, recover and rehabilitate anytime anywhere. Increase range of motion and promote improved circulation. Accelerate training when time is of the essence. These are just a few of the benefits of the new KAATSU Cycle 2.0. Invented in 1966 by Doctor Yoshiaki Sato of Tokyo, Japan, and protected by 47 patents, KAATSU, next-generation equipment and protocols have a unique and unprecedented safety track record with over 20 million individual KAATSU sessions in 48 countries around the globe. Backed by over 50 years of expertise, KAATSU global is excited to introduce the latest advancement in health and wellness the KAATSU Cycle 2.0. Fitting in the palm of your hand or in your pocket the KAATSU Cycle 2.0 is the most advanced most portable, easiest-to-use compression device in the world.
In combination with a precise algorithm-controlled limb pressure, KAATSU’s narrow elastic bands, yield to muscle contractions, providing safe and effective exercise and rehabilitation for users of all ages and from all walks of life. From Olympic champions to disabled individuals. KAATSU users have a full range of motion, providing complete control and the opportunity for a wide variety of movements and training.
From the elite athletes and soldiers to aging baby boomers and busy executives, KAATSU Cycle 2.0 is the next-generation training and rehabilitation device used around the world. KAATSU is used by the United States Department of Defense as well as the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. KAATSU profoundly simple and simply profound. Statements made in this podcast have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose treat, cure, or prevent. Any disease for more information about KAATSU and KAATSU products. Visit KAATSU global dot com. That’s K-A-A-T-S-U Global dot com.