Tempe semiconductor software company CEO Fabrice Dechoux needed a better solution to help his teenage daughter recover faster from injuries as a star youth tennis player in the state.
Frustrated with doctors, the two discovered cryotherapy, and were hooked.
“We were our first victims,” said Dechoux, CEO of Test Acuity Solutions, formerly Test Advantage Software, who considers himself a lifestyle athlete. “It really was an accident. We saw a problem and an opportunity that didn’t exist. We were looking for a more holistic approach.”
Dechoux opened Cerulean, a progressive athletic training and wellness center, this week in Scottsdale, to help athletes of all ages in similar situations. The official grand opening is planned for Dec. 15.
The center offers many non-invasive, non-medical treatments and exercise options to help athletes of all levels train and recover faster from the stress of competitive sports or workouts.
“Top athletes have access to most of these modalities, but we wanted to integrate it for everyone,” said Dechoux, Cerulean’s CEO and president. “No one has assembled and made these available to the general public.”
The 8,000-square-foot center offers month-to-month memberships geared to avid athletes who want to get an edge on the competition, people who are health and fitness conscious who believe 40 is the new 30, those who value natural approaches to beauty and health, and people who suffer from chronic pain who want to enjoy a more active life.
“The body is a sophisticated machine,” said Dechoux, who self-funded the center. “If you stimulate your body, it will do amazing things.”
The $1.5 million facility near Via de Ventura and 90th Street includes $900,000 of unique, top-of-the-line equipment and advanced technology.
The center offers a cryosauna for whole body arctic cryotherapy, compression recovery therapy using compression pants, arctic cryofacials and localized cryotherapy, and a hypobaric adaptive conditioning pod to simulate altitude changes.
“Now you don’t have to go to Flagstaff to train in higher altitudes,” said Dechoux, who lives in Scottsdale.
A cardio gym, featuring high-end exercise bikes, indoor water rowers and other workout equipment, is featured in the country’s second largest high-altitude room, other than Olympic training centers, said Melissa Johns, Cerulean’s athletic and outreach program coordinator.
“This room accelerates fat loss because the body has to adapt to the thinner air,” said Johns, adding that a typical 50-minute workout in the high-altitude room equates to 80 minutes of a typical workout.
A rejuvenation bullpen with lounge chairs offers cellular repair therapy, intermittent hypoxic therapy and sedentary training, and lower-body compression therapy.
A VIP room is available with a large Woodway treadmill for pro or serious athletes who prefer working alone. A zero gravity training room is planned soon.
Cerulean is designed to augment the typical workout, prepare for a particular sporting event and get the body to perform better and make the body stronger, as well as beauty benefits that strengthen the skin and improve collagen, said Mel Dixon, Cerulean’s vice president and program managing director.
“You can come here after your workout to recover, or we can help alleviate your pain,” said Dixon, a dentist by trade. “This is just another arrow in your quiver for wellness. They all complement each other and give you more energy and endurance.”
Measurable data will be provided to each member to show improvements, he added.
An RFID wristband and fingerprint check-in offer a high-tech and secure way to check in each member from the lobby kiosks. The kiosk allows the member to book sessions and open their personal changing room in the center.
Memberships range from $225 to $1,000 a month, depending on the types of treatments and options needed.
The center now has seven employees, and is hiring for client customer service, front desk reception and trainers.
The plan is to be up to 30 employees when the center is fully operational and open seven days a week. Cerulean is now closed on Sundays.
Want to know more about what exactly cryotherapy, a cryofacial and hypobaric conditioning feels like? Read about my experiences trying these out for the first time at Cerulean.