|Newly Redesigned NormaTec Pulse System|
Taking a step back, previously I had tried recovery boots at various races over the years but I found that the staff always set the level too high and I felt like my eyes were bulging out of their sockets. Having a medical device background selling implantable pacemakers and defibrillators I have developed a high level of respect for both the heart and the body and the devices simply scared me.
Fast forward and I lived with another athlete this past winter who owned a set of boots. This time, I was able learn about the boots, get into the boots, and most importantly start gradually at my own pace. I developed my own protocol for using them. The more I used them, the more my legs responded to them, the more I liked them. As someone who has always developed an injury in winter training, this was the first year I actually didn't end up with a injury. To say I am now addicted would be an understatement, they simply go everywhere with me.
Now the only real downside to Normatec is simply they are not affordable to the masses. Sure there are many people who can afford them, but there are many more that can't and that is unfortunate because I believe compression boots are the number one recovery tool in my arsenal, knocking off foam rolling, and pushing it to a distant #2. Fortunately there are other makers of recovery boots that are more reasonably priced and do an excellent job. One of the alternatives is the Air Relax system.
|Air Relax Recovery Boots System|
The Air Relax system is very similar to the Normatec system. This isn't going to be an in-depth review between the two because I have already done it. Both systems are amazing, I highly recommend both, and both have add-ons for things like the hips and arms. Here are some subtle subtle differences between the two:
- Small, portable, compression unit, smaller than the Normatec MVP system but bigger than the new Normatec Pulse unit.
Air Relax System (~$352 with discount)
- Pressure can go up to 230mmHg and has 4 pressure levels.
- If you are extremely tall the legs might be a little shorter than what you can get on the Normatec Pulse.
- Available in both US version for US plugs and European version for Euro plugs. Make sure you purchase the correct one.
- Highly affordable. You can buy them readily on Amazon or direct from Air Relax and save 7% with coupon code TGRLCHAZ8
- Newly updated Aug/Sept 2016. Model has been updated featuring distinct dark grey boots. Here is what the company wrote me when I inquired about the differences: "It is quite the same in terms of settings and modes. We have adjusted the pressure a little. There is a little more room in the feet area of the cuff, which will let you to pull up the cuff higher on your thighs. The hoses are hidden on the new Air Relax. In addition the direction of the hoses was changed."
Normatec Pulse (basic model, $1595)- Can be used without the AC Adaptor for a limited time on battery - think airport use when you can't find an outlet.
- Legs are a bit longer - if extremely tall this might be something you want
- Pressure can go up to 100mmHg and has 7 pressure levels
- Can easily set time in 5 minute increments
- More expensive, starting at $1595 for the basic model. Unfortunately I do not have a coupon code for Normatec to give you.
Again, both systems are amazing. If you can afford Normatec and want Normatec then buy them. If you can't spend that kind of money but want a comparable system for nearly 1/5th the price then go with Air Relax.
Air Relax on Amazon
Air Relax NA Distributor Website - Use coupon code TGRLCHAZ8 to save 7%