Hyperice Normatec Go Review: The Recovery Boot Just Got Much Smaller

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Few recovery therapies are more satisfying and altogether relaxing than the air compression boot. Over the last few years, it’s become a critical piece of my own recovery regimen: At least two days a week, I zip my legs into these air compression boots, lay on the couch, and set the control unit for 35 minutes, letting the gently aggressive air massage loosen and knead tight hamstrings, quads, and calves.

But the recovery boot also has a pretty big problem: Its sheer size. Sure you can pack the new Normatec recovery boots into a backpack, but they’ll take up nearly the entire backpack. And to travel with them, you need to tote three parts, the two boots, and the control unit. Earlier this year, Therabody’s JetBoot eliminated the need for a control unit. Now, Hyperice is pushing portability and user-friendliness (and affordability) to a new level with the Normatec Go.

Now, you can get lower-body air compression technology for your calves, in a sleek package that can easily fit in any gym bag. And you can do it for all of $349. The Normatec Go is the accessible entry point into air compression therapy that you’ve been waiting for, a versatile, easy-to-use device that can go anywhere with you.

Hyperice Normatec Go

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Air Compression Has Been Intuitively Designed

Somehow, Hyperice manages to pack nearly all the power of the classic Normatec compression boots into the Go while losing serious size and surface area. Out of the box you get a pair of calf-length sleeves with a combined weight of just 1.2 pounds. Each has a small control panel on the side.

The two units are pre-paired with each other and can be Bluetooth-paired with the Hyperice app on your phone or tablet for easy control. But truth is, you don’t even need to do that. You can easily direct your Go from the control units, adjusting time or level of pressure with the push of a button. It’s the smartest, most intuitive set of controls on any recovery device to date, regardless of category. And in an age when everything needs to be paired to your phone before you can even use it, the Normatec Gos are refreshingly simple.

An extra-elastic Velcro strap runs the length of each Go unit, and this proves to be a drastic but useful departure from the standard zippers that are found on most compression boots. The Velcro strap is user-friendly and efficient, and it also creates some versatility for the device. This is meant for your calves, but you can wrap your arms in your Gos as well, getting quick upper-body compression effects. The lone downside of the design is that you can’t use the Gos on your thighs, meaning your quads and hamstrings can’t get any love. The Gos simply don’t stretch that far.

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The User Experience Is Sublime

Things get even better once you set yourself up in the Gos, which are so user-friendly that my mom, who’s not exactly on the cutting edge of recovery gear, can navigate them. And both she (and I) are getting an experience that’s on par with a pair of traditional oversized recovery boots.

The Normatec Gos actually have the potential to deliver slightly more aggressive compression than standard boots. Normatec’s latest recovery boots have a pressure range of 30-110 mm/HG. The Gos deliver 40-200. In practice, you won’t notice much difference though, especially if you’re not someone who cranks your boots up to the highest levels.

The Gos feel very different, though, in part because the entire compression feeling is centralized in a much smaller area. Three compartments fill with air, each tightening around your calf to deliver a soft, comforting massage. In a way, this feels terrifically freeing: I can get the compression my calves need without being stuck in a lying position on the couch. It’s easier to play video games or type while wearing the Gos, and I’ve actually used my pair during an airplane flight too.

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The device defaults to a 15-minute routine as well, a sign that it’s meant for a more portable experience. But the battery lasts for up to 3 hours and charges easily via USB-C. The only thing you’ll miss about the Go is the ability to address hamstrings and quads.

Still, the overall end result is the perfect starting point for your compression boot journey. Just two short years ago, you needed to shell out more than $1,000 and needed plenty of room for air compression. Now, just $349 and the Normatec Gos can go anywhere, anytime, offering you the lower-body recovery you need.


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