Hyperice X 2021 review
Imagine, for a moment, that you have pain in your knees (and if you’re like many gym goers who play basketball or hit hard, you’re almost certain to face that at some point). To combat the problem, you can put a messy ice pack on your knee to ease the pain. Or maybe you would put a heating pad on your knee to promote blood circulation.
Or, you can grab a sleek black sleeve called the Hyperice X, tie it to your knee, connect it to your phone via Bluetooth, and enjoy a unique blend of heat and cold designed to promote blood flow and healing in your knee. . And suddenly the recovery puzzle just got a little easier.
The Hyperice X is the latest recovery device from a company at the forefront of recovery and wellness. A few years ago Hyperice was leading the revolution in vibration therapy, providing vibrating foam rollers and massage guns, and last year Hyperice added NormaTec, which manufactures air compression boots, at the fold.
The X is the brand’s latest innovation and it pushes the entire salvage industry in a new direction. It is intended to simulate “contrast therapy”, a unique recovery therapy used by high performance athletes, therapy that alternates them between extreme heat (via a sauna or hot tub) to extreme cold ( ice bath or cold bath) for several cycles, each just a few minutes. It’s a process that you couldn’t really experience in the comfort of your home unless you have, well, a sauna and a cold tub. The X is about to change that.
Why contrast therapy works
The contrast therapy process doesn’t sound like fun, and yes, it is quite heavy and uncomfortable. Traditionally, you would hang out in a sauna for a few minutes and then run straight into a cold plunge. And yes, that’s as shocking as it sounds. You would do this for at least 8-10 minutes, working those tight cycles and essentially battling the extremely hot and cold temperatures.
I did, and I can tell you it’s no fun. I like my body at ideal temperatures – I don’t like lounging in the sauna and struggle with treatments like cryotherapy and cold dives. But when I worked on the contrast therapy, I enjoyed the results the next day.
Essentially, each trip to the cold bath causes your blood vessels to constrict, restricting blood flow. Then you head to the hot tub or sauna, and the extreme heat causes your blood vessels to dilate quickly, allowing more blood flow throughout your body. The alternation of these two processes stimulates tremendous circulation, and this circulation and blood flow helps boost nutrients, metabolites, and healing factors throughout the body.
You may have felt this at times as well. Ever been shoveling snow in freezing weather, then come back into the house and run water over your hands to warm them up? And do you feel a huge rush of blood to your fingers? This same idea occurs during contrast therapy.
The challenge of course: you just have to survive it. And you also have to have time for that. Contrast therapy isn’t something you can do while playing video games or watching TV – it’s 10-15 minutes more on your busy day where you’ll need to focus on, well, not completely relax. It’s work.
Hyperice X makes contrast therapy accessible
That’s where the Hyperice X comes in. The little device looks like a black sleeve with tiny fans attached to it, and my comic book fan side could very easily see that sleeve on, say, the bionic right arm. of Sebastian Stan’s Winter Soldier.
The simplicity of the appearance belies its operation. Once powered on, it’s capable of cooling down to 35 degrees or heating up to 113 degrees, and it can do that quickly. You just slip the sleeve over your knee and open up the base Hyperice app (which has a treasure trove of other recovery benefits these days, by the way). Pair the device with the app and access the library of Hyperice X preset programs.
Select ‘contrast therapy’ and your X goes to work in silence, alternating intervals of heating and cooling along your knee. It’s soft and extremely simple, a key force for X.
You don’t need to go through a complicated process. For the past few weeks, I have been using it on leg days, several hours after training. I’m going to tie the X on my left knee (I tore my ACL in that knee in college), get my feet up on the couch, and start NBA 2K22 on the Xbox. Halfway through the first quarter (I play full 12 minute quarters, by the way) the program will be over and I won’t even realize it (that’s how subtle the device is) .
Halfway through the game, I’m going to put the X on my right knee and start the contrast therapy program again. No, I didn’t hurt my right knee, but it’s more than a pain management device; it is good to do a quality recovery job whenever you can.
And I can do that with the X very easily, without disrupting the rest of my evening, so I run the program on my right knee and keep playing 2K22.
How does the X feel
Traditional contrast therapy is generally whole body therapy. It’s not like you put, say, your knee in a cold tub and then put your knee in a sauna. And because of that, I was a little skeptical about the X. Would that really do anything for my knee?
And no, the device doesn’t really have the same feel as conventional contrast therapy. This, of course, is a strength. Contrast therapy takes work, concentration, and a bit of mental toughness.
The Hyperice X doesn’t demand any of these, and yet it’s still nice. The heat it delivers is gentle; 113 degrees is enough to create a pleasant feeling of warmth on your knee. The only time you realize the X is on is when it starts to cool down. The 5 small fans on its surface begin to hum softly, rotating to quickly cool your knee. It’s an almost silent hum. At first, as I described in the video above, I was worried that the buzz would get “boring”. But it’s much quieter than many massage guns, and it never reaches a level that interferes with my playing or watching movies.
When the X cools your knee, it’s cold but never unbearable, despite only being 12 degrees above zero. It is unquestionably a force of porn. You don’t want to come home from a long day of work or training and suffer from your “recovery”.
With Hyperice X, you don’t suffer. You have just come home, relax and enjoy the mixture of hot and cold. And when it’s over, when I finish each session and release the X, my knee is just a little more relaxed, a little less strained.
The X will continue to grow too
This is of course how I use the X, but it has several other uses as well. And that’s part of what makes the device so special.
Of course, it is designed for contrast therapy, but since it can heat and cool as well, it can easily be used for other purposes as well. Store ice packs in your freezer? Throw them away, as the X can handle this task as well. Heating pillow? The X can also fulfill this role. In addition to contrast therapy, it is an all-in-one device for heating and cooling, and Hyperice is gradually releasing more programs on its app to facilitate this, from pain relief to relaxing heat on the go. by warm-up programs before exercise.
The technology behind the X can also work on more than just your knee; remember, classic contrast therapy is a full body treatment. The X is designed specifically for your knee in terms of shape and fit, but I also experienced it on my shoulders after tough chest workouts, and placed it on my quads as well. This allows me to achieve this contrasting effect in other areas, and while the X is not specifically designed for these locations, it has been effective so far.
No matter how you use it or where you use it, you will almost certainly enjoy the experience and the ease of use too. It’s a device that travels well, which means you can take it on a trip or take it out on the sidelines of a basketball game. It replaces your ice pack, a heating pad and (most impressive) a sauna and cold bath.
It’s hard not to like it.
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