NormaTec is an innovative tool for enhancing recovery from a wide range of athletic endeavors. Initially used by elite athletes in endurance sports such as marathon running to cycling, NormaTec has been quickly spreading among all fitness levels as a clean, simple yet very effective recovery tool. Now it is becoming more frequently used by competitive olympic weightlifters as well as crossfitters.
Movéo Sport and Rehabilitation Center provides the NormaTec Pro as a treatment tool (or complement to treatment). A patient wears two full-legged boots, which are pumped with air in a given pattern. The generated “dynamic compression” squeezes the lower limbs with a “peristaltic pulse” to increase circulation and reduce edema (Hutchinson, 2014). This helps to speed up the repairing of microtrauma in muscles following strenuous activity. To imagine the sensation, using the NormaTec is similar to “a cross between a compression sock and a massage” (Hutchinson, 2014).
NormaTec is unique from other compression pumps. It uses its patented Sequential Pulse Technology that imitates the physiology of the body. Unlike traditional compression therapy that uses a single pressure, NormaTec uses a dynamic pulse. This mimics and enhances the skeletal muscle pump mechanism which promotes venous return. It propels fluid from the legs towards the heart, flushing the limbs of inflammation and metabolic waste from exercise and stress. While the pulsing pressure works its magic in one area, a static pressure is held just distally. This mechanism is akin to rolling up the end of a toothpaste tube. It prevents backflow and accumulation of fluid in the distal area, allowing maximum pulsing pressure to drive the blood and fluid towards the heart. This is done to replicate the action of one-way valves that are found in the veins.
NormaTec was originally developed to help medical patients with circulatory or edema issues to recover more quickly. It is still widely used in medicine today to aid recovery from disease, injury and surgical procedures. Its effectiveness as an athletic recovery tool has become more and more apparent in recent years as there have been an increasing number of companies creating similar products.
Movéo Sport and Rehabilitation Centre is pleased to offer NormaTec as a part of their treatment options for anyone dealing with fitness related micro trauma, pre/post training recovery, and any physiological condition that involves inflammation or edema.
Gary Robbins, a local elite endurance athlete, used NormaTec most recently in preparation for the H.U.R.T. 100-mile run in Hawaii. He smashed his old course record, finishing strong with a time of 19:35!
“I have been experimenting with the NormaTec for a few months now, having seen that it was used by numerous Olympic athletes in London. So far I use it via Movéo once a week and I schedule my hardest run of the week around my ability to access the NormaTec. The chamber style set up of the compression that flushes out the legs has certainly contributed to much less DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness) and hence faster recovery times and the ability to train harder after a big effort.”
“What I truly love about the NormaTec though is that you don’t have to do anything but sit there and let it work away on your legs. I usually bring in a book or read my favorite blog for the thirty minutes of recovery. I use it every week and I’m saving up for my own so that one day I can hopefully use it on a daily basis. Anything that shows up on Olympic athletes, and medal winning Olympians at that, is certainly something that I want in my own personal repertoire!” – GR
The Canadian National Cycling Team has also been lucky enough to use NormaTec as a regular part of their racing as recovery over the past few years:
“BMX racing is a very high intensity, and high consequence sport. In order to train and perform at my best I put my body thought a lot! It is no surprise then, that a visit to Movéo Sports and Rehab Center is a regular occurrence for me. Dr. Jenn Turner and the rest of the staff make Movéo such a positive and fun environment. They have such a wealth of knowledge in so many different areas and are always on the leading edge with research and technology. Before or after my treatments I often use the NormaTec recovery pants for a full lower body flush. Having the opportunity to use this equipment not only makes my legs feel great, but it also allows Jenn more time to work on the areas that really need it.
Thanks for keeping me on top, especially when I end up up-side-down!
Canadian National BMX Team”
California Strength has a video demonstrating the use of NormaTec MVP which can be seen here. Note that there are slight differences in programming and interface between NormaTec MVP and Pro. For further information, please visit the manufacturer’s website.
Hutchinson, A. (2014, February 5). Putting Normatec to the Test. Retrieved from http://www.runnersworld.com/injury-prevention-recovery/putting-normatec-to-the-test