The Normatec Go sleeves use the same tech as compression boots to massage the calf muscles and speed up your recovery. They work well and are more portable than full boots, as well as being cheaper, though full boots offer better value unless you’re specifically concerned about your calf muscle recovery.
- Easy to use
- Only targets calf muscles
You can trust Coach We give honest reviews and recommendations based on in-depth knowledge and real-world experience. Find out more about how we review and recommend products.
Unlike the best compression boots, which massage all the muscles in your legs, the Hyperice Normatec Go sleeves (known as Hyperice Normatec Lower Legs in the UK) focus on your calf muscles. This means they’re smaller and more portable than full boots, and in general I found them easier to use.
The compression massage they provide also felt effective in helping to speed up recovery after hard runs, and I enjoyed using the sleeves daily. However, while they are cheaper than full boots such as the Normatec 3 Legs, it’s hard to say the Normatic Go are better value because of their narrow focus on one area of the body.
Hyperice Normatec Go: Price And Availability
The Hyperice Normatec Go launched in October 2023 and cost $399 in the US and £429 in the UK. As a comparison, the Normatec 3 Legs compression boots are $799/£799.
How I Tested These Compression Sleeves
I’ve used the Hyperice Normatec Go almost daily for the past two weeks to help me recover after runs, and have run around 55 miles a week in this period. I have also tested several sets of compression boots, such as the Normatec 3 Legs and Therabody JetBoots.
The Normatec Go are calf sleeves that use air compression to provide a massage that aids circulation and recovery. They have no hoses or an external control unit, with the battery and controls found in pods that sit at the top of each sleeve.
There are three zones that fill with air to massage the calf, and you can set the pressure to one of seven levels and choose between 15, 30, 45 and 60 minutes for your session. The settings can be adjusted during the massage by using the controls on the sleeves, or you can link them via Bluetooth to the Hyperice app and control the sleeves through that.
The sleeves weigh 1.2lb/544g and pack down flat, making them easy to transport. The tightness can be adjusted using the large Velcro section on the sleeves, with a snug fit suggested by Hyperice. You can pause the massage to adjust this fit if required, which I did when first using the sleeves.
Each sleeve is charged separately via a USB-C cable and they last three hours on a charge, with a series of lights on the control unit to show how much power is left. The inside of the sleeves can be wiped down after use if they get damp, though I found they didn’t feel hot during my sessions.
Compared with setting up and using compression boots like the Normatec 3 Legs, it’s a breeze to use these sleeves. They are quick and easy to put on and you can start a session in seconds using the controls on the boots.
Not having hoses or external controls makes the Normatec Go feel more similar to the Therabody JetBoots, which are also wire-free, though the JetBoots are still slightly less convenient to use because they are full boots.
The lower pressure levels are light and I mainly used levels five to seven to massage my calf muscles. The arrival of the sleeves for testing was perfect timing because I’ve been having lower-leg problems after runs, and using compression socks and getting massages from a physio has been helping, so the Normatec Go became a go-to recovery tool after every run. However, even at the highest pressure level, the Normatec Go can’t replicate the intensity of a sports massage digging into the calf.
I enjoyed using the sleeves for the convenience of targeting my calf muscles without using a boot, and it seemed to boost recovery after hard runs in particular since faster runs put more pressure on my calf muscles. Yet, at my training level, they still felt like overkill. I run almost every day, but it feels like you’d need to be logging many more miles than me across different training types to get the most benefit from the Normatec Go.
Is The Hyperice Normatec Go Worth It?
The Hyperice Normatec Go is a niche product, but effective. If you’re someone who has to look after your calf muscles in particular during intense training periods, they are a solution. And that’s especially true if you’re traveling a lot, because they are more portable than compression boots.
However, they are expensive, and compression boots provide more value in targeting the whole lower body without costing significantly more. I’d also say other recovery tools like compression socks and the best massage guns can be used to target your calf muscles well, and at a lower cost.
If you are sold on air compression and the convenience of the hose-less design appeals then I’d recommend the Therabody JetBoots because they are also easier to use than wired compression boots.
Nick Harris-Fry is a journalist who has been covering health and fitness since 2015. Nick is an avid runner, covering 70-110km a week, which gives him ample opportunity to test a wide range of running shoes and running gear. He is also the chief tester for fitness trackers and running watches, treadmills and exercise bikes, and workout headphones.