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A (Somewhat) Fitness Girlie's Thoughts On Hyperice's Recovery Tools

BRB, living like Naomi Osaka and Patrick Mahomes... kind of.

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As much as I consider myself a fitness girl in theory, I also cherish any excuse to make working out more bearable. Enter: recovery tools.

You know how instructors will talk about the importance of stretching (even if you never actually do it)? That can mean something as simple as doing a toe touch and runner’s lunge on a mat — or, for pro athletes and people who have access to them, using actual devices built to help your body bounce back.

I’ve long been intrigued by tools made for exercise recovery, especially since I ran a marathon in 2019 and barely staved off injury in the process. When tennis it girl Naomi Osaka partnered with Hyperice (coincidentally the same year of my race), it put the brand on the map for me — so I was excited to get to try the latest offerings during a recent trip to Tokyo, Japan with Westin Hotels & Resorts.

I may not play professional tennis like Osaka, but I could definitely use some help with my post-workout regimen so I don’t end up constantly sore after my 20-minute Peloton rides. Hyperice also works with with other big names like Patrick Mahomes and Olympic runner Colleen Quigley, so it comes highly recommended by the pros — but it’s also a splurge, with most items costing several hundred dollars.

Here are my thoughts on a few top Hyperice products and whether they’re worth the hype, especially for normies like me whose only connection to professional tennis is watching Challengers over and over.

The Massager Is Intense... In A Good Way

Fast Facts:

  • Price: $199
  • What this is best for: Relieving muscle tightness after a workout or travel day.
  • What I like: Pretty much everything. It’s powerful without being too loud, the percussion settings are adjustable (as well as the head attachments), and it’s just the right size and weight to hold in your hand.
  • What I don’t like: If you’re looking for a chill, relaxing post-workout massage, this isn’t the vibe — but it *will* sort out those sore muscles ASAP.
  • My rating: 5/5

Think of this like a tiny deep tissue massage therapist you take on the go. The Hypervolt has five different percussive speed settings, and you place it on your tight muscles to work out any kinks or tightness. You can use this before or after a workout, or take it with you on a trip to relieve soreness after a long flight or drive.

Sarah Ellis
Sarah Ellis

The sensation takes some getting used to at first — it’s not painful, but it’s also not exactly comfortable. And it’s not supposed to be! It feels like someone digging their elbow into your tight muscles to work out the tension. The device comes with five different-shaped heads you can swap out; the flat-topped one works best for me because it’s less intense than some of the others.

During the demonstration we got from the Hyperice team, I learned my personal favorite way to use this: with a friend targeting the back of your neck like a shoulder massage. You can almost feel it vibrating in your head, which is a little weird, but that spot is an important one to address for anyone who sits at a computer all day long.

The Vibrating Foam Roller Is Fun (But Kinda Painful) To Use

Fast Facts:

  • Price: $199
  • What this is best for: Foam rolling... but make it spicy because it vibrates.
  • What I like: The vibrations help target your sore muscle tissue really effectively. It hurts a little, but in a way you’ll be used to if you’ve used a regular foam roller before.
  • What I don’t like: The rolling/vibrating combo makes it tricky to keep in place and control.
  • My rating: 4/5

This is probably the most familiar-looking item to other workout gear you’ve seen. It looks and feels like a foam roller, but it has three different vibration speeds to take the intensity up a notch. I actually found it fun to use and less painful than a regular foam roller, maybe because the vibrations help distract from how it’s working out your muscle tightness.

I find this particularly useful for leg and hip mobility after running or cycling, so it’s something I would reach for after my morning Peloton ride. I’d recommend consulting Hyperice’s YouTube channel for specific moves to do with each product to maximize their beneficial effects.

Sarah Ellis

The one thing I struggled with about the Vyper 3 was that it moves around *a lot*. If you take the pressure of your body off of it, it will roll/vibrate across the floor. This isn’t a super big deal, but it’s worth noting if you’re in a tight space surrounded by other people.

The Compression Boots Are A Luxury Experience — & Actually Relaxing

Fast Facts:

  • Price: $799
  • What this is best for: A blissful, full-body recovery experience.
  • What I like: I am in love with these, truly. They’re genuinely relaxing to use after a tough workout, and they make my sore legs feel brand new after 30 minutes.
  • What I don’t like: The price. These are next-level expensive, even compared to the rest of Hyperice’s product line.
  • My rating: 5/5

The Normatec Boots are Hyperice’s most unique and distinctive product — they look like the bottom half of an astronaut suit you’d put on to go to space. They run the length of your full leg (I’m 5’7” and they’re almost too long for me... so shorter folks, be aware of that detail).

They also require zero effort while you’re using them, so they’re a dream for lazy girls. You put on the boots, power them up, lie back, and let the compression technology go to work for a preset period of time (30 minutes is standard). It’s hard to describe the sensation, but it doesn’t hurt at all — it’s more like short, gentle squeezes moving up and down your leg. I can only go up to level three of seven before the compression feels too uncomfortable, though.

Sarah Ellis
Sarah Ellis

These Normatec Legs are actually the one Hyperice item I owned before my trip to Japan. I had coveted a pair for years, and long story short, I had a healthcare savings account with money that was going to expire. I splurged on them (because the money was already there — girl math), and they’ve been a beloved part of my post-workout relaxation regimen ever since. I prop myself up with pillows on my bed and read a book while I’m using them.

I can’t necessarily tell you to go all-in on the $800 price tag if you’re not a professional athlete with serious recovery needs. Still, if you get the chance to grab these on sale or end up with a savings account situation similar to mine, I can tell you they are really as great as everyone says.

The Rolling Massage Ball Is Small But Mighty

Fast Facts:

  • Price: $99
  • What this is best for: A portable, budget-friendly device perfect for Hyperice beginners.
  • What I like: The size makes it super versatile, and it targets specific muscles more directly than the Vyper foam roller.
  • What I don’t like: Like the Vyper, it will move around if you aren’t holding onto it.
  • My rating: 4.5/5

The tiniest product in the lineup, this massage ball comes in two sizes: standard and mini (I tried the latter). I used it primarily to work out the tension in my feet, but you can put it anywhere on your body that needs muscle relief — one brand photo shows someone sitting in a chair and using the Hypersphere Go to massage their back.

Sarah Ellis

I love this device because it’s easy to take with you anywhere, and it’s sneakily powerful despite its small size. You can really target each muscle directly, as opposed to the Vyper, which has a broader surface area and works on multiple sore spots at once.

The price point makes this the most accessible offering from the brand, so it’s a good way to try out Hyperice technology without spending multiple hundreds of dollars.

Final Thoughts

Consider me impressed! I was already familiar with Hyperice before trying out this whole lineup, but I’m even more of a fan now. I can see why the pros love this brand — everything is ergonomic and user-friendly, and the technology feels really unique. You can tell the Hyperice team puts thought and intention behind their creations, and the brand’s partnered with plenty of athletes at the top of their game who can vouch for them, too.

The price point is something to consider, but given all the tech that goes into making these, I do think they’re worth the splurge if you can swing it. They’re not crucial recovery tools for everyone (we’re not all competing in the U.S. Open or the Super Bowl, after all), but if you’re a fitness girlie who has had their eye on something like this, I don’t think you’ll regret taking the hit.