Intermittent Pneumatic Compression (IPC)


Intermittent Pneumatic Compression (IPC)

IPC is the application of controlled external pressure using compressed air and a pump, which cyclically inflates and deflates the chambers within a specially designed sleeve that envelops the extremity. This cyclic inflation and deflation mimics calf muscle pump action and can promote venous return, reduce eodema, stimulate fibrinolysis, and heal recalcitrant ulcers (1)

Commercial IPC devices utilise whole-leg sleeves that operate by inflating and deflating a series of zones using inflation pressures (~20–100 mm Hg).

IPC has been shown to exert localised vasoactive effects and improve post-exercise lactate clearance, IPC devices are also putatively analogous to a lower-limb massage which has been shown to decrease exercise-induced inflammatory signalling.

Therefore recent benefits for IPC have shown to;

  • Reduce inflammation
  • Improve circulation
  • Reduce muscle soreness
  • Speed recovery•
  • Increase flexibility and range-of-motion for the lower extremities after workouts
  • Enhance blood flow and dynamic compression that ensures that fluids leave the limbs after intense workouts

NormaTec Recovery System – Product Review and Science Update

 How does it work?

The NormaTec Pulse Massage Pattern

The most important element for effective compression is the massage pattern. NormaTec's founder, Laura F. Jacobs, MD, PhD, a physician bioengineer, realised this fundamental principle when she developed and patented the Sequential Pulse Pneumatic Waveform.

Unlike more simplistic compression patterns, NormaTec Pulse Technology is based on normal physiology, and it synergistically combines three distinctive massage techniques to speed the body’s normal recovery process: pulsing compression,13 gradients, and distal release. Through these mechanisms, the NormaTec Recovery System maximises circulation throughout the body to help you train harder, recover faster, and perform better.

Created by a physician bioengineer (MD, PhD) to enhance blood flow and speed recovery, NormaTec Pulse Massage Pattern employs three key techniques to maximise your recovery:


Who should use NormaTec Dynamic Compression?

  • Amateur Athletes. High level athletes ALL use NormaTec pre & post-workout and pre & post-event to enhance performance and accelerate recovery. All NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB professional and NCAA teams utilize NormaTec compression technology for their athletes. The US Olympic team and many high level athletes utilize NormaTec compression systems.
  • Individuals looking to mobilise and detoxify fat, cellulite and inflammation from their bodies.
  • Individuals looking to minimise and prevent varicose and spider veins.
  • Post-operative patients looking to accelerate recovery.
  • Individuals looking to minimise risk for deep vein thrombosis.
  • Individuals with
    1. lymphedema;
    2. poor circulation and/or diabetes;
    3. venous insufficiency;
    4. oedema of any kind;
    5. post-operative swelling and inflammation;
    6. risk for deep vein thrombosis and embolism;
    7. with contusions and other injuries, looking to accelerate recovery;
    8. with chronic, non-healing wounds and/or cellulitis.

What is Lymphedema?

Lymphedema is swelling that may occur in arms or legs, usually after lymph node removal or damage during cancer treatment. It can lead to skin infections and interfere with activities of daily living but can be treated effectively with cryotherapy and NormaTec dynamic compression.

What are Chronic, Non-Healing Wounds?

Poor circulation in the legs, often due to diabetes, can cause non-healing wounds and cellulitis. Cryotherapy combined with NormaTec can effectively treat chronic wounds and reduce wound recurrence.

What is Venous Insufficiency

Venous Insufficiency, where blood flow through the veins is impaired, can lead to swelling, pain, varicose veins, and even ulcers. Cryotherapy, infrared sauna and NormaTec helps restore circulation and treats venous insufficiency.

What is Prevention of DVT?

Deep vein thrombosis, a blood clot in a vein deep in the body. Research has shown that DVT can be prevented with regular use of the NormaTec dynamic compression system.

Other Vascular Disorders

NormaTec dynamic compression therapy improves circulation and can help treat many other vascular disorders.


Click here to check out our NoramTec Range 


(1) Bonnie J. Sparks-DeFriese,Chapter 29 - Vascular Ulcers,Editor(s): Michelle H. Cameron, Linda G. Monroe, Physical Rehabilitation, W.B. Saunders, 2007, Pages 777-802, ISBN 9780721603612,

(2) Haun CT, Roberts MD, Romero MA, Osburn SC, Mobley CB, Anderson RG, Goodlett MD, Pascoe DD, Martin JS. Does external pneumatic compression treatment between bouts of overreaching resistance training sessions exert differential effects on molecular signaling and performance-related variables compared to passive recovery? An exploratory study. PLoS One. 2017 Jun 29;12(6):e0180429. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0180429. PMID: 28662152; PMCID: PMC5491247.