Product Review: Elevated Legs Recovery System
If you’ve been on a Chasing Epic trip this year, you know that we like to build in some BIG rides for our 4-day itineraries; the second and third day regularly see our clients riding 20-25 miles with over 3,000 feet of climbing… each day. In the real world, most of our clients don’t do those kinds of rides on back to back days, much less ride four days in a row. It’s not easy, we know that. Which is why we’ve partnered with the folks over at Elevated Legs this year, to bring you a recovery option that just might help you crush each successive day harder than the one before.
What Is It?
Elevated Legs is a muscle recovery system, used by top athletes around the country to help them recover faster and more completely. The system is made up of a control unit (seen above), along with two leg “sleeves” that inflate and deflate depending on the program, settings, and resistance you choose. The system is very easily assembled in a matter of minutes, and each session can be 10, 20, or 30 minutes long. You can choose between “recovery” and “massage”; we’re personally big fans of the recovery setting, as it seems to be a more comprehensive program for our mountain bikers.
What’s the Science Behind It?
The sequential intermittent compression provided by Elevated Legs works to increase blood flow and speed up your body’s natural process of removing that post-workout accumulation of metabolic waste and lactate. After big rides, our riders often experience muscles that feel less sore, fresher, looser and less fatigue after a session or two of “being squeezed”. These benefits can help you take full advantage of the next day on the bike; the ability to recover more quickly from hard rides can help you to more effectively and consistently maintain your strength and stamina, and ultimately improve how you feel on the bike.
The Elevated Legs system slowly flushes out the lactate and metabolic waste by cycling increased pressure from your feet up to your quads, and then repeating multiple times over the course of your session. Not only does the blood get flushed through your recovering legs, but the high pressure on your legs also helps massage and loosen the muscles.
Is it Easy to Use?
Yep, absolutely. There are three sets of wires to connect (one for each leg sleeve, and one back to the main unit), and with a little creative color coordination, we’ve got the process down to about two minutes. Once the system is set up, all you have to do is turn it on, choose the program and the length of time, and press Start. It’s that easy.
Once the program starts, you’ve got 20 minutes of leg-massaging relaxation to settle into; we’ve seen multiple clients actually fall asleep while having their legs “squeezed”. Depending on the level of intensity you choose the pressure can be pretty intense, but we’re personally fans of turning it all the way up to “Boost” (10/10)… if only you could turn it up to 11.
Does It Work?
Yeah, we think so. And based on the huge response to using Elevated Legs, we believe our riders do too. We personally use the Elevated Legs system once or twice a week (while we’re not running trips) after a big ride to help recovery. Not only do our legs feel immediately more relaxed and loose, but we find that we’re able to jump on the bike the following day and not feel like we did that big ride the day before. Especially when we’re knocking out huge training rides in the Colorado high country above 10,000 feet.
Depending on the group and the destination, we typically find that there’s a line of riders waiting to use the Elevated Legs by the second night… once they start feeling the pain from the second day’s big ride. On our last trip in Crested Butte, there was a queue of people waiting after dinner, and then the next morning before breakfast too! Based on customer feedback, it’s something that we’ll keep around on trips for years to come, as it helps our clients ride harder, longer, and faster… which means more happy mountain bikers!