Now that I’m pushing 40 years old my muscles have dramatically become stiffer and after a workout I am sore for a few days. Especially if it is a leg session in the gym. Gone are the day of rocking up to a basketball game and jumping on court to play a game. I have to now spend 30 minutes warming up and stretching. Additional to this it is advised that anyone playing sport gets a sports massage session in every week. If you work a full time job like me how is that possible? It’s hard unless I take time off during the week. This is where the Compex electrical muscle stimulator has been a god send for me.
History of my injuries
At the time of writing this article I have had knee surgery, shoulder reconstruction, back surgery and plastic surgery on one of my toes. Not to mention all the ligaments in my ankles and wrists that I have torn on multiple occasions. Right now I have a new knee injury that might see me go under the knife. My body has been through the wars.
The reason for my body being in such shape is that I push myself in the gym and on court. I still train hard and it is the only way I know how to be. But all this punishment takes it’s toll. More so when you work a desk job and sit in front of a computer all day.
Major injuries started to surface when I started working full time. I remember the first thing that I got was shin splints that caused my ankles to hurt. It was the first time I got major physio work done. Eventually in 2010 I had my first surgery and had a scope done on my knee. It was a shame as this was the time I made the Guildford Heat team in the British Basketball League.
My diagnosis to prevent further injury is to stretch and make sure I get into massage therapy at least once a week. But I firmly believe that I need to do more than one day a week of massage. I train everyday so my body takes a lot of training volume added to the fact that my job isn’t a regular 9 to 5 it is impossible to schedule time to see physio’s or massage therapists.
This is where the Compex for the last two weeks has made a massive difference in the wellbeing of my body. It is my physio in a pocket. Before I do go on to talk about the Compex unit I want to make it very clear that this unit will remove the need to a physio or any trained healthcare professional. This is a unit to use in addition to professional consultation.
Compex (EMS) Electrical Muscle Stimulation
Prior to starting my new job at DJO Global, one of the world’s largest medical and sports bracing company, I had no idea what electro muscular stimulation was. Nor am I going to pretend to be an expert and explain it. If this has peaked your interest however check out the section on the Compex site for more details.
To give you a basic rundown of what this unit does is use electrical pulses to help relieve muscle pain and soreness. This is exactly what I have been using the Compex for in the last two weeks. Additional to muscle recovery it will also help you build and tone muscle by simulating the exact muscle movements as you would in the gym. It’s really quite impressive!
Compex and basketball
Majority of the use of the Compex for me has been around pain management and massaging sore muscles. I have hooked up the Compex to nearly all of my body and done a massage or pain management session. Each of these sessions run for a little over 20 minutes and you can manually adjust the intensity using the hand controller. I have not been able to go to anywhere near the limit of the intensity as you can set it to 999. On my quads, the most pain tolerant part of my body, I was only able to go to 150.
The Compex is like getting a massage. With the various pulse cycles your muscle gets a very good working out. I’m yet to figure out how to get pressure points on my body a workout using the Compex. Much like a spike or golf ball I haven’t been able to replicate that deep massage. This could well be that I am new to this machine.
In the recent Easter basketball tournament I hooked up a friend to the Compex and ran a recovery session on his sore knee. It was a 3 game day for him and when he took to court after his recovery session he mentioned that his leg felt fresher. I too have been using the Compex after training and games and have felt fresher the next day. For this I have been using the competition recovery mode which stimulates the muscles and dispels the lactic acid.
I really wish I had a Compex 8 years ago when I was trying out for teams in Europe. This unit will be perfect for those travelling around from try out to try out without having a physio on hand. Think about it! All you have to do is hook this up and your recovery session is sorted on the train ride back to your hotel. So many times I’d have a really good training session and the next day such because I was so tired. I’m having one of those “where have you been all my life” moments. With every upcoming basketball game and road trip the Compex will be the first thing I pack.
I have seen the biggest difference after a leg session in the gym. Usually I have a huge issue with DOMS (delayed onset of muscle soreness) and 48 hours after my legwork out I lack proper mobility. After running a competition recovery session after training and the day after I am good as new in less than 24 hours after training.
Versions of the Compex unit
The version that I was given to trial is the top of the range Compex 8.0 and this will be the exact unit that I buy. The Compex units are not cheap, the one I am using is $1725 but when you add up all the costs of a massage therapist the units price can be justified.
For example, $30 per hour for masseuse, x 2 hours a day, x 7 days a week = $420 a week. Within about a month of massage you would have been able to buy the top of the range Compex unit.
For more information on the different versions of the Compex and which one suits you the best. Visit the Compex Ausutralia site https://au.compexstore.com/product/range.
My training has dramatically changed since using the Compex just because my recovery time is much less than before. At my age that is the one defining factor keeping me sharp; the ability to recover faster. Additional to this I have implemented a physio and a good diet. I’m hoping all these changes will keep me on the court for a little longer. Who knows, maybe this is the first step to coming out of retirement.
Disclaimer: I work for the Company that is the distributor of Compex. However, I didn’t get paid nor did I get any favours to write this article. I decided to let everyone know about it as it is a great tool to keep you on court feeling fresh. I hope you all get as much as I did out of it. Safe ballin!