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Healing harness

Futuristic names are sometimes used as gimmicky marketing to gloss over designs that are lean on real innovation. Not so with ‘Hyperice’, a two-part healing device for athletes that combines ice with compression to maximize cold therapy.

This design is a clever amalgamation of localised ice, that is kept concentrated on an athlete’s joint or muscle, and an adjustable neoprene jacket that is moulded to shape certain body parts. So there’s a specific compression wrap for shoulders, one for knees, and so on.

The wrap uses 3 mm thick neoprene, which is also used for wet suits. It’s a great, sturdy material which is fitted with hook-and-loop fasteners that make it very easy to adjust the wrap to suit your own body.

Ice is placed in a separate polymer sack that is bonded to the neoprene outer layer and sealed with a specially designed vent. The polymer sack is an anti-microbial bag that is engineered to be as thin as possible.

The seal is where the real innovation lies. A double screw valve prevents water from leaking at all. As the body warms and melts the ice, the sack becomes less effective at transferring cold to the user’s injury. A special button on the valve releases trapped air from the sack.

When the wrap is readjusted, it tightens and then automatically realigns the ice for maximum heat extraction. The designers recommend releasing air every 5 minutes during a 20 minute healing session.

Images and more info on the Hyperice device on the designers’ website]].