Compex Muscle Stimulator Review

Compex Sport Elite Muscle Stimulator Review

Whether you’re exercising as an athlete, suffer from muscle pain or you simply want to look your best, it’s always handy to find faster ways to achieve your goals, right?

So should the range of Compex Sport Elite or one of their other muscle stimulators be on your shopping list? With this Compex review we want to help you make an informed decision.

To start with the Compex company is a market leader in muscle stimulators. That’s because their product range is backed by 30 years of experience. This doesn’t only relate to muscle stimulation but also physiotherapy, pain treatment and sports training. You may also want to look into our inversion table reviews.

Based on this the company produces various products to help with athletes and fitness enthusiasts stimulate their muscle fibers. Should their muscle stimulators that use EMS Electro Muscle Stimulation be something you need to consider?

Why Use Muscle Stimulators? 

Muscle stimulators provide electrotherapy in the form of EMS. This happens when electrodes send impulses to affect blood flow as well as cause muscles to contract and relax which stimulates your muscle fibers. This is a continuous cycle that stimulates and strengthens. It can also minimize inflammation.

This is close to normal exercising so - in conjunction with normal exercise - it has these benefits:

Compex Performance 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 6 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 3 strength, 1 warm-up, 1 recovery, 1 TENS
  • Increasing strength
  • Minimize damage to muscles and joints
  • You feel less fatigued after training because it counters inflammation
  • Less inflammation also means you recover super quick

TENS Capabilities:

The Compex Sport Elite and their full range of models not only incorporates EMS but TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation). While EMS is used primarily for muscle strengthening, TENS uses micro current pulses. This can effectively treat pain. This is done by blocking some pain signals from reaching the brain.

Applying this to certain areas can give localized pain relief. This makes recovery easier or can give patients who suffer from intense muscle pain temporary reprieve while the body still heals.

This feature can now be found in all the Compex models as you’ll see in their reviews below.

Compex Sport Elite and Other Compex Models:

A popular model in the Compex range is the Compex Sport Elite. It’s sought after because it pushes boundaries. Apart from helping your muscles warmup and stimulating your muscle fibers it can also help increase your endurance - this is what EMS can do - this model can build strength through the more advanced technology it offers.

It’s much superior to the Edge 2.0 model since it targets strength training unlike the Edge which only helps with basic recovery and resistance. The Sport Elite is also better than the Performance 2.0 model which can help with building strength, but not explosive strength. The Sport Elite can also provide recovery and relaxation settings which the more basic units do not have. These can give you a competitive advantage.

The Sport Elite is similar to the Compex’s wireless 2.0 model, but it still uses electrodes instead of wireless pods.

Compex Sport Elite 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 10 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 4 strength, 2 warm-up, 3 recovery, 1 TENS

Compex Sport Elite 2.0

Do muscle stimulators work?

Muscle stimulators such as the Compex Sport Elite, have been used effectively for years in sports environments and even in the medical arena. They help to simulate different types of muscle movements. This can be a more comfortable manner to warm up or it can help with recovery if it’s difficult to move your entire body.

When added to a regular training regimen it can improve results - toning, strengthening or firming - because it causes muscles to work more. Along with strenuous exercise they help athletes build muscle as they assist with effective warmups and help prevent and heal injuries. Athletes can then exercise harder than usual when using this muscle stimulator kit.

What it can’t do is help burn fat. If used in isolation these minor muscle movements sparked by EMS won’t influence fat burning in the body.

Are electronic muscle stimulators safe?

Some EMS models are FDA approved and used in medical environments. As long as they’re used according to the instructions they’re safe for personal use. If any signs of wear and tear appear it’s best to replace the electrodes or pads.

Comparing Compex Muscle Stimulator Models:

Compex Wireless USA 2.0

Compex Sport Elite 2.0

Compex Performance 2.0

Compex Edge 2.0

Compex Wireless USA 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: 16 Snap Electrodes, 10 Programs, Wireless PODs, Charge Station / 4 strength, 2 warm-up, 3 recovery, 1 TENS
Compex Sport Elite 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 10 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 4 strength, 2 warm-up, 3 recovery, 1 TENS
Compex Performance 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 6 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 3 strength, 1 warm-up, 1 recovery, 1 TENS
Compex Edge 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 4 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 2 strength, 1 recovery, 1 TENS

Programs:

10

Programs:

10

Programs:

6

Programs:

4

Levels of Progression:

3

Levels of Progression:

5

Levels of Progression:

5

Levels of Progression:

5

95 Hertz

95 Hertz

95 Hertz

95 Hertz

Programs:

Endurance,

Resistance,

Strength,

Explosive Strength,

Pre-Warm Up,

Active 

Recovery Plus/Competition Recovery,

Massage/Muscle Relaxation,

Potentiation, 

TENS

Programs:

Endurance,

Resistance,

Strength,

Explosive Strength,

Pre-Warm Up,

Active Recovery

Recovery Plus/Competition Recovery,

Massage/Muscle Relaxation,

Potentiation, 

TENS

Programs:

Endurance,

Resistance,

Strength,

Pre-Warm Up,

Active Recovery

TENS

Programs:

Endurance,

Resistance,

Active Recovery

TENS

Compex Wireless USA 2.0


This product is something consumers consider when they’re looking for a balance between convenience and power. It’s still very dynamic and you also get:

  • Portability
  • Comfort because instead of electrodes it connects wirelessly to pods placed on your skin
  • Easy storage in your luggage because it’s lightweight

You have a range of 10 programs to pick from. What’s great is that the whole family can use this or you can incorporate it into many different training regimes. There are programs for:

  • Strength
  • Recovery
  • Warm ups
  • TENS for pain relief

This takes it one step further than many other stimulators because you can build your muscles with strength training, instead of simply maintaining them or helping to heal injuries.

The muscle stimulators that run at low frequencies can even be used for relaxation after an exercise session. Users are advised to alternate between 2x4 and 2x2 electrodes to determine which give the best treatment, based upon your unique requirements. 

Compex Wireless USA 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: 16 Snap Electrodes, 10 Programs, Wireless PODs, Charge Station / 4 strength, 2 warm-up, 3 recovery, 1 TENS

This model is also approved by the FDA which gives many consumers peace of mind.

Specs:

  • Weight: 1lb
  • Dimensions: 4.2”x 2.8”x 0.8”
  • Number of programs: 10
PROS
  • Small and light to carry
  • Wireless technology
  • ​FDA approved
  • ​Multiple programs
CONS
  • Different screen layout than other Compex products; may take a while to get used to

Compex Sport Elite 2.0


This is very similar to the Compex Wireless 2.0 muscle stimulator. It has many of the same features such as helping with relaxation which not all the Compex units are designed for.

The Sport Elite 2.0 is also different than many other wired units because it doesn’t stop at helping athletes with resistance training. It goes one step further with its ability to help improve strength. But not simply strength; explosive strength. This makes it a viable option for serious athletes’ shopping lists. You can have an instant way to enhance your workout results. 

While you can’t connect wirelessly this is still a great device because the interface is so easy to manage and it’s still quite compact. If you do need assistance to find out more about attaching all the components you’ll find help online. The wires are color coded to make it easier to use as well.

The unit comes with a carry bag so it’s easy for athletes to make it part of their regular gear, without the chance of the electrodes getting damaged during transport. 

Compex Sport Elite 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 10 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 4 strength, 2 warm-up, 3 recovery, 1 TENS

A word of caution is to start using this at a low setting at first. The high level stimulation may feel good but you don’t want to injure yourself by starting with too much too soon. In due time you can use the five levels of progression designed to help you improve systematically.

Specs:

  • Weight: 1lb
  • Dimensions: 5.4”x 3.8” x 1”
  • Number of programs: 10
PROS
  • Helps with lactic acid buildup
  • 2 year warranty
  • ​Small enough to fit in your hand
  • Helps build strength
CONS
  • Not using wireless technology
  • No belt clip to carry it on you

Compex Performance 2.0


When shopping for your muscle stimulator relevancy matters. You need a device designed for what your situation requires. Here you have the same look as the Sport Elite 2.0 but the focus is quite different. You can build your strength but not quite at the level of strength some sports require.

Using the provided electrodes—this is not a wireless unit—the current can affect blood flow and muscles. With the Compex Performance 2.0 the different settings can help with:

  • Endurance
  • Resistance
  • Strength
  • Warmup
  • Recovery but not relaxation

As with all Compex units you can counter the pain after a workout with the TENS pain management feature. This makes it a training but also an after care device.

The six programs include:
  • Three for strength training
  • One for warmup
  • One for recovery
  • One for TENS

You can customize your experience further with the the different levels of progression.

All of this is managed via an easy to understand interface on the unit that’s barely bigger than a man’s hand. You can opt to use it at home, but the compact design makes it easy to pop into your training bag.

It takes a while to figure out where the best places are to place the pads on your body. Users should take time, adjust their placement and compare the impact of the different positions.

Compex Performance 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 6 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 3 strength, 1 warm-up, 1 recovery, 1 TENS

Specs:

  • Weight: 1lb
  • Dimensions: 5.2”x 3.8”x 1”
  • Number of programs: 6a
PROS
  • Can use before, after or during training sessions
  • Ideal for athletes and other individuals
  • ​Compact enough to carry in backpack; ideal for hiking to counter swollen ankles
CONS
  • Doesn’t incorporate wireless technology

Compex Edge 2.0


The Compex technology works because you can focus on certain muscles at a time instead of over exerting your entire body.

With the Edge 2.0 model the focus is on endurance and resistance, but also recovery and TENS.

The features are helpful to people looking for pain management help. At a more affordable price than high end units—designed for athletes—this is a viable option for anyone wanting to manage pain. The TENS feature can have an impact in as little as five to 10 minutes.

Specs:

  • Weight: 1lb
  • Dimensions: 4.2”x 2.8”x 0.8”
  • Number of programs: 4
Compex Edge 2.0 Muscle Stimulator with TENS Bundle Kit: Muscle Stim, 12 Snap Electrodes, 4 Programs, Lead Wires, Battery, Case / 2 strength, 1 recovery, 1 TENS
PROS
  • Most affordable Compex stimulator
  • Helps with lactic acid buildup
  • Easy to use interface
CONS
  • Not practical for strength building
  • Can’t help with warmups or recovery

Compex Electro Pad Placements

The correct placement of the electro pads is crucial to getting the proper results with each use of Compex’s muscle stimulators. You will need to attach the right pads to the right channels of your Compex device and place them on the correct spots on your body.

For large muscle groups, particularly those around your legs, you will need to attach one large electro pad and two small electro pads on specific spots on each leg. On the quadriceps, for example, you need to attach a large pad on the top side of your thigh, by the insertion point of the muscle. Then, attach two small pads on the vastus lateralis and vastus medialis, which are the muscles on the left and right sides above your knee.

Afterward, it’s all about connecting the right wire to the right sockets on each electro pad. The lead wires included in Compex muscle stimulator units are color-coded to indicate which goes where, while some units have wireless functionality.

Also, take note that the type of electro pad and pad placement varies depending on the muscle group you intend to use your Compex on. Consult your user’s manual on how to properly use your Compex unit for best results.

FAQ:

Q: How long do electrodes last?

A: The longevity of electrodes depends on the make and model of the electrode and the condition of your skin. The latest type of electrodes that Compex releases with their products can last about 15 to 20 sessions under normal conditions. However, if your skin is clean, shaven, and free of grease, then an electrode can last up to 30 sessions.

Q: Can Compex build muscle?

A: Yes, electrically induced muscle stimulation can help build muscle.

Muscle stimulators are primarily designed for rehabilitation, pain treatment, and training. It works by mimicking the electrical signals that your brain sends to your muscles, causing them to contract according to the strength of the electric current.

Different Compex programs send varying levels of current to your muscles. When exposed enough to an electric current, your muscle fibers will adapt on their own, causing them to grow in volume. Using electric muscle stimulators is an excellent way to get an intense muscle workout without having to worry about joint or limb injuries. Professional athletes like Mat Fraser and Lebron James use Compex as part of their training routines.\

Compex is completely safe to use; there are no risks of nervous fatigue, and the non-invasive nature of electrostimulation ensures zero side effects. To get the best results, these devices are best used after actual physical training or before going to bed. 

Q: Is there a warranty?

A: Compex offers a two-year warranty for all of the electric muscle stims, plus an additional one year’s worth of coverage if a certain warranty registration form is filled on their website. The additional warranty period is free of charge and can only be availed before the end of the initial guarantee period.

Final Thoughts:

You can see that Compex provides a model for almost anyone. Whether you’re a committed athlete, an occasional jogger or someone who needs an original way to manage pain, this technology can help. And you can find one that matches your requirements but also your budget. Which one will you pick?

    Kevin Lee

    Health and fitness have always been a passion for me; whether its being in the weight room, going for a run before work or even participating in a half iron man triathlon. ShapeJunkie was created to share to knowledge and love of fitness with others.

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