Knee sleeves are compression garments designed to fit snugly around the knee and bolster its strength and structural integrity.
Knee sleeves are often worn by weight lifters to prevent damage to their knee joint while lifting heavy weights, and by people recovering from injury.
Older individuals also find knee sleeves useful in helping them retain their mobility and in relieving pain from arthritic knees.
8 Benefits Of Knee Sleeves
Our health experts have concluded that the following are the most important benefits of wearing knee sleeves.
1: Knee sleeves provide support.
Whether you’re a world-class weightlifter, a CrossFit (1) enthusiast or an older individual engaged in strength training knee sleeves provide essential support that prevents damage to the knee joint. They’re like an extra layer of healthy tissue that envelops the knee joint and helps it stay properly aligned. All the joints of the leg absorb unreal amounts of force throughout a lifetime. But none more so than the knee (2). As such, anything you can do to mitigate those forces is important.
2: Knee sleeves help prevent injury.
The knee joint is incredibly important (3). It’s also one of those things most of us take for granted until we get hurt. Tear an ACL (4) or dislocate the knee playing sports or working out and you quickly become aware of the central role the knee plays in your everyday life. Working out, and in particular strength training, brings all kinds of unnatural forces to bear on the knee joint. Those forces represent a clear and present danger to your knees. The good news is that danger can be dealt with effectively by using a knee sleeve.
3: Knee sleeves help older individuals retain their mobility.
When it comes to quality of life issues for older folks mobility is one of the biggest (5). Studies have shown that a loss of mobility is tied directly to the development of other health problems in the elderly and a general decline in quality of life (6). Something as simple as knee sleeves that provide pain relief while walking can make a major difference. Being able to walk to the market, work in the yard, and interact with family and friends help the older person stay mentally and emotionally engaged in life.
4: Knee sleeves enable you to perfect your strength training technique.
Strength training can be a boon to older individuals, enhancing their quality of life in numerous ways. But it’s crucial that any strength training is done using proper form. Knee sleeves help promote proper alignment of the legs and reinforce the knee joint against lateral movement. They also help to keep the patella (kneecap) properly positioned. Just remember that knee sleeves alone can’t protect you from injury. The best approach is to start slowly with weights and perfect your technique before you start pushing your boundaries to any serious degree.
5: Knee sleeves provide the confidence to push through boundaries.
Speaking of boundaries… once you have your technique nailed down, you’ll want to see exactly what your body is capable of. And that means encountering and then pushing through boundaries. Because knee sleeves promote proper form, keep the knee warm and keep the blood flowing, you’ll be able to face down those boundaries and push into uncharted territory where the real muscle gain lies waiting.
6: Knee sleeves help to build body awareness.
Sometimes injuries happen simply because a person loses track of the various components of their form. If, for instance, you’re focused on the alignment of your shoulders and neck, you may well lose track of what your knees are doing. Knee sleeves can compensate to some small degree for this type of oversight. But perhaps more importantly, they can provide a subtle reminder that your knees are involved in the lifting process as well. This will help fend off any injuries-by-oversight.
7: Knee sleeves can help improve blood flow.
This is because knee sleeves are a type of compression garment (7). Compression garments are known to help dilate arteries, which leads to improved circulation. Knee sleeves then join compression socks, pantyhose, and other similar items that help prevent deep vein thrombosis, varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency or CVI (8). Not only do knee sleeves help improve blood flow, by doing so they also enable an increased amount of oxygen to travel to the muscles. And this is vitally important if you’re to enjoy optimal benefits from your exercise.
8: Knee sleeves help speed recovery from injury.
Knee sleeves can help speed recovery from injury. There are several ways they do this. First, they help relieve pressure on injured joints, which provides your body the breathing room it needs to heal. Second, as we just mentioned, they help improve blood flow. And blood flow is crucial to the recovery of any bodily tissue, including bone (9). And third, they make it possible to engage in rehabilitation exercises. Exercises you’d likely have to avoid or postpone if you didn’t have knee sleeves available.
Knee sleeves are an important piece of kit for weight lifters. They help ensure stability of the knee while under stress and can prevent damage to the ACL and other components of the knee. But the knee sleeve is not just for weight lifters. Any adult experiencing knee stability issues, who has injured their knee playing sports or in an accident, or who wants to retain their mobility as they get older should consider using knee sleeves.