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The Benefits of Wearing Knee Sleev

November 14, 20233 min read

You probably see people at BFP wearing knee sleeves, so what’s the deal?  Let’s discuss the benefits of wearing knee sleeves and why they may be a good fit for you.

Let me begin by saying that knee sleeves are not the same as knee braces. A knee brace is designed specifically to protect a previous injury from further endangerment.  Maybe you don’t want your knee to bend all the way or you need hefty support, a knee brace can help limit what range your knee bends.  On the flip side, knee sleeves are designed to protect the knee from future injury while providing some support. Knee sleeves will give you the ability to put your knee through full range movements.  

With all that being said, if you are dealing with pain and discomfort already, let’s address that issue first.  Either we need to work on better movement patterns, improve your mobility, or seek out a physician. The last thing you want to do is cover up “real pain” because the knee sleeve would be a temporary fix, but not a permanent solution to the underlying issue.  So I suggest talking with a coach.   

When training at BFP, on days that we use movements (squats, lunges, etc...) that involve the knees, it can put your knees under immense pressure and strain.  Especially if you’re moving some weight. This can increase the risk of injury over time, especially when repeated over and over. In my opinion, it doesn’t matter who you are, or how much you train, the fact is we are all vulnerable to injury, especially in the knees.  Like I mentioned earlier, if you don’t have an underlying issue, the knee sleeve is designed to reduce the risk of injury and reduce any pain when lifting. That’s a win-win in my book!     

Here are some reasons why a knee sleeve can be beneficial

  1. Knee sleeves add a valuable compression element that increases blood flow and help reduces swelling, not only during a workout but after as well (if you wear them outside the gym).  Think of the compression from the sleeve as a warm, snuggly hug for your knees.  

  2. Knee sleeves are going to provide warmth around the joint and in return keep the blood circulating.        

  3. Knee sleeves will help limit patella movement, so if you deal with an unstable patella, a knee sleeve may help. 

Ok, so you want to grab yourself a pair.  Now, what kind do you need?

Knee sleeves are generally made from neoprene material (wetsuit feel) or cloth material and they slide on over the knee.  Knee sleeves can come in different thicknesses and they are measured by millimeters. Personally, I own a cloth pair that are 5mm thick and a neoprene pair that are 7mm thick.  I use the cloth sleeves for light lower body exercises or heavy running workouts. I use the neoprene sleeves for my heavy lifting workouts (squats, cleans, etc…). You need to decide what fits your needs.  

On a side note, one thing about knee sleeves is that they can start to smell funky if you don’t wash them once in a while or let them air out after a workout.  Don’t just throw them into your gym bag because they will stink!    

I hope this helps and if you see someone wearing a pair at BFP, go ask them what they think or ask a coach!  

Coach Silas

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Breakaway Fitness & Performance

Breakaway Fitness & Performance focuses on strength training, weight loss, and a healthy lifestyle in their blogs.

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