One of the best things you can get for extra support during your WOD or weightlifting sessions would be knee sleeves – these are designed to provide you with the perfect amount of support, protection, compression, and warmth to the knee area, while allowing you enough flexibility to make sure you’re still executing exercises in perfect form.
They’re used for any sport or activity where knee support and protection are needed, and they are particularly useful for powerlifters. So you can lift heavy weights and squat with abandon (okay, do NOT squat with abandon, but you will feel that extra support and be more confident doing it!).
Knee sleeves are supposed to be tight, but not tight enough that it impedes your movements. You want them tight enough to give you compressive properties, but not tight enough to “pinch” and cut off circulation.
To get the most out of your knee sleeves, it’s important to know you’re using them right.
So how tight should it be?
First, make sure you have the right size knee sleeves – measure the circumference of your knee (mid patella) using a flexible type of tape measure, keeping your leg straight, and refer to the size chart below.
If you’re in between sizes, say at 14 inches, we would recommend going for the smaller size. In this case, that would be an M for comfort fit instead of an L – you want them tight, not loose – otherwise, how would you get the support and compression you need? Plus, brand spanking new knee sleeves do stretch out just a little bit after a few wears.
What about thickness?
The knee sleeves we have here at Gunsmith Fitness come in two sizes. 5mm is great for general gym use, gymnastics, walking, jogging, running, what have you. This is the more flexible option where agility is important. 7mm is our tougher option, and is great for heavier activities such as weightlifting.
How do you put them on?
Since knee sleeves are tight, it can be a little challenging to put them on. You can slide it up your foot, fold it in half, and then pull it up to the desired area.
You can also slide them on over your foot inside out, pull them to just below your knee, and then flip them over your knee.
Are knee sleeves and knee wraps the same?
Nope. First off, a knee wrap is a piece of durable cloth that you wrap around the knee, while a knee sleeve is a smooth-fitting piece of elastic material you can slip on and off your leg. But beyond this, there are many other differences between knee wraps and sleeves, and one key difference is that knee sleeves help keep your knee warmer during your workout. For more in-depth information on the differences between the two, check out our blog entry Knee Wraps vs. Knee Sleeves For Squats | Best Way to Prevent Injuries?
Get to it!
If you think you should be wearing knee sleeves (yeaahhh… you should), head on over to our shop and check out our Extreme Knee Sleeves to help you perform exercises better (and safer). For other sleeves, wraps, and straps, check out our shop!