Why Wear Knee Sleeves? The Peril of Dismissing Knee Sleeves

Why wear knee sleeves is a good question for anyone involved in active sports, getting over an injury, interested in preventing knee injuries, or dealing with osteoarthritis in their knees.

One reason why we wear knee sleeves is to stabilize the joint and surrounding muscles and tendons. That helps protect them from injuries during high stress movements. Because knees are very vulnerable, injuries such as blown ACLs, PCLs, MCLs, or torn cartilage are prevalent.

However, wearing knee sleeves does much more than that.

Osteoarthritis of the knees affects millions of people all over the world, both young and old. The same knee sleeves add stabilization, support, and aid in pain relief for arthritis. They keep people up and active that would otherwise be confined to chairs and knee surgeries.

So whether you’re engaged in a competitive sport, running or walking for exercise, or need more stability on a trip to the mall — knee sleeves are there to help.

Why Wear Knee Sleeves?

Good sleeves act as a compression element encircling your entire knee joint. They protect your knees from injury while increasing blood flow to reduce pain during and after any physical activity.

Here’s why you wear knee sleeves:

  • Reduce the risk of injury from excessive pressure and strain from exercise, sports, work, etc.
  • Provide great support and alignment
  • Pain relief from injured, sore, tired, arthritic knees
  • Improve balance and a sense of where your knees are at all times

Which Sleeves are the Best?

Some are made primarily for one end result such as:

  • Weight lifting
  • Running, jogging, or walking
  • Support for injured knees
  • To keep active with arthritic knees

Even though any one type or model can be utilized for many purposes, you may not get the best results that way.

For instance, the ones made for powerlifters are usually thicker and more rigid than one designed to wear when running. Now that you have a better idea why so many people wear knee sleeves, let’s see how to chose the right one for your own needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do They Work?

Of course, they work! Are they magic and cure all knee ailments? Of course not! They are for people who want to invest a few dollars to take every precaution against knee injury.

And people who have sore, injured, or arthritic knees who want pain relief and the ability to stay active. They work to provide stability and protection to weak knees and knees involved in sports, athletics, and other activities that stress knees.

Why Should I Wear Knee Sleeves?

They are designed and used to help you protect knees with previous and future injuries. They work by keeping a constant compression factor on the knee joint, muscle tissue, tendons and ligaments surrounding it.

The compression element is for increasing blood flow and circulation to the area. The increased blood flow works to reduce pain and swelling from activities that are particularly hard on knees. At the same time, the compression acts to stabilize the joint, the patella and increases proprioception.

How To Measure For The Best Fit?

Correct and accurate measuring is a must to realize the benefits of your purchase. Each manufacturer has its own standards, specifications, and directions for accurate measurement.

90% of the dissatisfied customers are those who did not take the directions seriously enough to make accurate measurements per the manufacturer. For the best and most accurate measurement, use an inexpensive (one dollar) seamstress measuring tape exactly how and where the directions advise. The best practice when falling on a division line is to order the smaller size.

How Do I Wash My Knee Sleeves?

Read the directions! However, most cloth knee-sleeves (but not all) can be machine washed BUT not machine dried. So wash and air dry. If you can’t machine wash them, throw ’em in the sink with a mild detergent and scrub away.

If your sleeves are neoprene the directions might say do not machine wash. I wash mine in the machine anyway with a very light detergent and air dry inside out. If the smell gets out of hand do this: 1. Boil them for 4-5 minutes, remove from heat, add light detergent and let them soak for a few minutes before rinsing thoroughly. You can also soak them in hot water and vinegar.

Can I Wear Them All Day?

I often wear mine all day when I’m on my feet all day. The added support makes my knee feel comfortable all day and I avoid the soreness that follows when I don’t.

However, if you find yourself wearing your Knee Sleeve all day for chronic pain, you probably need to consult a physician. A qualified specialist would be in a better position to let you know what’s going on with your knee, and maybe suggest a knee brace instead.

Can I Wear Them When I Sleep?

A knee sleeve should fit tight enough to allow for compression, but not so tight that it’s uncomfortable or digging into your legs at the top and bottom bands.

With that in mind, most people have no problem sleeping in them, even though they are designed to help blood flow while you are moving around. So be sure yours isn’t too tight and cutting off circulation when you sleep in them.

Why Should I Use Them For Squats?

When you are squatting and standing with weights on your shoulders you are definitely putting an abnormal amount of weight and pressure on your knees. When correctly fitted they will help reduce pain, soreness, and inflammation that is common to squatting.

Quality neoprene sleeves will aid in blood circulation to keep your knees warm helping to prevent serious injury. And there is the possibility that you can lift more.

Which Ones Should I Buy?

First of all, think through what you expect to gain from wearing them. When you purchase quality you are purchasing a product that has been manufactured with a specific end purpose in mind.

The ones for arthritis will not be the same product as those for weight lifting. Both of those are made with keeping the patella in place in mind. However, some people need an open patella sleeve. I’ve tried to save money with generic brands and wound up with nothing, so my advice is to buy brand names with history, reputation, and reviews.

Are They Good For Arthritis

They have been around the sports and athletics world for years, but are now becoming a popular item for arthritis in the knees. When osteoarthritis starts taking away the cartilage in knees it leaves you with pain, muscle soreness, and unsure steps.

I stay active with arthritis thanks to my sleeves. I can walk or jog every day without feeling like my knee is about to collapse and without the soreness and pain that comes without them. My opinion is that they are too inexpensive NOT to try one for yourself.


Still wondering “why wear knee sleeves?”

Whether you need protection, support, stability, or something for injury recovery your knees are too important to scrimp on the price. Even though more expensive doesn’t always equal more quality or results, you will usually get what you pay for.

Each manufacturer designs in their own advantages and disadvantages. So Just keep in mind that although there are a lot of different models for different results.

Always consider your needs, based on what you do and why you will wear knee sleeves.

For instance:

  • Will you be doing a lot of heavy lifting?
  • Are you a runner, or a jogger?
  • Do you need them to stay in place and comfortable all day for an injury?
  • Looking for support and compression for arthritic knees?

Some are best for one activity only, like sleeves for weightlifting; others are much lighter and more flexible to cover more activities with one sleeve. The compression and comfort always depend on the size you choose, so be careful to read and understand the sizing chart each manufacturer includes. Choosing the best knee sleeves and making accurate measurements is the key to better results.

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