Here’s how compression gear works

20 April 2017 by
First published: 31 May 2016

You’ve probably heard lots about it, and here’s how compression gear works…

When it comes to active wear, compression gear is high up in the trends. While you may see professional athletes, marathon runners, cyclists or your regular gym-goer sporting it, there’s no denying that the snug, slick look that you get makes it such an attractive appeal for most – boosting your confidence. But there’s more to compression gear than just this. It’s used to support your body throughout any training, movement and activity. Whether you have been wearing compression gear for years or have never tried, we’ve got the lowdown on how it works.

Recovery support
Vigorous exercise can sometimes produce pain and inflammation, but compression garments create an external pressure gradient to reduce any space for swelling or inflammation. They can help to soothe these side effects of exercise, and speed up your muscle recovery.

Increase muscle oxygenation
Your muscles need oxygen in order to perform, and they get this through your blood flow. The compression garments apply pressure to your muscles, increasing the blood flow and preventing lactic acid build-up, so if you’re long distance running then compression garments should allow you to go on for much longer, giving you that extra support. Socks, calf tights or full leg tights can be beneficial for any cardio exercises.

Air travel
Compression socks can also help for long haul flights to prevent deep vein thrombosis – a condition also dubbed ‘economy class syndrome’. Blood clots can occur in the leg veins in conditions where there is a lack of space, slow circulation and long periods of inactivity. Compression socks work to reduce this risk by using the added pressure to stop any swelling.