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The Advantages to Wearing a Knee Sleeve Post Injury

Knee injuries are very common among athletes at every level. However, knee sleeves are frequently seen on professional and college athletes, but why? Knee sleeves protect the knee from further injury and damage. They’re generally made from high quality rayon and breathable elastic, are worn over the knee, and usually slide on over the foot. The design of knee sleeves allows the knee to achieve full range of motion due to the neoprene material used. Full range of motion is a pivotal movement for the knee joint, and once the knee is injured the joint’s range of motion is immediately jeopardized due to the body’s natural response to injury: swelling. Swelling is defined as any abnormal enlargement of a body part and is the body’s immediate response to injury. Applying ice, resting the knee in an elevated position, and compressing the joint with a knee sleeve reduces swelling which causes the knee to be very stiff. Ranges of motion exercises are a large part of the early knee rehabilitation process. Range of motion is difficult to achieve post injury to the knee because the body immediately begins to protect the knee from further injury by limiting voluntary movements. However, it is proven that movement helps to aid the recovery process and this is why rehabilitation exercises are focused around functional activities. Orthopedic doctors suggest wearing knee sleeves pre and post-surgery to reduce swelling around the injury. Doctors suggest this because it is very hard to perform strengthening exercises if the knee is unable to achieve full range of motion. Therefore, with swelling reduced before surgery, regaining muscle strength post-surgery is normally easier when the muscles are established well before the surgery takes place. Knee sleeves help an individual through rehabilitation exercises and leisure day-to-day activities by reducing pain, swelling and stiffness. Athletes prefer knee sleeves that are snug to the joint. The fit of knee sleeves is very important because it helps to provide compression to the knee. Compression helps to increase blood circulation to the injured joint. Blood circulation helps to aid the recovery process. The fit also helps the joint to regain stability as the injury begins to heal overtime. In conclusion, three advantages of wearing a knee sleeve after injury are:
  1. Reduced pain, swelling, and stiffness
  2. The compression element helps to aid blood circulation and recovery
  3. Provided support helps to perform rehabilitation exercises and leisure activities
Main Source: http://breakingmuscle.com/strength-conditioning/the-advantages-of-knee-sleeves-what-they-are-and-when-to-wear-them
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