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Knee Sleeves vs. Knee Wraps – Breaking Down Their Differences

knee sleeves vs. knee wraps

Believe it or not, they are not the same. Yes, they're worn around the knee, but they have their own distinct features and benefits.  So, if you are wondering how knee sleeves and knee wraps differ from each other, make sure to read everything below.

What are knee sleeves?

man lifting a barbell

While they are popular among the Olympic weightlifting community, knee sleeves are not just exclusive to lifters, they are also a favorite of athletes. Typically made of neoprene material, knee sleeves are worn by sliding them over the knees. They are compressive and they help protect you for additional weightlifting knee support. 

Why should you wear them?              

woman lifting a barbell

The main advantage of using lifting knee sleeves is that your knees are protected from the risk of damage or from future injury. Additionally, it also provides compression, which aids blood flow and reduces pain and swelling in the knee joint during and after your workout.

woman on a sit up bench    

Using knee sleeves for squats can make you recover quickly from your workout, ensuring that your performance gets better. And just when you thought that the benefits of using squat sleeves stop there, you'd be surprised to know that these powerlifting knee sleeves also provide wearer lateral stability and limit patella movement.                

However, just to remind you, weightlifting knee sleeves are totally different from knee braces. They don't protect existing knee injuries or unstable knees. Be sure to remember that.                                          

What are knee wraps?

Knee wraps are practically another version of wrist wraps. They are made with the same elastic material and worn by bodybuilders and powerlifters. They are wrapped around the knees either in a diagonal or spiral method. They are usually used when doing squats. 

By the way, they are also not the same with knee straps or knee braces.

Why should you wear them?  

Knee wraps are quite useful among powerlifters because they allow more weight to be lifted when performing a squat. (Ever heard of powerlifting knee wraps?) The tightness of the knee wraps felt when doing the downward phase of the squat allows a high amount of elastic energy to be stored and released during the upward phase. Knee wraps are also said to reduce stress.

Although knee wraps help you carry more weight, they are also kind of restrictive. They are tightly worn around the kneecap, and they also completely cover the patella, which can then increase the risk of injuries and knee joint problems in the long run, such as arthritis.

Which is Which?                

Now that you are aware of the difference between knee sleeves and knee wraps, it really depends on you which of these two you think would be the perfect knee support for you. Just remember that wearing a knee support sleeve will help prevent knee injuries and provide compression, while knee wraps are handy if you want to lift more weight when doing squats.    

If you're #TeamKneeSleeves, we've got you covered! 

man lifting a barbell

Check out Nordic Lifting Knee Sleeves, one of our best sellers!  

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