INFORMATION ABOUT COMPRESSION
STYLE AND COMPRESSION
TRAVEL AND COMPRESSION
SPORTS AND COMPRESSION
WHO CAN BENEFIT FROM COMPRESSION PRODUCTS?
Gradient compression garments are used to increase blood circulation and reduce swelling in those with circulation disorders and can also assist in athletic performance. Gradient compression socks, for example, apply the greatest amount of pressure near the ankle and decreases as it extends up the calf, stopping under the knee cap. Athletic gradient compression garments, usually made of spandex, offer support all over the body using the same principles to provide structural support. Athletes also use them as a recovery aid. That doesn’t mean that they are only meant for the athletically incline.
Gradient compression garments are often used in hospitals where patients are very sedentary. After an operation, sedentary patients are at risk of deep vein thrombosis, or DVT. This is a condition in which a blood clot forms in a deep vein. DVT normally forms in the lower leg but can also occur in other parts of the body. According to the UK National Health Service, an untreated DVT can lead to a pulmonary embolism in 1 in 10 of those affected. Pulmonary embolisms occur when the clot breaks loose and travels through the bloodstream to the lungs. The clot can block the blood flow to the lungs which can cause a patient to have trouble breathing, experience chest pain and lose consciousness. If not treated, it can lead to serious complications and even death.
Other conditions where the use of compression garments may be prescribed may include varicose veins (swollen and enlarged veins usually in the legs), skin ulcers, and lymphedema (painful swelling of the lymph nodes.) According to WebMD, gradient compression socks or stockings should be worn at all times except during bathing and sleeping to improve blood flow and problems such as blood pooling in the legs.
Patients may have concerns over whether their health insurance may cover gradient compression stockings. Many insurance companies will cover them if they are considered medically necessary. Patients should always call their insurance company to check if they are covered. Aetna Healthcare lists several conditions that the company considers gradient compression garments to be medically necessary including: Lipodermatosclerosis, Stasis dermatitis (venous eczema), Varicose veins (except spider veins), and Venous edema.
Gradient compression sportswear has several options for athletes including shirts, sleeves, shorts, socks, tights, and more. These garments are often used by athletes such as runners and basketball players to improve circulation and decrease the amount of time that they need to spend recovering. Wearing gradient compression sportswear post-game or activity can also benefit athletes in the same manor.
Gradient compression garments are also likely to help anyone who needs assistance with improving and maintaining circulation. Those at risk of clots in the legs, especially those who are bedbound for a time after surgery, will benefit from wearing compression garments the most. People at risk of deep vein thrombosis, and subsequently a pulmonary embolism, should discuss with their doctor whether compression stockings will help. You don’t have to be an athlete to get the added benefit of gradient compression clothing so the first step is learning more about how you can benefit from the health tool everyone should have.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SUPPORT AND GRADIENT COMPRESSION
Support, compression and gradient compression are seen as interchangeable, but they are not all created equal! Support often refers to control top. Support pantyhose do not provide any gradient compression or compression in the product except for the thigh and tummy area. Compression normally refers to a product that provides equal pressure through the garment. It will feel tight all over. Gradient compression products are provide the tightest ‘squeeze’ or pressure at the ankle and gradually decrease the pressure or ‘squeeze’ up the leg. This helps to improve circulation, energize tired legs, and prevent and reduce swelling.
Other Frequently Asked Compression Questions
BACK-TO-SCHOOL COMFORT AND CONFIDENCE FOR THE COLLEGE STUDENT
It's September again, and with the crisp fall air approaching, that can only mean one thing: back-to-school outfits. Cultivating your wardrobe, as a college student, poses a much more unique challenge than when your mom was picking out your outfits each morning. Students need to discover how to dress for a wide variety of social and professional situations. They must do this by incorporating functional pieces that are trendy, and they need to look good while doing this. It is imperative to acquire versatile pieces that can function well when attending classes, going out on the town, studying, engaging in athletic events and for professional engagements. The following three styles cover a multitude of situations that an undergrad may have to morph into on any given day.
The first look you will need to master is "The Academic". This student needs to get dressed with little thought, but still look attractive, fashionable and be extremely comfortable. Sitting in a lecture hall for two and a half hours can be tedious, and comfort with style is the main concern for these students. An everyday staple for the Academic is the Therafirm Core-Spun Crew Sock. This everyday sock boasts comfort, moisture wicking technology, and keeps feet dry and cool. This item is perfect for constantly walking to and from classes. The Core-Spun Crew Sock also provides patented gradient compression technology. This compression will prevent legs from getting tired and achy after walking around campus and sitting in classes all day.
Whether you are a serious athlete or just an occasional gym-goer, it is necessary to have the proper workout attire. As an athlete you want your clothes to look good, and you also need them to aid you in performance. Both designs of Therafirm's Core-Sport and TheraSport products incorporate gradient compression for improved circulation. This aids in the recovery process and helps fight fatigue. Therafirm's athletic wear also uses moisture wicking technology to keep you dry and has antimicrobial fibers to prevent odors.
You may be a senior preparing for job interviews, or perhaps you have a big presentation for your business class. Either way, Therafirm's Ease collection is what you need to have in your arsenal to make the best impression. The women's stockings contain a non-restrictive waistband to help ensure a comfortable all day wear and come in a multitude of styles, sizes and colors. Both the men's and women's lines contain trouser socks with your choice of compression grade. Both lines use micro-cool technology to keep you comfortable and dry all day, and come in a wide variety of colors and styles to go with an assortment of professional ensembles.
Therafirm's patented, affordable and stylish products have been a trusted name for over 50 years! You can be confident that you are buying a high quality product that will last. Incorporating these three essential pieces into your wardrobe will leave any campus bound person feeling confident that they are covered for most occasions. Be sure to check out the many other quality products that Therafirm has to choose from.
BACK-TO-SCHOOL COMFORT FOR COLLEGE WOMEN
Once again, it is time to enroll in classes and purchase textbooks and other necessary supplies for the new school year. While expectant mothers going back to school may anticipate some mental stress throughout the semester as they cram for exams and try to meet deadlines, it’s important to also remember that school is hard on your body. You’ll want to take extra measures to ensure your health and the health of your growing baby.
All of that extra sitting in class and walking across campus puts pressure on your circulatory system, which can compound already existing swelling from your pregnancy. In some cases, poor blood flow leads to long-term problems such as varicose and spider veins. According to BabyCenter, pregnant women are more susceptible to getting varicose veins if other family members have had them and can get worse with each successive pregnancy. Fortunately, you can use these strategies to reduce your chances of developing long-term health issues while pregnant and stay comfortable throughout the upcoming school year.
Wearing Compression Garments
Pain and swelling in your feet, formally called edema, occur when the blood flow from your legs to your heart is disrupted and fluids accumulate in the lower region of your body. Your blood volume and bodily fluids increase by 50% to ensure that your baby has excess fluid in case they need it. Compression garments apply pressure to your veins and body tissues to help restore proper blood flow from the legs back to the heart. To achieve the highest level of comfort, it is not only recommended that pregnant women wear compression garments, but that they choose a style that applies the right amount of pressure needed for their level of swelling. Compression socks and legwear come in graduated levels that allow you to reduce your uncomfortable symptoms without feeling constricted. For instance, you may need compression hosiery that provides light to moderate support if you only experience mild swelling at the end of the day.
Maximize Your Comfort
As you go prepare to go to class each day, there are some things that you can do to increase the effectiveness of your compression garments. Always put your compression tights and hosiery on first thing in the morning. This helps to keep the valves on your veins in the proper position for optimum blood circulation. You can also make a few minor changes to your daily habits to improve swelling and pain in your lower extremities. For instance, you should try elevating your legs when sitting for long periods of time and getting up to move around periodically to increase blood circulation. Low intensity routines such as stretching, yoga, and meditation can also improve circulation by bringing attention to how your body is functioning such as its breathing patterns and placing your head lower than your heart.
Blend Comfort and Fashion
Just because you are wearing maternity clothes and going to school doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice fashion for comfort. Women’s compression tights are found in a variety of shades that you can match to your favorite outfits, and no one can even tell that they are designed to provide the right amount of support to reduce swelling in your feet and legs. Walking into a classroom with the confidence that you look and feel your best puts you in the right mindset for success.
Going to college is the perfect excuse to do a little back-to-school shopping and adding to your wardrobe can be both fashionable and functional by helping alleviate the uncomfortable symptoms of pregnancy in a trendy way. While you may not be able to avoid long walks across the campus, you can take charge of your comfort so that you feel amazing even at the end of the school day.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT COMPRESSION GARMENT
Compression garments, also referred to as compression clothing, are articles designed specifically for their ability to provide a tight and secure fit around the specific body part that they are intended to cover. Whether they are being used for athletic training, to decrease pregnancy swelling, or to make a child with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD) more comfortable, there is a brand and style for every activity. Compression garments are so diverse in their capabilities that they can be utilized by different people for a variety of specific purposes.
Types of Compression Garments & Common Uses
There are numerous types and designs of compression garments. These articles of clothing are created to securely fit both the upper and lower body. Garments commonly created to fit the upper body are compression shirts and arm sleeves. Depending on a user's aesthetic taste or specific health or athletic needs, compression shirts are often available with and without sleeves. Garments designed for the lower body include compression socks, shorts, pants, tights and leg sleeves.
Compression garments can be worn by anyone. However, these products are typically donned by athletes aiming to maximize a workout regimen or heighten their performance in a given sport or for therapeutic purposes in people afflicted with specific illnesses. They also are popular amongst pregnant women, who wear them to reduce swelling and encourage continued circulation throughout their body.
Benefits of Wearing Compression Garments
Compression garments are believed to provide several benefits to the individuals who wear them including:
- Increased blood flow to impacted body regions by holding muscles in place. Constriction of the affected muscle is thought to potentially increase blood flow to the area in question and surrounding tissues. Such an occurrence is believed to help athletes maintain or gain an increased level of strength when performing physical endeavors.
- Reduced muscle fatigue caused by constriction and increased blood supply. It is believed that constricted body regions are less likely to suffer fatigue and will therefore be less susceptible to sustaining injuries such as strains and be more equipped to recover from incidents of soreness.
- Improved oxygen flow and circulation to affected muscles as a result of increased blood flow.
- Maintaining warmth and body temperature, even in the presence of perspiration and when engaging in exercise in cold, windy or rainy conditions.
- A tight fit that provides comfort and prevents clothing slippages, which can interfere with an athlete working out or in competition and, in severe cases, might cause freak accidents.
Constrictive garments have been proven effective in helping individuals stricken with several health issues. However, the clothing articles are believed to be particularly beneficial when worn by people diagnosed with cardiovascular or blood circulation problems such as varicose veins, diabetes, coronary or peripheral artery disease and in the more rapid healing of ulcers caused by circulation issues.
Although there aren’t any restrictions regarding whom can or should wear compression garments, such clothing articles are typically most beneficial to athletes and individuals diagnosed with health problems related to decreased or poor blood circulation. Research conducted has shown that these garments may provide numerous health benefits to those who use them.
5 REASONS TO WEAR COMPRESSION GARMENTS
Compression garments have long been known as being beneficial for people who struggle with symptoms of venous disorders and sensory processing issues. However, these types of clothing can also help you address a wide range of other problems that arise during the course of a normal day. Whether you have worn tights or socks in the past or are ready to add something new to your wardrobe, knowing about these benefits of wearing compression garments helps you get the most out of your clothing choices.
Feel an Instant Sense of Comfort
Fashion is important, but you should always feel comfortable in the clothing that you wear. For many people, the gentle pressure that compression garments place on the skin provide a sense of comfort that soothes stress. A majority of compression wear is also designed with features such as no seams so that you always feel amazing in your favorite styles.
Improve Post-Workout Recovery
Compression garments such as leggings and armbands have long held a place in sports. While some people simply enjoy the increased range of motion that these garments provide compared to other types of clothing, many athletes also prefer compression gear for the benefits that it provides for their post-workout recovery. Recent studies have shown that compression wear reduces the vibrations experienced by muscles during extreme physical activity, which can help to ease muscle fatigue and soreness that often follows a workout.
Add an Extra Layer of Warmth
Layering your clothing is the optimal way to fend off frigid temperatures during cooler weather. However, you may find that normal tights and undershirts add bulk to your frame that is uncomfortable and unattractive. Since compression garments are often made for you to wear under your regular clothing, you’ll find that the thinner fabric keeps the warmth closer to your skin without adding unnecessary bulk that makes movement difficult.
Create a Smooth Silhouette
Over the years, it’s normal to develop a few lumps and bumps in your figure, especially after pregnancy or weight loss. While these are all-natural parts of reaching a certain level of maturity, the truth is that you may lack confidence about wearing your favorite outfits because of how you look in the mirror. Compression hosiery and tights help to smooth out those minor imperfections in your legs and tummy so that you always look your best.
Enhance Your Personal Style
In the past, people shopping for compression garments were limited to neutral shades such as skin tones and white that were not always appealing. Now, designers have caught on to the fact that people love to experiment with different patterns and colors that enhance their appearance. Companies like Therafirm offer a wide range of lengths, compression levels, and styles in a variety of core-spun patterns. They were even Dr. Schoene's September product of the month! Whether you love sheer tights in the season’s most popular colors to wear under your dresses or can never have enough striped socks, you’ll find that your new compression wear actually enhances your wardrobe.
Your clothing choices are personal, and you should always feel as good as you look. As you explore the different types of compression garments that are available, be sure to keep your comfort and style in mind so that every new addition to your wardrobe helps you improve your happiness.
BOOSTING CIRCULATION WITH COMPRESSION STOCKINGS
Compression stockings have long been used to promote better blood circulation in individuals who are at risk for leg swelling and pain due to chronic health problems or recent surgery. However, they’ve recently been making headlines as more people begin to realize that they can help individuals beyond those who are pregnant or have varicose veins. Compression stockings can alleviate pain for anyone who is active. Their users range from Olympic athletes to anyone who must sit or stand for long periods of time such as flight attendants and warehouse employees. While it may seem strange to think that a pair of hosiery or socks could do so much, understanding the science behind how compression stockings boost blood circulation in your body can help you to see the benefits of incorporating them into your lifestyle.
The Science Behind Compression Wear
Your circulatory system begins with your heart pumping blood throughout the body via its arterial system. As the blood travels, it delivers electrolytes, oxygen and nutrients to muscles and organs before it returns to the heart through the venous system. While this system typically works fairly smoothly, minor issues with the venous system can generate problems. When the blood returns to the heart through your veins, it must flow against gravity. Issues such as weak valves or a sluggish blood flow can cause it to pool and lead to swelling and inflammation. Compression stockings apply pressure to these areas that stop blood from pooling in the legs and feet so that it flows back up to the heart. When this happens, many of the symptoms associated with venous insufficiency are alleviated.
Times When Compression Stockings Are Beneficial
There are many reasons why blood flow to the legs and feet may be restricted. In some cases, this is caused by an obvious physical reason such as needing to sit at a desk for long periods of time as an office worker or student. Pregnancy is another time when many people experience the symptoms of venous insufficiency due to an increased amount of blood flow and restrictions on the main arteries and veins. People with health conditions that reduce blood circulation such as diabetes will also find that compression stockings can help to improve blood flow. Athletes who engage in long, arduous workouts such as running marathons also find that adding compression garments to their gear reduces the fatigue and swelling that often restricts with their competitive edge.
Ways to Stylishly Include Comfort Wear in Your Wardrobe
Although venous disorders and pregnancy leg swelling are fairly common amongst the population, you may still prefer to avoid advertising your discomfort to the world. Fortunately, you have options for seamlessly including compression stockings into your wardrobe. First, begin by finding the right level of compression and size to fit your needs so that you know they will be comfortable. Then, look for stockings in your skin tone, or you can experiment with fun colors and patterns that look just like normal socks and tights.
Once you find the perfect pair of stockings, be sure to wear them during times when you expect leg pain and swelling such as before you go to work. This way, you can see the biggest results of boosting blood circulation in your body.
WHAT DEEP VEIN THROMBOSIS IS AND HOW YOU CAN PREVENT IT
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) is a potentially life-threatening condition that happens when a blood clot forms in a vein within your body. In most cases, the clot occurs in a vein in the legs, and you can have more than one clot form at a time. Once a clot forms, you become at risk for it breaking away and traveling to your lungs where it can block blood flow to these vital organs. When this happens, it is called a pulmonary embolism, and emergency medical care becomes a necessity. While the complications involved with DVT are frightening, knowing your risk factors and how to promote better blood flow through your body helps you avoid developing a dangerous clot in your veins.
Watch for the Signs of DVT
The main symptoms of DVT involve pain and discoloration in the affected limb. Since the clots usually form in the legs, this pain often begins in the calf and feels a lot like cramps. You may also be able to see redness or feel warmth in the area where the clot forms. Keep in mind, however, that these symptoms can be subtle or not felt at all. If you feel like you may be experiencing DVT, then you should reach out to your physician. People with risk factors or symptoms such as shortness of breath that indicate a possible pulmonary embolism need to be assessed by a medical professional right away.
Identify Your Risk Factors
There are many risk factors associated with DVT, and you should be aware that having more than one of them increases your odds of having a clot form even more. Women who are pregnant or taking hormonal birth control medications are at risk for developing DVT due to changes in their blood volume and the way it circulates. Having a sedentary lifestyle, being on bedrest, or doing any activity that involves prolonged sitting such as flying also increases your risk because these activities slow blood flow. People over the age of 65 or who have a family history of blood clots should also be concerned about preventing DVT.
Take Preventative Action
As with many health issues, taking action now helps you prevent developing DVT. Naturally, you need to adopt healthy lifestyle habits such as quitting smoking and losing weight so that your body is better able to pump blood through your body. You can also wear compression garments to help restore circulation from your legs back up to your heart. In fact, a recent study found that compression socks were effective at reducing leg swelling and DVT in passengers who wore them on a flight. Increasing your movement by exercising every day and simply getting up to walk around during long periods of sitting can also help to keep the blood moving in your legs.
The prevention of DVT is as simple as improving your overall health and implementing lifestyle changes such as wearing compression garments that keep your circulatory functioning well. Whether you are pregnant and flying or have another known risk factor for developing DVT, taking action now allows you to benefit from knowing that you are doing everything you can to avoid a health emergency.
WHEN TO WEAR COMPRESSION STOCKINGS
Compression socks and stockings are effective at easing the uncomfortable leg swelling that accompanies many different types of health conditions. Venous disorders, medication side effects, and pregnancy are just a few changes in your health that could lead to a need to prevent swollen feet and legs. While compression garments are easy to put on, you do need to know when to wear them to get the most relief from your symptoms and avoid potential issues that could occur from overuse.
Put Stockings on First Thing in the Morning
The ideal time to put on your compression garments is right after you get out of bed. Putting them on right when you wake up helps to prevent swelling that tends to get worse during the day. If you do forget to put on your compression garments first thing in the morning, then you should put them on as soon as you remember. Keep in mind that you may need to use other strategies to reduce swelling in your legs before you put compression socks on in the middle of the day. For instance, elevating your legs can help to make putting on your garments more comfortable.
Remove Compression Wear at Night
Although compression socks help to improve blood flow through your legs, you do want to make sure that you take them off at bedtime. This helps to prevent the possibility of constricting blood flow as you sleep. Since laying down temporarily reduces the effects of gravity on your circulatory system, you should not notice too much swelling in your legs after you take off the stockings. If you do notice swelling in your legs overnight, then you can try propping your feet up with a pillow to slightly elevate them and increase blood flow.
Know When to Wear Compression Socks for Other Purposes
For some people, it is not necessary to wear compression socks every day. This might be true for you if you only notice leg swelling after situations that require you to sit or stand for long periods of time. For instance, putting on your socks before a long flight helps to reduce swelling that occurs while traveling. Women who are pregnant may also choose to put their stockings on when they anticipate having to sit for long periods at work or school. Athletes also find that wearing their socks during a workout helps to reduce leg fatigue and boost circulation. The warmth provided by compression stockings is desirable for anyone who experiences slower circulation in their legs during cold weather.
After giving compression socks a try, you will want to wear them every day to increase blood flow to your legs that helps to alleviate swelling. Make putting them on each morning part of your normal daily routine, and experiment with different colors and styles until you find the ones that make you feel excited about the new addition to your wardrobe.
COMPRESSION GEAR: AND EMERGING FASHION TREND
Compression gear is emerging as a fashionable and functional option for everyday wear. In the past, compression garments were used mainly by athletes. In recent times, compression gear has become a staple of casual wear that can be used outside of workouts. Here are a few of the most popular forms of compression attire that are both fashionable and functional.
One of the most fashionable forms of compression gear in women's fashion are leggings. Compression leggings are used for increased circulation and support. They come in colorful designs that can be worn in casual settings as well as workouts. Compression leggings are very comfortable since they are made out of much more flexible fabric than denim.
Compression socks have also emerged as a fashion forward form of utility wear. Many compression socks come in bright colors and patterns. Their interesting designs, combined with the added advantage of gradient compression can reduce swelling while adding flare to any outfit.
Compression shirts have also made their way into modern fashion. Form-fitting athletic attire allows the ability to show off physical characteristics. Compression shirts are made of a breathable and flexible material. Adding these shirts to modern athletic attire can be a perfect base for any workout ensemble. Compression sleeves offer graduated compression from the ankles to the calves and can encourage increased recovery from strenuous workouts. Knee high sleeves offer colorful statements that can add style to everyday sport gear that looks good both inside and outside of the gym.
The benefits of compression gear are numerous. The materials used for compression gear are breathable, flexible and have the benefits of support, circulation, and endurance that many forms of active wear do not. The materials provide a level of comfort that ensures that wearers stay cool and can move without restriction. Keeping dry prevents the general discomfort felt from constrictive clothing that can cause overheating.
While compression gear certainly has a variety of health benefits, modern technology and design make it a fashionable option for those seeking to cash in on the health benefits while looking good. From socks to shirts and leggings, men and women can use compression gear as an everyday option for casual wear. With everything from light breathable sheer yarns to knit pattern textures, compression gear is no longer just for athletes or people suffering from health ailments. Compression wear is a comfortable alternative that provides benefits above and beyond common workout attire.
COMPRESSION GARMENTS THAT DON'T SQUASH YOUR STYLE
There are compression garments for slimming and tastefully shaping your body, for enhancing sports performance and protecting you while you play. There are also those for helping you to heal after childbirth, an operation or cosmetic surgery. The best compression garments offer a made-to-measure and custom-cut feel. With just a few guidelines, you can always be sure to choose compression wear that makes you look and feel perfect. And while fashionable compression gear is important, equally crucial is the functionality. Compression gear is meant to serve a purpose. Whether to improve athletic ability or facilitate better blood flow through parts of your body, getting the right gear will go a long way in keeping you at your best.
One Size Does Not Fit All
When you see a compression garment with this label, it doesn’t mean that one size fits all so you should make sure it fits you correctly. It is important to be measured accurately to determine the best size. You'll want to measure the circulation of the ankle, calf and thigh, as well as length to the floor.
It Should Do Its Job
You should feel and see that the garment is working. Compression garments worn post-op should ease pain, speed healing and lend you some support and strength in the right places. Compression garments worn for blood flow should leave your legs feeling more energized.
Comfort is Key
You often spend some of your most important hours out and about wearing your compression garments, and you should feel good. The garment should move with you, provide the right kind of support, shouldn't feel too constricting, and shouldn't be hot, itchy, or have an irritating tag or zipper. From the office to the gym, it should function with comfort. You won't have to stop in your tracks or anywhere to adjust if it fits well because it won't be riding up anywhere or rolling up at the cuffs, hem, or edges.
It Shouldn't Squash Your Circulation
One of the key reasons people use compression gear is that it provides compression in the right places both for support and circulation. If the garment is too tight, it may cut off circulation. If it is too loose, it does not provide improved circulation benefits.
Whether you are looking for upper or lower body compression wear, there is a style that's right for you because it meets all of your needs and keeps you stylin’. You just have to try things out until you find the right one!
THE SUBTLE STYLE AND OBVIOUS BENEFITS OF GRADIENT COMPRESSION
Whether you are an athlete with a high training volume, someone who struggles with lymphedema, or just have achy legs from time to time, gradient compression socks are a tool that may greatly improve your quality of life. The "gradient" in the name means that the compression is “designed to deliver a controlled amount of pressure which is greatest at the distal end (ankle) of the garment and gradually decreases towards the proximal end (top) of the stocking.” This stimulates blood flow and helps prevent pooling in the feet and ankles.
Gradient Compression Socks for Athletes
While gradient compression socks work well for general aches, they can speed muscle recovery by improving circulation. This can be great for those who run or cycle long distances, as well as those who strength train. Increasing blood flow to muscle tissue can speed muscle recovery and relieve post-exercise pain.
Additionally, some runners prefer to wear gradient compression while running, as it can reduce muscle vibration and improve blood flow. They come in a variety of colors, styles, and can be a great way to tie together your running outfit or stand out in a race. Feeling great and looking great have been combined in a sleek package.
Gradient Compression Socks for Those With Lymphedema and Venous Issues
Lymphedema is a condition that can be alleviated to a great extent by increasing circulation and promoting healthy blood flow. Gradient compression socks encourage the flow of lymphatic fluid back out of the affected leg(s), which can help improve your symptoms and reduce associated pain. Compression socks are useful for many venous disorders, including venous insufficiency, varicose veins, and venous ulcers. Pregnant women who wear them generally see a reduction in leg swelling and the discomfort during pregnancy as well.
Gradient compression socks don't look like medical devices, so others will be none the wiser about your use of these socks, weather for medical purposes or just a comfortable part of your wardrobe. You can choose subtle tones that blend in with your day-to-day wear, or you can choose brighter colors that stand out.
While wraps or bandages can be used for a similar effect, patients who use them need to make sure they are creating an appropriate pressure. This can be somewhat tricky and time-consuming. With gradient compression socks, simply wearing them as normal socks without any special arrangement will be enough to provide you with the scientifically designed compression.
Gradient Compression Socks for General Achiness
While gradient compression socks are recommended by physicians for certain circulatory issues and can be beneficial for athletes, they also are helpful for those who experience chronic aches and pains in their legs. This is especially true for those who spend much of the day standing. Because gradient compression socks help promote proper circulation, wearing them can reduce discomfort. They fit easily under clothing, so they are compatible with most work uniforms.
Gradient compression socks offer a convenient way to manage pain and discomfort associated with leg circulation. However, they also are an option with style - you can choose from a variety of colors and lengths making it easy to incorporate into any outfit. When you choose gradient compression socks, you the benefits of a medical device without looking like one.
HOW TO STYLE COMPRESSION GARMENTS
Compression garments help to increase blood circulation in your body so that you can enjoy your favorite activities. Whether you are wearing them to reduce swelling in your legs during pregnancy or to cope with changes that occur due to venous insufficiency, compression garments will help keep you comfortable. Despite their comfort, however, you may have a few apprehensions about wearing them in public. Fortunately, designers have realized the need for fashionable compression wear, and you can use these tips to work them seamlessly into your personal style.
Choose the Right Pants and Skirts
From compression socks to hosiery and sleeves, you have tons of options for picking garments that match your favorite wardrobe pieces. Yet, you may need to get creative when you want to wear full-length compression socks during warmer weather. While you may be tempted to skip the garments, you should know that venous disorders tend to get worse in the summer. Fortunately, you can experiment with styles such as wide-legged pants and long skirts to stay cool and comfy while also reducing symptoms such as swelling.
Hosiery always adds a smooth touch to your legs when you wear dresses and skirts, and sheer styles make it practically undetectable that you are wearing compression garments. Since these are made from lighter fabrics, they tend to be slightly cooler than opaque versions, and the new sheer patterns that are available add a fun touch that look just like normal types of pantyhose. Sheer styles are also available for men and can be matched to your skin color, making it hard to notice them even when you are wearing shorts.
Pick Fun Colors and Patterns
Sometimes, the best way to disguise something is to show it off. If patterned socks and stockings are part of your unique style, then you can always work your garments into your wardrobe. Consider picking out a striped pair of socks to wear under your work pants, or a set of patterned stockings with a solid color dress. You can also find garments in this season’s hottest colors such as dark blue and burgundy. Either way, you’ll definitely be making a statement while maintaining the health of your veins.
Show Your Toes
Open toed versions of socks and stockings allow you to wear sandals and other styles of shoes with ease. Exposing a bit of your foot also helps you to stay cooler when wearing long pants during the summertime, and this is a great option if you struggle with skin or nail issues on your feet since airflow is unrestricted. Being able to wear your favorite shoes helps you to step out into the world with confidence.
Compression garments have come a long way in both style and comfort. They are no longer the neutral-colored, calf socks that you might remember watching your grandparents don when you were a child. Now, you can experiment with different colors, lengths and styles to show off your vibrant personality. Whether you prefer a classic look or love funky patterns, you are sure to find a perfect match that fits perfectly with your unique look.
4 TRAVEL MUST-HAVES FOR THE FASHIONABLE GLOBETROTTER
No matter where you end up, you know how important it is to look your best. When you pack your suitcase, you know how to have the perfect combination of fashion and function. You can be comfortable and prepared while getting all the stares, no matter where your final destination brings you. Be a trendsetter while being a globetrotter with these 4 must have items.
Jeggings could be one of the most versatile type of women's pants ever created. They are comfortable and stretchy, but can pass for a pair of jeans. Whether you dress them up or down, Jeggings can make the perfect pants for any travel ensemble. Pair them with a boyfriend tee for a casual trot or match with a blazer for a dressier look. The possibilities are endless. Ensure comfort without sacrificing style by packing a few pairs of these versatile pants for your next journey.
Gradient Compression Products
Did you know regularly sitting for long periods of time, such as long flights to your latest destination, can pose serious health concerns? By restricting your blood vessels, you could end up with Economy Class Syndrome. It may be a funny name, but the symptoms are no laughing matter. It can cause the formation of blood clots, deep vein thrombosis and other issues. Fortunately, there are ways to help prevent these issues without giving up your traveling. Make sure to wear comfortable clothes and invest in a good pair of gradient compression socks. Nowadays, these helpful accessories have been designed to be both fashionable and functional, providing support where it is needed most. Best of all, no one will even know you are wearing them!
Less Outfits, More Accessories
Packing tons of wardrobe changes can become a bit of an undertaking when it comes to making it all fit. We know you want to have a variety of looks during your getaway, but that doesn't mean you have to pack your entire closet. Instead of bringing a ton of clothes, bring a few versatile outfits. Pack plenty of different accessories. You can use a different combination of necklaces, bracelets, earrings and other accessories to help change up your look each day. Plus, having less luggage to lug around will make traveling a bit easier, especially when you are sprinting through the airport to catch your connecting flight!
Speaking of sprinting, traveling means tons of walking, especially if your destination calls for plenty of sightseeing. Now, you should still bring a pair of heels for nights out, but make sure to pack (and wear) a couple of pairs of comfortable flats. Your feet will thank you!
It is also a good idea to buy a pair of bendable travel flats to keep in your purse in case you find yourself out and those heels just aren't cutting it. Beauty doesn't always have to be pain!
When you are ready to jet set to your next adventure, make sure you are prepared with these must have items. With these clever things in your arsenal, you will become the fashionable globetrotter you were destined to be. What are you waiting for? Get packing, adventure awaits!
TOP 5 THINGS TO KEEP YOU TRAVELING COMFORTABLY
For people who travel frequently, plane rides can be uncomfortable and tiring to endure. The limited physical movement available on board can often cause the most seasoned travelers to have stiff necks and legs. These five items can help reduce discomfort while travelling.
Gradient Compression Socks
Gradient compression socks stimulate blood flow to the feet while sitting for long stretches of time. Wearing them takes away the need to get up and walk around every few hours in order to prevent pins and needles. They provide increased blood flow from bottom to top, ensuring circulation for restless limbs and will allow you to lounge in your seat for as long as you wish without worrying about discomfort in your ankles and feet.
The Right Pillow
Having the right pillow during travel is imperative to being able to sleep. Similarly to selecting an appropriate firm, plush, or side pillow at home, you’ll want to select the right airplane neck pillow during flights. Taking the time to select a pillow with the appropriate texture and firmness will ensure that you will not have a sleepless and tiring flight.
It may sound obvious, but you should always make sure to travel with a water bottle in hand. Whether it’s a pop-top, straw, or screw-on model, staying hydrated is the key to reducing the possibility of headaches while in route. Increased air pressure on flights can wreak havoc on your head. Drinking plenty of water in the airport and on the plane will keep you feeling great.
Using a backpack as a carry-on instead of a single strap bag will save your shoulders, neck, and back. It is easy to over pack, but that often means carry-ons are heavy and difficult to manage. By using a backpack to distribute weight across both shoulders, your back will be better aligned. Investing in a custom backpack with the right amount of padding in the straps and a waist belt can go even further to spread the weight and make traveling more friendly.
Using sunglasses instead of eye masks on a plane can reduce headaches caused by elastic bands. Melatonin, which is available at most grocery and health food stores, can help induce sleep without having to use harsh chemicals or drugs. Sleep is especially important on long flights. It improves your productivity and offsets the stress that travelling can cause.
Having the right compression wear, pillow, water bottle, backpack, and sleep gear while you’re traveling will greatly improve the quality of your travel. Take care to select each of these items so that they fit your individual needs and your next trip will be a breeze.
COMPRESSION WEAR FOR THE CHANGING WEATHER
Compression wear was once used exclusively in medicine to improve blood flow, decrease risks of blood clots, and promote healing. Over the past few years, it has grown increasingly popular with athletes and people who must sit or stand for extended periods. As the summer months wane, compression clothing can be especially important in the cold winter months.
Cold temperatures can increase discomfort and pain for individuals with poor circulation in their feet and lower legs. Those with sedentary jobs, or ones where you are required to stand all day can be especially aware of how temperature affects circulation. Compression socks and hose can ease swelling, heaviness, burning sensations, and leg cramps by counteracting gravity and improving blood flow from the feet to the heart. Gradient compression socks offer a controlled amount of pressure that gradually decreases from bottom to top. By promoting better circulation, cold temperatures can be kept at bay by ensuring that blood flow is circulating where it is needed most.
Choosing compression wear for added warmth can provide support to muscles during the winter months. Before compression materials were available, leg warmers were used to keep muscles limber. Bulky leg warmers can be replaced with sleek compression hose and footless tights to supply warmth and provide consistent surface pressure to accelerate blood flow and reduce the buildup of lactic acid. Additionally, the garments wick moisture away to maintain warmth during the cold months. Modern compression wear is not only functional, but fashionable. There are a variety of styles available that do not sacrifice style for utility. Seasonal colors and sheer options can make compression socks and hose a fashionable addition to any wardrobe.
Cold temperatures can be difficult for a body. Winter's cold, dry air also dries skin. Dramatic temperature changes make muscles contract quickly, which can increase the risk of injury. Some of the warmest winter materials, like wool, can irritate the skin or cause allergic reactions. Compression garments act like a second skin that can help eliminate friction and chafing while working out or sitting at a desk. They can be worn alone or as an additional layer beneath skirts and pants. The smooth texture soothes skin and the compression material supplies support to muscles all day.
As the days grow shorter and temperatures drop, compression garments are an important addition to the wardrobes of expectant mothers as well as those suffering from fatigued legs, and swollen feet due to sitting or standing for long periods of time. Compression socks, footless tights, and hose are versatile clothing elements that provide muscle support and warmth while promoting increased blood flow in order to make the winter months more bearable.
HOW COMPRESSION CAN HELP WITH PERFORMANCE AT THE GYM OR ON THE FIELD
Compression clothing was once considered an expensive performance enhancer for elite athletes. Now, this specialized attire is worn by casual sports participants, as well as those with certain medical conditions. Here is a quick break down of what compression clothing is and how it is believed to benefit those who who wear it.
What Types Of Compression Clothing Exist?
There are several different kinds of compression attire designed to fit specific areas of an individual’s body. It is woven from materials (typically spandex) designed to fit tightly over the user’s skin. The most common form of compression clothing is gradient compression wear. These garments increase blood flow from top to bottom and can be found in socks and sleeves. All-over compression wear, on the other hand, provides localized compression that more evenly distributes compression throughout.
What Are Compression Clothes Used For?
Compression clothing holds muscles in place during a workout. This can strengthen muscles by increasing blood flow. In addition, compression items are thought to help pool sweat. Controlling perspiration during strenuous physical activity helps keep muscles warm and limber instead of cold and stiff. The tightness and increased blood flow provided by gradient compression wear may help stimulate the healing of sore or injured muscles, ligaments and/or joints.
What Types Of Injuries Could Compression Wear Help Prevent?
Compression attire may help prevent a number of bothersome recurring and/or potentially more harmful physical ailments that hinder an athlete’s performance level and cause pain and debilitation. Common afflictions that may be prevented by wearing all-over compression clothing include everything from muscle strains to chafing, rashes and skin infections caused by perspiration, joint dislocation, ligament tears, and soreness brought on by repeated physical exertion.
Who Benefits From Wearing Compression Attire?
Competitive athletes who are committed to improving their performance levels and whom cannot afford to be slowed by lingering or nagging injuries can often benefit from compression clothing. It can also be used to benefit “part-time” athletes who are more susceptible to injuries than their more serious competitors. Even non-athletes with circulation problems and/or medical conditions can benefit from the increased blood flow of compression apparel.
How Effective Are Compression Clothes?
Studies regarding the effectiveness of compression attire are ongoing. Researchers are studying its effects within specific sports and workout regiments as well as the overall health and shape of athletic participants who wear compression apparel. Recent tests have centered around determining whether or not the duration of a particular activity impacts the effectiveness of compression wear and the amount of pressure being applied to a specific body region during physical exertion. Results have shown that those wearing compression attire reported less post-workout muscle damage and quicker recovery times from minor afflictions like soreness.
While more and more people are hoping to maximize their exercise regimens and pursue healthy lifestyles, the use of compression clothing is on the rise. Even though studies concerning its effectiveness are ongoing, many have reported enjoying the clothing's beneficial impacts.
5 ESSENTIAL TOOLS FOR RUNNING AND RECOVERY
We all love the feelings that come from running: a sense of accomplishment, that runner's high, the stress relief. Running is the perfect exercise that incorporates both cardio and endurance training that is great for all fitness levels.
No matter how much you enjoy running as a sport or past time, no one is immune from stress-related injury or strain. The impact from each footstep hitting a surface, especially pavement, sets the stage for a potential injury. However, you don't have to be a victim of a serious running injury which can set you back for weeks or even months in your training. By utilizing these 5 tools for running and recovery, you can be sure to enjoy this activity for years to come.
Stretching Straps and Foam Rollers
One of the most rudimentary, yet often overlooked tools for running is stretching. While dynamic stretches, which include stretching with movement, are said to be the most effective before races, static stretches are viable competitors for post-run recovery. Static stretches are those that are performed while standing still. Hint: think of the old school bend over and touch your toes. These tend to work best when the muscles are warm, such as after a run. Stretching straps can help you inch deeper into stretches allowing for a more intense stretch and eliminate the need for a partner for hamstring stretches. Foam rollers are great for a different kind of stretching. It allows you to apply pressure to tight areas to relieve tension. Just like a massage, foam rollers provide great muscle tension release.
Gradient Compression Socks
Many people use compression clothing to enhance their athletic performance, but people don’t know about gradient compression garment benefits. Gradient compression is compression that is greatest at the ankle and gradually decreases as it moves up the sock or stocking. Who knew that it would make a difference in running? The benefit behind gradient compression materials is based on an the idea that form-fitting compression materials can enhance blood flow and lymphatic flow. Thus, compression socks may improve performance and speed recovery. They provide added support in the areas that need it more and promote better blood flow in those areas.
Heat and Ice
For the days when you have pushed it too hard or for those times when you experience the dreaded "runner's knee," heat and ice can be your best friend. Applying the two in varying cycles can aide in resolving inflammation in the muscles around the knee. A leg heat and ice wrap can be your best friend during these times. Offering pockets for hot and cold wraps in various positions around the knee, this type of wrap provides compression support along with hot and cold therapy.
Though it may seem counter-intuitive, weight training is a great tool to use for faster runs. By strengthening the leg, abdominal, and back muscles, your posture and stamina reap the benefits. In fact, weight training is a proven method for reducing hip and knee pain for runners. Strengthening surrounding muscles provides a strong foundation for impact.
This may very well be the most difficult recovery tool, yet it is the most effective. Allow your body time to recover from long runs or interval training. Giving your body plenty of time to rest enhances your performance by giving your muscles time to recover and rebuild.
Many of us run to maintain our health and physically push our bodies. Yet, these goals become difficult when an injury ensues. By using these tools, you can reduce your risk of injury from running as well as help in recovery.
ATHLETIC COMPRESSION GEAR: FASHION — FAD OR FACT?
- Compression tops enhance posture by focusing a great deal of extension on the back, forcing athletes to stand up taller and take fuller breaths. As a result, compression tops can lead to easier breathing during particularly strenuous activity.
- Compression tops also focus on the core, by keeping things tight even when the abs are fatigued. This is a particularly important benefit for avid runners, who may suffer from abdominal fatigue during longer races. With this kind of support, longer runs can still be enjoyable and easier throughout.
- Compression tops promote a greater flow of oxygen through the muscles, enhancing performance and potentially reducing recovery times after a grueling workout or competition.
Compression Tights & Socks: A Must-Have for Some Athletes
Though not as popular among athletes as compression tops, compression tights are still a significant part of some training programs and represent real potential for athletic performance improvement. How does it work?
- Compression tights provide the "compression" part of the RICE acronym to proper athletic recovery (rest, ice compress, elevate).
- Tights reduce wasted energy and cramping by increasing muscle oscillation and flushing lactic acid from the leg muscles. Compression throughout extended running or weight training events can also reduce DOMS, or delayed onset muscle soreness, through these same processes.
- Injury risk is decreased as athletic performance is increased. Thanks to increased support of muscles and joints, damaging injuries to the calf muscles and ankles are less likely to occur, especially during extended training or distance running.
- The flow of oxygen is enhanced by the compression applied to leg muscles by compression tights, further reducing recovery time and enhancing performance.
While the compression provided by these tights supports the body throughout the length of the legs (depending on the length), many athletes also use compression socks to localize these benefits to just below the knees. There are many types of compression socks that cater to the needs and desires of athletes. They still provide the same compression benefits but in a more targeted area.
Other Features: A Matter of Personal PreferenceBeyond their compression of muscles during athletic performance, compression tights and tops also come with a wide array of other features. Some keep runners warm on cold days using compression tights by keeping a layer between the skin and the ambient air. Other brands focus on pulling sweat away from the body and keeping athletes dry during competition. These additional features aren't necessarily the selling points of traditional compression tops and compression tights, but they certainly represent a big draw for athletes who often have an ideal temperature for training and competition.
5 SHIN SPLIT SOLUTIONS: PREVENTION AND RECOVERY
Anyone who runs or jogs regularly is familiar with the symptoms of shin splints. What begins innocently enough as a little stiffness quickly transforms into throbbing pain on your shins and restricted mobility. While it is important to remember not to over exert ourselves, there are still more things we can do to prevent injuries as well as remedies to aid in recovery.
Know Your Limits
The majority of shin splints occur when you place an unaccustomed stress on the bone and muscle of your shins. Anytime you train there can be situations when more stress is put on the shins than they’re able to bear resulting in pain and injury. Ease into a new level of training, don’t suddenly increase distance or pace radically. Stretch first and ease into your workout rather than going full speed immediately. Be a smart runner and enjoy your sport pain free for years to come.
Get the Right Gear
As with any activity, having the proper tools will help you get the job done correctly. The same is very important in activities like running. If you don’t have the right shoes or clothing, you may face problems from that come from improper use. The right shoes can give the proper amount of support or cushioning and help prevent shin splints. Running shorts, compression clothing, and running socks would help prevent chaffing, provide muscular support as well as prevent overheating and moisture absorption.
There are a great variety of tactics you can employ to help improve the speed and comfort of your recovery. Having the right gear is as important in prevention as it is in dealing with shin splints. One example of a great tool to have in your arsenal is the gradient compression sock. These socks are built to provide a specific amount of pressure throughout the length of the sock. It gives more pressure at the ankle and decreases as it moves up the leg. This helps to stimulate better circulation to aid in recovery. Below are a few more supplemental methods that are equally as encouraged and important.
Ice is your friend. Your first course of action after injury should be to soothe the area in order to reduce inflammation. Be careful not to apply cold for too long or you will run the risk of tissue damage. Ideally you should apply cold for no longer than about twenty minutes and no more often than every three to four hours over the course of a few days. It’s best to make sure there is no direct contact between the icepack and your skin. Place a towel between to prevent frostbite from overexposure.
Anti-inflammatory pain killers such as ibuprofen will go a long way toward providing temporary relief from the symptoms of shin splints and aid in further reducing the inflammation that follows this kind of injury. Be careful to follow the instructions and cautions on the container as the dangers of overdosing on over the counter painkillers are very real. There is a risk of liver damage associated with large doses of NSAIDs, and going over the recommended dose is most often no more effective in relieving pain.
Stop Doing It
The best thing you can do with an injury of this nature is to stop whatever is causing the pain. Pain is the body’s way of telling you to stop. Rest is an intrinsic part of the healing process and by itself will help resolve many kinds of athletic injuries. Often it is over-use that has pushed the body past the limits of recovery and caused the injury. If you suddenly increase how far you run, how fast or even how frequently, you’ll be increasing the risk of suffering shin splints.
Sometimes shin splints are the result of improper running technique due to structural problems with the feet. Problems with foot arches will frequently show as recurring problems with shin splints. It is important to consider these tips for prevention and recovery from shin splints. Talk to your doctor to examine your feet and recommend orthotic inserts for your shoes or even physical therapy to correct muscle imbalances that may be the source of your pain. Seeing your doctor to learn more can prevent possibly permanent injury from occurring and save you from more pain down the road.
True gradient compression stockings improve blood flow, and are designed to deliver a controlled amount of pressure, starting at the ankle, and gradually decreases towards the top of the stocking. This promotes better circulation to help control swelling and relieve tired and achy legs.
Great for daily wear, travel, and sports, compression stockings help improve circulation without being too tight on your legs. 15–20mmHg compression garments come in a variety of materials to fit any lifestyle.
Ideal for varicose veins, spider veins, swelling (edema) and after surgery. You don’t have to have a condition to wear 20–30mmHg. People looking for a bit more support than the 15–20mmHg usually choose to wear 20–30mmHg.
This stronger level of compression is recommended for blood clots (DVT), lymphedema, severe swelling (edema), severe varicose veins and post-surgery.