Does Compression Clothing Make Sense for Golfers?
If you go to the gym regularly or participate in sports on a regular basis, you have probably seen many of your fellow players wearing compression gear. You may (and should) wear compression gear yourself.
Compression gear is worn mainly by runners, football players, basketball players and other similar sports enthusiasts. It is also worn by skiers and such to help regulate body temperature as well as the other benefits of compression.
What about golfers? Does compression clothing make sense for golfers?
The simple answer is yes.
And it is of particular help for those who suffer from golfers’ elbow, which is a relatively common complaint among golfers. Let’s take a look at the benefits of compression in general and how it can apply to golfers.
Studies have shown that compression can accelerate soft tissue injury recovery, including tendinitis. Golfers often suffer from tendinitis, often called tennis or golfers’ elbow. Compression sleeves can be especially beneficial in these cases.
Compression can also reduce the severity of muscle soreness after working out and/or a long day out on the links. This lessening of muscles soreness is especially beneficial from those who have ligament or tendon issues surrounding the joints.
Compression gear can increase blood circulation and prevents blood from pooling. The increased circulation of blood is a natural healing process and can relieve pain and speeds up recovery. Compression can be used as part of the widely accepted injury prescription: RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation).
Studies have shown that compression is especially beneficial in relieving muscles soreness. One study, published in Muscle, Ligaments and Tendons Journal, indicated that treadmill runners who employed compression had 26.7% fewer injuries that those who did not wear compression.
Another study in the International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance states, “the benefits of compression clothing seem to be most pronounced when they are applied for recovery purposes 12 to 48 hours after significant amounts of muscle-damage-inducing exercise.”
Several golf fitness experts have weighed in on the benefits of compression for golfers:
Golf Digest fitness advisor Ralph Simpson states, “In practical terms, if a golfer were doing conditioning exercises to such an extent as to cause muscle damage, and that damage was limited, he could golf sooner or do more conditioning if he wasn’t suffering from DOMS.”
Another Golf Digest fitness advisor, Dr. Ara Suppiah says he recommends it for many of his patients who are professional golfers. He advises to wear it post workout or post golf in the evenings. Wear it for a prolonged period (hours), but don’t sleep with it on. “Compression helps reduce lactic acid and oxidative free radicals from tissue, especially the legs.”
So does compression clothing make sense for golfers? Overall, yes it does. And of course, if wearing compression makes you feel like your swing posture is improved or if an elbow sleeve allows you to swing with confidence, definitely wear it!