There are plenty of people who use knee wraps. You can find them at the gym, the field, or even at the local sports center.
You can use knee wraps for several benefits or if you’ve got specific knee injuries and your doctor recommends using one. If you’re going for lifts at the gym, you’re probably wondering if knee wraps are effective for squats.
What are Knee Wraps?
It’s the same elastic material found in wrist wraps that makes up a knee wrap. Competitive powerlifters or bodybuilders use knee wraps. They use these and wrap them around their knees in a spiral or diagonal method for squats.
How do Knee Wraps Work?
Powerlifters and bodybuilders use knee wraps for one thing: squats. If you’re planning on using knee wraps, then you’ve got to take note of the exercise.
Knee wraps help powerlifters perform heavyweight squats by storing elastic energy. When a lifter goes down, the knee wraps keep some energy to bounce the lifter when they go up.
It’s like pulling a rock back with a slingshot and letting it go with the release. With the same function, knee wraps reduce more pressure on the tendons surrounding the knee.
It allows powerlifters to do a powerful squat with maximum effort while keeping their knees attached to their quads. However, powerlifters should only use knee wraps for around ten repetitions of their squats.
The purpose of doing squats is to train our bodies to be able to lift the weight. If you are doing squats with knee wraps, it will give you too much help, and you won’t be able to train yourself for lifting that kind of weight.
The Cons of Using Knee Wraps
Knee wraps give a considerable amount of assistance to squats’ powerlifters, but they provide little to no protection for injuries. Knee wraps are elastic and use elastic energy.
When you perform a squat, the energy stays on your knees due to the knee wraps. The strain put on your knees as the wrap holds that energy together will increase the likelihood of injuries.
Using knee wraps may also increase the friction in the patella area. It will bring more pain to that area and increase your chances of getting injured.
What is an Alternative for Knee Wraps?
If you’re not a powerlifter and you’re planning on doing some heavyweight squats, an alternative might be using knee sleeves. Knee sleeves work almost as well as knee wraps, but they provide more protection.
Knee sleeves give you increased blood flow, increased recovery time, and reduced pain. It can also help you recover from more than one workout faster.
The only downsides for knee sleeves are limiting a specific range of movement for your knees in a good way. They also can’t help you lift weights as much as knee wraps.
The design of knee sleeves protects you from getting an injury, but they cannot protect you from past wounds.
Overall, knee sleeves aren’t miracle workers, and neither are knee wraps. It’s best if you do some serious deliberation on what accessory to invest in before you go to the gym.