Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Product Review - Zensah Compression Sleeves

Zensah Compression Sleeves

As promised last week, I will spend this week's product review on some running gear. Since I am fairly new on the running scene, I do not have a lot of experience with a large number of running products. But while I try out new things, I am going try to share my observations with you.

While running in my first few races, I noticed that there were several runners that were wearing compression sleeves that covered their lower legs. I didn't give these sleeves much thought until I started getting into longer training runs. Once my runs started getting over 8 miles, I was feeling soreness in my legs that would last a few days. This soreness didn't cause me to be overly concerned. I have always felt that if you were not a little sore, then you were not working hard enough.

While visiting a local running store, I asked the sales lady if the compression sleeves really worked? She said that she loved them, especially for recovery. This was something that I never thought of using the sleeves for. Since i have always seen people wearing them while they ran and not just wearing them after their runs. I thought I would give them a try. I figured if anything it would help me recover from my longer training runs quicker and allow me to get more mile in each week.

So after dropping a bunch of hints to Anna, she surprised me with a new pair of Zensah compression sleeves, black of course. I wasn't the only one excited about these new sleeves. Jasper (our lovely beagle) was so excited, he got the Amazon box off the front porch and ripped it open. Luckily, even though he had got the sleeves out of the box and chewed on them a little, they were not damaged at all.

I started wearing the sleeves during my long weekly runs. I didn't really notice a big difference at first, but I was not getting too sore either. This is one of those preventive products that you really can't determine how much they have actually helped. I liked the feeling of extra support for my shins and calves while I ran. That was enough to satisfy me and I really enjoyed wearing these sleeves.

It wasn't until the week before my first half marathon that I truly came to appreciate the Zensah sleeves. I started getting a weird tightness/soreness in my left calf. It felt as if it was constantly on the verge of cramping. I tried everything to relieve the pain. I stretched more before and after my runs that week. But nothing seemed to help. I decided to wear my sleeves under my pants during the day while I was at work. After wearing them for around 6 hours that day, I could really feel the tightness start to go away. Since it seemed to help so much, I decided to wear them to work the next day too.

When race day rolled around later that week, my legs felt great. I can't say that the soreness would have not gone away on its own anyway. But the sleeves had to be some help in getting my legs recovered for my race. Now I am planning on getting a second pair so that i can wear one pair when I am actually running. Then I can use the other pair after my run for recovery purposes. I would urge anyone experiencing lower leg issues to try out a pair of compression sleeves.


  1. I started wearing compression sleeves - both calf and knee - after long runs last summer. My recovery time was dramatically reduced.

  2. I'm loving mine too!! My PT actually recommended that I start wearing them during most of my runs, especially as I increase my distance again. I'm thinking about getting a knee one as well.