Fitness clothing has never been more important; with ever advancing technologies coming in to play, it’s a way for athletes to enhance their performance, accelerate recovery and capture a competitive advantage without any extra effort or training. When I post this on social media people asked how can a piece of clothing contain technology and I will be honest I was a bit lost myself but have heard of it before and while I have you here now there has been other companies in touch with us with tech in instances you would never think of and one of them involves health food so stay tuned. So back to the clothing in question.
Compression garments have been used by athletes to help them reach their PB’s for years but surprisingly there is still a lot of scepticism around many of their claims. Below we dive into compression garments, the effects on the body, and a new technology taking the sporting world by storm.
What are Compression Garments
Compression garments come in the form of full-length tights, partial and full-length tops, knee-length stockings and even full body suits. They are typically worn by runners, cyclists, weightlifters, and other active individuals.
Sports compression garments are designed to provide external compression to the body, often increasing in pressure towards the extremity of the limb – this is known as graduated compression and has been said to improve performance and recovery, but not yet scientifically proven.
How Can Compression Garments Help?
Many of the benefits associated with compression relate to improvement in blood flow, including both the delivery of blood to the exercising muscle and the return of the blood back to the heart. As a result, compression is thought to improve the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the muscle to improve performance, as well as aid in the removal of waste products after exercise.
However, it is still scientifically questioned if compression wear does actually increase venous return, reduce delayed onset of muscle soreness and accelerate recovery, some of the primary reason’s athletes use compression gear.
In fact, two studies published by Indiana University found no impact on running performance when professional distance runners wore lower-leg compression sleeves and no effect on jumping ability when 25 men wore upper-leg compression garments in three different sizes.
What are Infrared Garments?
Infrared garments are designed to enhance performance and accelerate recovery through the use of infrared technology. The fabrics capture the body’s wasted energy and convert it to a specific wavelength Far Infrared Radiation (FIR) that has proven effects on the body. FIR increases the production of nitric oxide which, in combination with increased blood circulation, is responsible for a variety of positive effects. The process looks something like this:
How can Infrared Garments help?
Improved Performance: The increased levels of tissue oxygenation combined with an increase in blood circulation allows for more oxygen, nutrients, and glucose to be delivered, converted and absorbed into cells. FIR also hastens the removal and breakdown of lactic acid, delaying muscle fatigue and increasing muscle performance during exercise.
Accelerated Recovery: The increased blood oxygenation and circulation caused by FIR helps with the removal and breakdown of lactic acid and increases the rate in which waste products are removed from cells. The increased circulation also aids in replenishing muscle glycogen levels, reducing inflammation and speeding up the recovery process. All of these effects result in a faster replenishment of energy during and after exercise and increase the rates of cellular repair and replication.
Thermoregulation: FIR technology embedded into fabrics allow for:
- Temperature regulation
- Quick drying
- Increased circulation
The increase in circulation created by FIR also aids the body’s thermoregulatory system so that it does not become too hot. The fabrics also help cool the body in hotter climates as they are 63-65% quicker drying than standard fabrics. FIR accelerates the rate of evaporation and dissipates heat into the surroundings keeping the body cool.
Increased Circulation: Far Infrared Radiation (FIR) increases vasodilation of blood vessels by increasing the disassociating nitric oxide. Vasodilation expands the blood vessels causing the flow of blood to increase which in turn allows for a variety of positive effects on body tissue, including increased glycogen levels, faster removal of lactic acid, and better thermoregulatory ability.
Increased tissue oxygen levels by 20%: FIR increases the oxygen levels as well as nutrient levels in the blood making them more readily available to cells when needed. Blood circulation is also increased which speeds up the delivery of blood to the muscles. It also hastens the breakdown of lactic acid and the rate at which waste products are removed. This delays the onset of fatigue and increases muscle performance during exercise.
Increased Cellular Metabolism and Energy Production: The increased circulation and oxygenation levels of the blood results in a faster replenishment of energy both during and after exercise as well as increasing cellular repair and replication. FIR causes nitric oxide to dissociate from the active site of cytochrome-C oxidase, a protein on your mitochondria which plays a large part in the energy production process within cells. The metabolic processes within cells occur quicker because the active site is free, allowing for increased ATP production. ATP is the source of energy for all physiological processes and due to the increase in its production cells will grow, repair, and replicate faster.
Pail Relief: FIR causes a release of nitric oxide that subsequently activates cyclic guanine monophosphate (cGMP) which mediates pain reduction. FIR therefore stimulates the biological pain relief mechanisms of the body without the need for drugs. Users of KYMIRA Sport products report reductions in DOMS and other exercise related pains. Relief of pain from chronic conditions such as old injuries is also seen and can improve performance.
Conclusion There is overwhelming evidence to prove that FIR directly supports Performance, Recovery, Thermoregulation, Increased Circulation, Increased tissue oxygen levels, Increased Cellular Metabolism and Energy production and Pain Relief.
Comparatively, Compression wear is clouded with scepticism and has no real evidence to support claims of accelerated recovery, reduced onset of muscle soreness and increased venous return.
The IR50 Short Sleeve Top which I have been trying incorporates their unique infrared technology, something that promotes blood circulation, increases oxygenation of the blood, and promotes cellular metabolism. This increased rate of removal of lactic acid from your muscles, and improved rate of cellular repair and production, reduces the impact of Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness and other associated aches that you may experience after pushing your body to the limit.
Now I am not expert when it comes to clothes apart from spotting genuine from fakes but having tried this for a few weeks I did feel much better as I am on a training routine with tech goods from WITHINGS and I am seeing the benefits by losing weight continuously over the last few months and it has become habit now to train more and think more and when you have the right goods behind you it also helps a great deal and clothes like this should be looked at rather than brushed at..
With extra durable fabric and stitching and triple stitched hems, the top is a workhorse that will last you season after season, through wash after wash, and all the rough and tumble your kitbag can throw at it. And thanks to the raglan seams and flatlock stitching, the top allows you to recover in absolute comfort. The fabric is breathable and quick drying, and so the top is great if worn immediately after a workout to cool you down whilst you wait to get to the showers.
See Kymira sports for the full range and try today and see what results you get. Do let us know.