Second Wind

Second Wind
"Run With Purpose!"

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Best of the Best: Compression wear

Some of these categories made it very hard to pick a winner.  Some of them I was torn while writing.  This one and the next one (coming in a few days) were very, very easy.

Best Compression Company:

SKINS Compression.  Despite also winning the funniest (and scariest if you're typing it in a work and thinking to yourself "oh this could end really badly...") web address:  SKINS Compression is hands down the leader in compression gear.

From biometric 3D scanning that gathers 800,000 measurements for each athlete scanned to make the fit just right to endless research and peer reviews, Skins is simply unrivaled.  

I have reviewed the short tights and long tights and they continue to be my number one, hands down, go to compression wear.


There is a Lot of technology crammed into these things while fitting/wearing very simply (good technology without bulky bells and whistles).  They include highly researched gradient technology in all of their compression gear.  

Additionally, the full length tights include a knee pocket (my term - not theirs) that was a huge plus for me, as most of you know!  The pocket (seen in the picture) is bio-mechanically placed Memory MX fabric that surrounds the knee, the IT band, and the TFL muscle group to provide even better constant, controlled compression while allowing for truly unrestricted movement (which of course is very important around the knee - and a place where many companies screw this up).

The pants and shorts both feel fantastic, no rubbing, no felt seems, no irritation of any kind.

The compression is nothing short of perfect.  
Many lower quality 'compression' companies simply squeeze you to death (thereby destroying what they are claiming to help), others fit so loose there is also no benefit at all.  With the Skins (they tout their "unique BMI/anthropometrical algorithm" fitting process), the fit is truly second to none!  

I wore these tights and shorts during runs as well as post run (even to sleep in post long run) and always felt comfortable and I truly felt better on my runs and less DOMS.

For this last part, ladies forgive me for TMI - the crotch on these makes them.  Really.  The fit, comfort, and support in the crotch fixes everything about that... region that makes me dislike (and some runs Hate) compression gear.  Their purpose designed "comfortably shaped crotch for better ball control" is a Huge benefit of the Skins line!

In Tennessee, like most places this year, we have had a crazy 'winter' so far.  As such, over the course of one week alone we had a day of 28 and a day of 67.  Remarkably enough, Skins claim of being able to wear these in any weather proved true - the long tights were great in the cool, but even on the 67 degree day, the long tights did not feel overly hot and did an excellent job at regulation temperature - largely due to the fact (I'm sure) that they transfer (wick) moisture extremely well.

Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of the Skins long tights is their sizing.  As most of you know, I am a towering 5' 6" (on a good day...), so, needless to say, getting gear that fits properly is exhausting, if not impossible.  Skins has solved this issue (thank you. Truly.) by implementing their Size Matters sizing system that offers their tights in short, regular, and long configurations in every size!

  • Best sizing system of any company I've seen (S, R, and T options in all sizes)
  • Best (and very accurate) sizing chart (as seen above) of any line I've seen so far
  • Gradient Compression technology throughout
  • Memory MX fabric
  • Comfortably shaped crotch (ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh)
  • Excellent temperature and moisture management
  • 50+ UV protection built in
  • Lifetime antimicrobial treatment

In conclusion, I think the Skins line of compression gear is truly world class.  They Are expensive.  As the company puts it,

"Why should I choose SKINS over a less expensive pair of tights?
Because no -one's invested as much time or money into research - or been able to replicate the benefits SKINS have been proven to deliver.  SKINS' unique engineered gradient compression has been developed by leading sports physicians over years of scientific research.  And the medical benefits that SKINS provide are backed by independent testing."

What I can say, is that for me, these shorts and tights have become my go-to staple on every run -  I love them

For more information, check out Skins own FAQ page: 

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