Bumps and bruises, injuries, and muscle pain are all part of endurance sports training, and it’s important to take care of yourself as these injuries happen. Here are six different recovery items that athletes should consider when you look to maximize recovery. Be aware that some of these products aren’t cheap, so be vigilant and do some research before making a purchasing decision.
Moji Knee Ice Wrap
The Moji Knee Ice Wrap is a great product for athletes trying to ice a bum knee, or patients recovering from knee surgery. The Moji cold cells are so much better than a simple ice pack when it comes to recovery, because it immediately begins to help the knee – and the brace is comfortable to sit and walk around in. The cells are soft and pliable and shouldn’t provide any discomfort while wearing it, though it’s recommended to not use it for more than 20 minutes.
The $99.95 MSRP might scare away some athletes, but for runners with knee problems, this could be an ideal product. I don’t have any knee-related injuries, but enjoyed using the Moji Knee after intense trail workouts or any races longer than 10K.
The Stick Marathon Stick
The Stick’s Marathon Stick retails for $31.95 and is a great product for athletes needing a light massage following a workout. The Marathon Stick is a product designed for runners and is made of flexible plastic that helps prevent muscle injuries when used appropriately.
I especially recommend using the Marathon Stick to help break up lactic acid following a hard workout, with the massage device helping provide faster muscle recovery. It’s easy to integrate it into your post-workout stretch routine and is a highly-recommended product.
Biofreeze Pain Relieving Gel
Biofreeze has a small assortment of products, but I still favor the Pain Relieving Gel best, with a 4 ounce gel tube available for $15.49. Highly recommended by a local sports chiropractor, the Biofreeze gel is suitable for the shin, knee, thigh, hips, abs, forearms, bicep, chest, and shoulders.
I don’t know how or why Biofreeze works, but it greatly helps, especially when used during a post-workout massage. Be careful not to use too much, because it’s possible you’ll feel an intense tingling sensation that might discourage you from trying it again in the future.
Thermophore maxHEAT Plus Arthritis Pad
Whether an athlete wants to use cold compression or heat for recovery, both have obvious advantages and disadvantages. As simplistic – and excruciating – as an ice bath can be, I sometimes prefer a bit of heat treatment.
The Thermophore maxHEAT Plus Arthritis Pad has a $109.99 MSRP and is the appropriate size to cover most of your leg for 20-minute treatments. You can use the heat pad both for sports industries or any strained muscles and ligaments you might acquire over time. This is an interesting product because the user experiences moist heat but no water is added, and there is a four-stage setting that provides excellent treatment during the 20-minute session.
110% Play Harder Overdrive Compression + Ice Kit
The 110% Play Harder Overdrive Compression + Ice Kit is a fascinating product might have a $100 MSRP, but it’s much more than just a pair of compression socks. Immediately after putting the socks on, it’s impressive that they form fit to your legs and feet and don’t feel tight. The socks are comfortable and the ice sleeve is a tad bit thicker and has openings at the heel and toe sections.
It’s great to be able to wear compression clothing and use ice therapy without the ice pack sitting directly on your skin. The socks are comfortable for running and the benefits of compression running provide both injury prevention and performance enhancements for runners.
SpiderTech Calf and Arch Kinesiology Tape
SpiderTech Calf & Arch kinesiology tape is a phenomenal product for athletes, and it can be used both during and after an event. Designed to help with calf strains, posterior shin splints, ligament damage, and other physical ailments, the SpiderTech pre-cut calf & arch tape is the best kinesiology tape I’ve tested.
It can be difficult to apply the SpiderTech properly the first time, which is why I recommend a chiropractor or sports massage specialist helps you. For men, I highly recommended shaving your legs before trying to put the Calf and Arch tape on, as it’ll help with cleaning the skin beforehand and allows for the tape to stick to your leg better. Each spider is $6.95.
Even if you train and race without a significant amount of muscle pain, using these types of products can still aid in recovery. You might not need any of the products listed, but should be a good indicator of the different products currently available. If you have a specific injury that continues to bother you, it’s recommended to consult with your physician or chiropractor before trying anything too outlandish.