Volleyball arm sleeves are slowly becoming an essential part of our volleyball equipment. Why should you use them regularly? What are their benefits? I will share with you 9 reasons why you should consider buying and using arm sleeves regularly.
Arm sleeves vs long shirt
First of all, we need to answer the question of why we should use arm sleeves when we can wear a long shirt for training, which also covers our elbows and forearms. You can see long shirts or even long sleeve jerseys on many girls teams playing student competitions in the USA. In Europe, in the top volleyball leagues, long-sleeved jerseys are not as popular.
The main difference between arm sleeves and long shirts is that a long sleeve shirt will usually not have as many positive features, which I will describe later in the video, as arm sleeves.
Also, you will always have a sweaty long sleeve shirt in a certain color, you can’t mix and match it with another shirt. You will have to throw this long sleeve shirt in the washing machine after practice if you sweat in practice or a game.
Since the arm sleeves are smaller, they only cover our arms, so we can combine them better, take them off and use them more often at practice or games. Also, we don’t always have to have arm sleeves on both arms, we can use them individually. We can also wear them only at the beginning of practice to warm up and then take them off, or we can wear them only for serve receptions exercises. They are simply more variable than a long shirt.
Arm sleeves basics
The name makes it clear that we use arm sleeves on our arms. They are usually made of elastic material that gently wraps around our arms. A material that wicks sweat away from the body. Sometimes you see a type of arm sleeves that only cover your forearms, but I would recommend the classic compression sleeves that also cover your elbow and most of your biceps.
Probably the most popular are arm sleeves from Mizuno, these are used for example by players of the American national volleyball team. You can find a link to them at the bottom of the description, but Nike or Mc David also offer arm sleeves in several colours.
What is the main function of arm sleeves?
Probably the most important function of arm sleeves is to support the muscles and improve blood circulation, which thanks to the use of compression sleeves can be your advantage over other players. Simply put, the main function of compression sleeves is to improve and help regulate blood flow and circulation in the arms. These features are useful in almost any sport, but can be particularly beneficial for many people and different types of training, you also see compression arm sleeves used by runners, football players, basketball players, they are also used by cyclists, but most importantly they help us volleyball players.
Arm sleeves apply gentle pressure to the outer surface of the skin. This results in a gentle increase in blood pressure in the arms, which helps increase blood flow through the entire body. When the heart rate increases, the blood supply will also increase over time, helping to improve oxygen supply and increase energy levels.
You’ll receive better
I would argue that arm sleeves will help you receive or defend better in the field. First of all, they can make someone feel more secure when a hard attack is coming at them, which normally pinches us pretty badly when the ball is played. Some volleyball players may be afraid to pass a hard serve. Thanks to arm sleeves and their psychological support effect, his fears may be minor.
Secondly, thanks to arm sleeves, you won’t have sweaty hands that sometimes lead to inaccurate reception. This has often bothered me in a match or practice. For example, in Argentina, we trained almost the entire season in temperatures above 30 degrees, and we were sweating from the beginning of practice to the end in the hall. We changed several shirts at practice and were constantly wiping our hands on our shirts. With arm sleeves you won’t have to wipe your hands on your back. Also, because of the special surface of the volleyball arm sleeves, the ball won’t slip out of your hands. They should simply help you pass the ball better.
Preventing burn in a fall
Another important reason to use arm sleeves is to prevent getting burned when you fall in the field. I’m sure you know it, in the heat of match you jump for a difficult ball in the field, do everything you can to keep the ball from falling to the ground, you fly through the air, take the ball, but burn your elbow in the fall. You’re glad you took the ball, but on the other hand, now you have to think about the burnt elbow and possible treatment. And just volleyball arm sleeves will help you when you fall, you won’t burn your elbow and you will be able to fully concentrate on your performance.
Thanks to the compression function, arm sleeves will also protect you from injuries. This is similar to compression shirts. We wear them to keep our body warm, to wick sweat away from our body, and they also help prevent muscle injury. Arm sleeves fulfill the same role, they also keep our arms warm, protect our arm muscles, but in addition help us prevent elbow injuries.
When we were attacking a lot at practice, my elbow often hurt, much like a tennis player’s elbow hurts. Most of the time just resting and hitting less helped me, but if you wear arm sleeves you have far less chance of overloading your elbow and subsequent problems. Also, if you already have elbow problems, start wearing arm sleeves and you’ll see that they will help.
Skin and forearm protection
Speaking of problems, I have to mention the forearm pain after receiving hard balls. Every volleyball player encounters this when he starts with volleyball and play bump so after a while our forearms burn. Our skin and the muscles underneath are not used to being exposed to these bounces of the volleyball.
Over time, after a few practices, this pain diminishes and we don’t encounter it as often. On the other hand, if you’re on the receiving end and you’re passing, say, receptions fired at around 120 kilometers through a serve machine, you can expect your forearms to get a pretty good test. You can find pictures of professional players who have had bruises all over their forearms after such training. And arm sleeves can help you avoid these problems. Compression arm sleeves can also help prevent injuries by limiting over-extension and unnatural movements.
Help with muscle recovery
It’s not just in volleyball that pain caused by injury or stress can be reduced with moderate pressure. Compression arm sleeves work similarly to a bandage or brace and provide support for the elbow joint and arm muscles. With reduced stress, there is a greater chance of healing and better training. When the muscles have better circulation it can help a tired and overworked body recover faster from a workout.
Increase performance and reduce fatigue
Another reason to use volleyball compression arm sleeves is that they can help boost your overall performance. This is because they help increase oxygenation and blood flow to your muscles. More blood and oxygen flowing to your muscles means that your muscles can be used longer without fatigue.
In a long volleyball match, the longer your body and arms are in good shape, the better your chances of winning. One of the great benefits of using compression arm sleeves is that they help improve blood flow and circulation. It sounds strange because you might think that increased pressure or compression will slow down blood flow, but the opposite is true. In fact, pressure helps to increase blood pressure, thus increasing blood flow.
Related to this benefit, compression arm sleeves also help increase muscle oxygenation. Muscles need oxygen to function, and the more of it available in the bloodstream, the better their performance. Simply put, when performing any physical activity, compression arm sleeves can help improve overall performance.
Arms sleeves look cool
I can’t forget that arm sleeves are cool. They are made by the biggest sports equipment manufacturers in many colours and look fantastic. For example, the players of the women’s Brazilian volleyball team often use white arm sleeves, which, when combined with yellow jerseys, white knee socks and white shoes, look amazing.
Then you can see players wearing a different colour arm sleeve on each arm, or just a compression sleeve on one arm. It’s just fashionable to have arm sleeves and I expect to see them even more in the future, not only on amateur players but also volleyball stars will play in them more.
Arm sleeves are just an aid
But arm sleeves are just a tool. I don’t recommend putting everything on arm sleeves and relying on them alone as the miracle cure for all your volleyball problems. They won’t solve your technique problems. You can’t count on wearing arm sleeves to every practice your entire volleyball life. Then what would you do if you forgot them?
Don’t think of them that way, think of them as a good servant, but don’t ask for miracles. I hope my tips and reasons to use compression arm sleeves will help you become a better player.