What are the best knee sleeves?
Knee sleeves are compressive sleeves you can wear over your knees for ample support during workouts and physical activity.
They are commonly used by people with knee and joint pain, as well as professional powerlifters and athletes.
Knee sleeves help with proper alignment and leg stability for easier and safer lower body workouts like squats and deadlifts.
You can also wear them for walking, running, and playing sports.
There are a lot of sleeves and braces out there, so we’ve put together a list of the 10 best knee sleeves on the market to help you figure out which ones are best for you.
The Best Knee Sleeves Compared
Our equipment lists are created by researching the best-reviewed products from the most reputable companies and web sources.
Here’s our list of the 10 best knee sleeves:
In A Rush? Here’s Our Top Pick:
10. Modvel – Knee Sleeve Set
Modvel offers a great-value knee sleeve set with this two-pack option. The knee brace is suitable for men and women, with small, medium, large, and extra-large sizes.
The brand says these medical-grade knee pads are designed to alleviate joint pain and help with arthritis and ACL/meniscus tears.
This is a popular multi-sport choice used by those with an active lifestyle, covering everything from skiing to mountaineering, weightlifting, to tennis.
You can wear Modvel knee sleeves comfortably every day or just when you need them to protect your knees and promote quick injury recovery.
Made from spandex, nylon, and rubber, the sleeve has an ergonomic design and medium thickness for the ideal balance of comfort and protection.
There are also six colors to choose from: black, blue, green, pink, orange, and skin color.
- Two-pack for a great value.
- Breathable spandex, nylon, and rubber.
- Ergonomic design for daily performance.
- Double silicone strips for a comfortable fit.
- Advanced fitted technology.
- Six colorful options.
- Can sometimes slip, especially if the size is too big.
9. Cambivo – Knee Sleeves
Cambivo knee sleeves are a cost-effective compression option made of 65% nylon, 20% latex, and 15% spandex.
There are five sizes ranging from small to double XL, and if you want more compression and a super snug fit, you can always go down a size.
The compression sleeve is designed for joint pain relief and to help with meniscus tears and arthritis, especially during running and hiking.
Innovative 3D knitting technology provides adequate pressure to support and stabilize the knee while also keeping the area warm and flexible.
You can minimize stiffness throughout workouts and daily exercise with a 4-dimensional stretchable and durable elastic design.
An evenly distributed weave gives the entire knee the same amount of pressure and support, from the patella to all the surrounding joints and muscles.
- Budget-friendly two-pack option.
- 3D knitted weave for stable pressure.
- Keeps knees warm and minimizes stiffness.
- Optimal compression for running, bicycling, golf, and weight training.
- Features double anti-slip silicone.
- 12 colors available.
- Not suitable for latex allergies.
8. Neenca – Gel Pad Knee Sleeve
The gel pad knee sleeve from Neenca is a professional knee brace offering compression support for impressive joint pain relief.
Made with medical-grade knee pads for men and women, each knee pad comes with patella gel pads and double-metal side spring stabilizers.
Many people use these gel pad compression sleeves to soothe joint inflammation, meniscus tears, ACL injuries, and arthritis.
Neenca has an exclusive patent for spring knee support technology, with specially contoured patella gel pads to surround and support the entire kneecap.
This innovative design keeps joints stable and disperses pressure for warm knees and lubricated joints.
The company stands by its guarantee of no allergies or itchiness with this design, which features non-slip silicone strips to prevent sliding during exercise.
- Gel pads for extra comfort.
- Designed for pain recovery and sports protection.
- Medical-grade, free of allergens and itchy materials.
- Metal spring stabilizers for well-rounded support.
- High-elastic fabric and non-slip silicone strips.
- Seven color options.
- Some users say it runs too small in size.
7. Crucial Compression – Knee Compression Sleeves
As the top knee sleeve for arthritis, Crucial Compression lives up to its name with instant support and soothing stability.
The ComfortFlex design and power support technology alleviate arthritis symptoms with a no-slip double grip for comfortable wear all day long.
The breathable, lightweight design is recommended for ACL and MCL injury recovery and endurance activities like running and skiing, as well as sports like basketball or soccer.
The brand says its knee compression sleeves deliver fast pain relief with an immediate difference for less soreness, swelling, and stiffness.
They give you a decent range of motion and flexibility while offering ample support for daily exercise.
These knee sleeves are also designed to heat muscles and boost blood circulation, minimizing lactic acid buildup for better performance, recovery, and injury prevention.
- Recommended for arthritis.
- Easy to put on for instant support.
- Comfortable fit with double silicone grip to avoid slipping.
- Lightweight and breathable fabric.
- Suitable for many sports.
- Not hypo-allergenic.
- Doesn’t provide as much support for a meniscus tear.
6. McDavid – Hex Knee Compression Sleeve
As the top knee sleeve for basketball players, McDavid offers foam compression sieves that accommodate high-impact activities and body contact during sports.
The closed-cell foam padding offers ample knee protection, while the cool and dry material has moisture management tech for advanced cooling sensations.
It keeps muscles at the right temperature to minimize fatigue and cramping for faster, stronger performance.
Hex knee sleeves from McDavid are most commonly worn by basketball players, but they are also good for volleyball, weightlifting, football, and many other sports.
These sleeves are used for physical therapy and rehabilitation too.
The extended length offers excellent protection from cuts and scrapes, and the super-thick 9mm Hex technology is unmatched on the market.
- 9mm Hex technology for ultimate thickness with a breathable fit.
- Ideal for basketball and high-impact sports.
- Extended length offers more protection against scrapes and sprains.
- Cooling compression to support muscle temperature.
- Machine washable.
- Doesn’t provide as much medial or lateral support.
5. Gymreapers – Knee Sleeves
The best knee sleeves for weightlifting come from Gymreapers, a trusted brand known for its longevity and maximized athletic performance.
The 7mm neoprene material has reinforced stitching for strong compression that helps with mobility, muscle recovery, and injury prevention.
It’s especially good for stopping knee pain that can flare up from heavy lifting and consistent squats.
Many people find success in rehab and recovery with this thick, premium-grade performance knee sleeve.
The heat retention and warming effect of the neoprene material also keep muscle temperature and function under control.
The brand promises strenuous product testing and research to ensure the highest level of knee support during any physical activity.
Plus, every knee sleeve comes with a reinforced gym bag for easy carrying.
- 7mm neoprene and reinforced stitching.
- Ideal for weightlifting and injury prevention.
- Premium-grade performance septic system.
- Soothes knee pain.
- Comes with a new gym bag.
- Heavier compression isn’t for everyone.
4. Iron Bull Strength – Knee Sleeves
As the best knee sleeves for cross-training, Iron Bull Strength offers 7mm thickness and a snug non-slip grip to keep you comfortable during any workout.
This high-performance knee sleeve is used by men and women for weightlifting and powerlifting, with strong neoprene compression offering maximum support and comfort.
The compression relieves muscle joint pain and aids muscle recovery.
Iron Bull Strength features a double silicone gel wave that holds the sleeve up even during the high-intensity movements of cross-fit workouts or running.
This compression and stability solution is also used by bodybuilders as USPA & IPL approved competition gear.
A modern 3D design offers a comfortably contoured yet breathable fit for ideal joint compression and warmth.
- Ideal for cross-training and lifting.
- 3D knee support with 7mm thickness.
- Neoprene design includes an anti-slip grip.
- Promotes muscle strength.
- Protects against injury.
- Moisture-wicking and a breathable fit.
- May feel tight at first before stretching out.
3. Jiufentian – Copper Knee Sleeve
A favorite knee sleeve for its undeniable compression powers, Jiufentian copper sleeves offer excellent arthritis pain relief and support.
Made from copper fiber and spandex, this sleeve supports healthy healing and injury recovery by slowing shock and decompression.
It also disperses knee pressure to boost blood circulation and protect against injury during sports and physical movement.
The 60% copper fiber cloth, 32% nylon, and 6% spandex/rubber material relieve muscle soreness and swelling.
The new 3D weaving technology absorbs sweat and dries quickly to stay comfortable even with all-day wear.
It’s also incredibly elastic, so you can slide it on and off easily without pinching your skin. Plus, Jiufentian says its sleeves shouldn’t slip even after two hours of continuous gym exercise.
- Copper-infused fabric promotes healing.
- Ideal for arthritis pain relief and injury management.
- Stable patella with partial pressure design.
- Easy to pull on and keep up.
- Suitable for light walking/working or intense fitness activities.
- Some people struggle with sizing.
2. Bauerfeind Sports – Knee Sleeve
As the best knee sleeve for ample athletic support, a Bauerfeind knee brace features medical-grade compression with a patellar knee pad for impressive stabilizing power.
The unique design strongly supports knee movement during sports like basketball, baseball, football, soccer, lacrosse, running, tennis, and weight training.
The gentle compression alleviates high-impact forces and protects against strains and overuse injuries.
Bauerfeind Sports states its anatomically contoured pad provides pressure throughout the kneecap.
With every movement, the pad, and knitted fabric massage muscles and connective tissue to keep pain under control and prevent serious injuries.
The sleeve stabilizes muscles for better joint stability, reducing stress on your knees for more comfort and freedom of movement.
- Strong knee stabilization for sports.
- Regulated compression and targeted relief.
- Lightweight air knit fabric is easy to clean.
- Moisture-wicking material prevents sweat and odor.
- Knitted fabric massages muscles and connective tissues.
- Has XS sizes all the way through XXL.
- Firmer fit for athletic support than some other sleeves.
- Tight fit may irritate sensitive skin.
- Only one sleeve per pack.
1. Powerlix – Knee Compression Sleeve
The top knee sleeve overall comes from Powerlix, a trusted manufacturer of sleeves, braces, and compression socks.
With extra length to fully support the knee area, this sleeve design is preferred for running, weightlifting, basketball, and other sports.
With sizes ranging from small to XXL and five stylish colors to choose from, Powerlix gives you the best results for daily physical activity.
The high level of support in these sleeves comes from the 4-way compression and 3D knitting technology.
This flexible full brace design has a breathable fabric that eliminates sweat and bad odors with a non-slip cuff band for the best fit.
Plus, the knee braces offer stable pressure for the entire knee joint, making it a great choice for those who struggle with knee pain that otherwise gets in the way of their fitness and lifestyle goals.
- Soft yet strong compression fabric.
- Versatile ergonomic design suits all sports.
- Ideal for injury prevention.
- Anti-slip silicone cuff and odor-resistant material.
- 360-degree protection for optimal joint temperature and blood circulation.
- Some users report sizing issues.
FAQs About Knee Sleeves
Here are our answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about knee sleeves:
Q: What Is the Point of Knee Sleeves?
Knee sleeves are designed to protect joints and ligaments and support the knee during workouts and physical activity.
They aim to alleviate joint pain, minimize inflammation, prevent overloaded knees and the associated health issues of lifting too much and hurting your knees.
Knee sleeves have been proven to support knee function after injury, too. Compression sleeves can be worn just during exercise or throughout the whole workday, depending on your needs.
Q: What Are Knee Sleeves Good For?
Knee sleeves are good for combating joint pain and preventing injury to your knees and legs.
Many people use knee sleeves during exercise or manual labor, as this extra layer of protection helps to alleviate pain from inflammation and pressure.
Lightweight knee sleeves are ideal for low-intensity exercise, while medium or high compression sleeves are used by people who need extra support or plan to do a lot of heavy lifting.
Q: Do Knee Sleeves Really Work?
The best knee sleeves work well by providing adequate support for the knee and surrounding areas during physical activities.
Studies show that a knee sleeve immediately improves pain and knee function for those affected by knee osteoarthritis.
Instead of having all the pressure on your knees and letting them bear the brunt of the load, knee sleeves spread the pressure and impact out evenly to avoid inflammation and injury.
Whether you suffer from knee pain already or just don’t want to injure yourself during hardcore workouts, knee sleeves are an excellent choice trusted by many professional athletes around the globe.
Q: Do Knee Sleeves Make a Difference?
A knee compression sleeve can help you stay safe and comfortable while working out and even throughout daily activities.
From deadlifts to moving around at work, knee sleeves provide an extra layer of stability and support to protect your knee joints and ligaments.
Many doctors suggest knee sleeves for athletes who are doing a lot of lifting or heavy endurance activities.
A quality knee sleeve can also have a positive impact on those recovering from injuries like strains, sprains, and ACL tears.
Q: Are Knee Sleeves Bad for Your Knees?
As long as knee sleeves are worn properly, they are not bad for your knees. If you wear compression sleeves too tightly, they may cut off circulation and cause serious discomfort.
If your knee can breathe and you can still move comfortably with the sleeve on, it’s probably the right size.
Just remember that while knee sleeves provide valuable support and stability for your knee, you still need to be careful with your movements.
If you have unstable knees, a knee brace offers even more ligament support than a sleeve.
Q: Do Knee Sleeves Help With Knee Pain?
25% of adults suffer from frequent knee pain, and medical professionals often recommend knee sleeves to help with the pain.
Compressive sleeves control pain and swelling and offer more protection to prevent tweaking your knee and causing further pain.
There are different thicknesses available depending on how much support you need.
A lightweight sleeve with more flexibility may help with mild pain, and if you are recovering from a serious injury or plan to do heavy lifting, a medium or high-thickness sleeve is ideal.
Q: Are Knee Sleeves Good for Arthritis?
For 23% of all U.S. adults – more than 54 million people – with arthritis, knee compression sleeves are a good option to keep the joints warm and comfortable while reducing swelling.
Knee sleeves can relieve stiffness and offer extra support, and many doctors recommend neoprene compression sleeves as reliable treatment options for rheumatoid arthritis.
Q: When Should You Start Wearing Knee Sleeves?
You can start wearing knee sleeves whenever you want, keeping in mind that the sooner you wear them, the sooner you will have more support and stability for your knees.
Many people start wearing compression braces after an injury, whether it’s a strain, sprain, or tear.
If you have arthritis or are in need of a knee replacement, a knee sleeve can help alleviate symptoms and pain during daily activities and physical exercise.
If you want to get serious about lifting, medium or high-thickness knee sleeves are a good addition to your workout gear.
Q: Should I Get Knee Sleeves for Squats?
Knee sleeves are great for squats, especially if you have existing knee problems or are doing heavy squats regularly.
Knee sleeves can offer more support and stability during squatting and give you peace of mind that your body is protected throughout lifting exercises.
Even so, it’s important to maintain proper technique during every squat, as knee sleeves can only do so much to protect your joints, bones, and muscles.
Q: How Tight Should Knee Sleeves Be?
Knee sleeves should have a snug, tight fit, but they shouldn’t be tough enough that they pinch your knee and cut off circulation.
If you are struggling to move with the sleeve on, it’s probably too tight. At the same time, you want to ensure the right fit, so the sleeve doesn’t slip down.
For the best results, measure the circumference around your knee and check the sizing table before ordering new knee sleeves.
Q: What Is the Difference Between 3mm and 5mm Knee Sleeves?
3mm are lightweight and the thinnest option, making them good for occasional use and if you just want some extra support for running and sports.
3mm gives you a loose range of motion and not as much joint support compared to 5mm, which is the medium thickness often used by recreational lifters.
If you want more structure and support, a 5mm knee sleeve is a good option that’s still comfortable while providing extra stability.
Both 3mm and 5mm are more flexible and breathable than the thickest 7mm knee sleeves used by professional weightlifters.
Q: Are 5mm or 7mm Knee Sleeves Better?
The right knee sleeve thickness depends on what activities you are doing.
5mm knee sleeves are suitable for occasional weightlifting and recreational sports.
If you lift once or twice a week and mix it up with other workouts, medium thickness 5mm knee sleeves work just fine.
If you need something sturdier for daily lifting, 7mm knee sleeves are the best choice to keep your knees stiffer with the most protection.
Q: Which Knee Sleeve to Choose?
Choosing a knee sleeve comes down to personal preference and what feels most comfortable to you.
Usually, the best knee sleeves offer high compression, an ergonomic fit, and lightweight, breathable material.
Look for a combination of stable support and an easy, comfortable fit.
When you need extra support for your knees and legs, compression sleeves are the way to go.
Whether you just want to protect your knees during heavy lifting or you have an existing injury or illness, compression sleeves offer stability and structure to reduce inflammation and lower the risk of hurting yourself.
There are many options available, but remember to look for a new knee sleeve with an ergonomic design and breathable material.
Here’s a quick recap of the 10 best knee sleeves:
- Powerlix – Knee Compression Sleeve (Best Knee Sleeve Overall)
- Bauerfeind Sports – Knee Sleeve (Best Knee Sleeve For Support)
- Jiufentian – Copper Knee Sleeve (Best Knee Sleeve For Compression)
- Iron Bull Strength – Knee Sleeves (Best Knee Sleeves For Running)
- Gymreapers – Knee Sleeves (Best Knee Sleeves For Weightlifting)
- McDavid – Hex Knee Compression Sleeve (Best Knee Sleeve For Basketball)
- Crucial Compression – Knee Compression Sleeves (Best Knee Sleeve For Arthritis)
- Neenca – Gel Pad Knee Sleeve (Best Knee Sleeve With Gel Pad)
- Cambivo – Knee Sleeves (Best Budget Knee Sleeves)
- Modvel – Knee Sleeve Set (Best Knee Sleeve Value Pack)