Pain is all part of the game. But it shouldn’t keep you from doing what you love. If you are a basketball player and suffer from tennis elbow, tendinitis, arthritis, or general soreness, it might be wise to invest in a compression arm sleeve to help alleviate that discomfort.
Compression sleeves serve a variety of purposes. First of all they offer support and stability to your arms thanks to the tight, snug fit. They also help reduce arm and elbow pain as well as swelling. If your muscles have better support, the less fatigued they’ll become and the better you’ll play. Sleeves also help for a faster and easier recovery after your game or workout.
Most also offer UV sun protection, anti-slip bands to prevent sleeve movement, anti-bacterial fabric, and moisture-wicking technology to keep you dry, cool, and comfortable all game long.
And, to be clear, while many basketball players do use compression sleeves, they can be worn in many other sports. Football, baseball, tennis, golf, cycling, volleyball — pretty much any sport or activity where you need extra elbow and arm support. Actually, you don’t even need to be injured to wear one. Compression sleeves also work great for pre-game preparation as they help get your muscles warmed up faster.
We’ve compiled a list below to help you make your decision. So keep reading to learn more about some of the most popular and highest rated compression arm sleeves for athletes available on the market today.
1. McDavid 6500 Hex Compression Shooter Sleeve
McDavid is one of the leading producers in sports compression sleeves and their 6500 Hex Shooter Sleeve is one of the most highest-rated and popular among professional basketball players. Made of 80 percent nylon and 20 percent spandex, the main highlights of the sleeve are the 9mm thick Hex Technology elbow pad and the Hydrovent Moisture Management Technology, which wicks moisture away from the skin to keep your arm cool and dry.
Another plus of the sleeve is that it’s very long, extending from your wrist to the bicep. That added length will maintain muscle warmth all throughout the arm, while offering extra protection. Other features of McDavid’s Compression Shooter Sleeve, which comes in a single unit, is that it fits either arm, is machine washable and dryable, and it comes in a dozen colors of various sizes.
Price: From $14.99 (most in the $20 and up range); price varies depending on color, size, and availability
- Has a built-in 9mm Hex Technology elbow pad
- Moisture Management Technology wicks moisture away from the skin
- Available in 12 different colors
- Some users felt the sleeve slipped down their arm too easily
- Some users thought the package should include 2 sleeves considering the price
2. Sports Compression Arm Sleeve by Bucwild
Bucwild has some wild and creative designs on their Sports Compression Arm Sleeve, which can be used for basketball, golf, baseball, football, running, tennis, volleyball — really any sport you need extra arm support. Available in over 2 dozen creative colors and prints, the sleeve comes in both adult and youth sizes.
Featuring UV sun protection, the sleeve is ideal for those who participate in outdoor activities. Providing excellent arm and elbow support, the sleeve runs from your wrist to your bicep, so it offers added protection (sun and other abrasions) for your entire arm. Made of 80 percent nylon and 20 percent spandex, it has a moisture wicking fabric that keeps your arm dry and cool by pulling sweat away from the skin.
Price: From $5.99 to $12.99; price varies depending on size, style, and availability
- Contains UV sun protection
- Made of moisture wicking material for quick drying
- Available in adult and youth sizes in over 2 dozen colors/designs
- Doesn’t have an elbow pad
- Some users felt the sleeve didn’t run true to size
3. Compression Arm Sleeves (1 Pair) by CompressionZ
Unlike the first two products talked about above, these compression arm sleeves by CommpressionZ come in a pair. So you’ll get 2 sleeves for just under $20, which is a pretty good deal. Available in 5 different colors and multiple sizes, these can be worn for a variety of sports, including basketball, baseball, tennis, football, and volleyball, to name a few. They are perfect for anyone — athlete or not — who needs extra arm and elbow support.
Now for the sleeves themselves. The high performance fabric features 4-way stretch technology and flat lock seams stitching so you’ll get excellent durability and the full range of motion needed to compete at a high level. It runs from your wrist to your biceps, so you’ll have full arm protection and stability. Another highlight is the material is anti-itch and anti-bacterial and those will prevent skin irritation and odor.
Price: $19.26 (45 percent off MSRP)
- Made of an anti-odor and anti-itch material
- Flat lock seam stitching and 4-way stretch technology for durability and flexibility
- Comes in a pair (2 sleeves) and available in 5 different colors
- Some users who suffer from lymphedema didn’t think they offered effective protection
- Some users felt they don’t run true to size
4. Kunto Fitness Elbow Brace Compression Support Sleeve
Kunto Fitness’ Compression Support Sleeve is different from the other listed above as it’s focus is on the elbow. The sleeve is shorter, but it is ideal for the athlete suffering from tendinitis, arthritis, tennis elbow, and general pain and inflammation.
It is durably built with 4-way stretch material making it not only long-lasting, but very flexible. The sleeve is ventilated for added breathability and your arm temperature stays regulated. Kunto Fitness’ product also features a no-slip grip, and comes in 4 different sizes (extra small to large) and a 100 percent manufacturer’s warranty.
- Ventilated sleeve for added breathability and to regulate arm temperature
- 4-way stretch material for maximum flexibility
- No-slip grip fitting
- Some users felt if the sleeve was too tight, the stitching would irritate
- Some might not like that it isn’t a full-length arm sleeve (elbow area only)
5. Blitzu Elbow Brace Compression Arm Sleeves
Blitzu combines stability, comfort, and flexibility in a stylish, inexpensive design with their Compression Arm Sleeves. You get a pair (2 sleeves) for under $15 for an excellent deal. Available in 4 sizes, the sleeve is unisex and can likely fit most teens and adults. It also comes with a 100 percent money back or replacement guarantee.
The sleeve is constructed of Power+ Premium Performance Fabric and has a number of useful features to ensure flexibility and durability. Not only does the sleeve ensure arm stability, aid relieve pain, and help prevent injury, but it also has 100 percent UV protection, no-slip grip, anti-bacterial fabric, and moisture wicking technology. All of these characteristics are key in helping you get maximum performance on the court or field.
Price: $12.97 (21 percent off MSRP)
- 100 percent latex free
- Has 100 percent UV sun protection
- Very low price for 1 pair (2 sleeves)
- Some users felt it was an awkward size, being extra tight on the biceps
- Some users felt the stitching irritated the arm
6. Sports Compression Arm Sleeve by B Driven Sports
B Driven Sports offers dozens of colors and prints for their compression arm sleeve. But it’s not just all the available styles that make athletes buy this compression arm sleeve. They pack a ton of innovative technology and useful features to make a high-performance and effective sleeve.
Featuring flat lock seams stitching, you can be sure the sleeve will be durable and be able to stand the rigors of high-intensity action. B Driven Sports’ “Silicone Endura Band” is a strip that prevents the sleeve from sliding or moving around. Also with UV protection, it has anti-bacterial and moisture wicking fabrics, which will, respectively, minimize odors and pull sweat away from your skin to keep you dry, cool, and comfortable all game long.
Price: $13.99 (12 percent off MSRP)
- A “Silica Endura Band” prevents the sleeve from sliding
- Bacteria-resistant, moisture wicking, and UV protection
- Dozens of colors, prints, and styles available in adult and youth sizes
- Does not come in a pair, only 1 sleeve
- Some users feel the no-slip band is too tight
7. Under Armour Performance HeatGear Sleeve
Under Armour rapidly climbed the athletic gear ladder over the past few years, providing top-notch workout gear and jerseys for sports teams. So you can expect the same high-quality construction when it comes to their Performance HeatGear Sleeve.
UA’s HeatGear is their moisture-wicking technology, which is designed to pull sweat away from your body to keep you cool, dry, and comfortable throughout your entire workout or game. Made of 80 percent polyester and 20 percent spandex, you’ll get full range of motion and the necessary flexibility to play at a high level. And Under Armour’s
“Second Skin” will help create a tight fit to aid in circulation and the full-length sleeve provides full arm protection.
- UA’s HeatGear technology wicks moisture away from your body to keep you dry and cool
- Second-skin technology increases circulation
- Available in 6 different colors
- Won’t fit smaller arms or youth sizes
- Does not come in a pair — only 1 sleeve
8. Premium Arm Compression Sleeves (1 pair) by Endurance Shield 360
Endurance Shield 360’s Premium Arm Compression Sleeves are designed to offer stability and support, especially for those suffering from lymphedema. You get a unisex pair, meaning 2 sleeves, and they come with a 100 percent money back guarantee.
Ideal for all sports, they are made of high-quality nylon and lycra blend so you can expect breathable comfort and excellent flexibility, but also support and protection over your entire arm. They’re also beneficial for the athlete who likes to train or play in cold weather.
- Works well for those who suffer from lymphedema
- Comes in a pair (2 sleeves)
- 100 percent money back guarantee
- Some users felt the size chart wasn’t accurate
- Some users felt the sleeve was too restricting in the upper arm
Find more Premium Arm Compression Sleeves (1 pair) by Endurance Shield 360 information and reviews here.
9. Coolomg Combat Basketball Pad Protector & Shooting Arm/Elbow Sleeve
The Coolomg Combat Basketball Shooting Arm Sleeve is highlighted by a padded elbow for maximum protection. That extra padding isn’t bulky and shouldn’t interfere or make you alter your shot. Durable and effective, the sleeve is available in over 40 different stylish colors and patterns.
Coolomg has added a few other innovative ideas to enhance the performance of the sleeve. They offer UV protection and the fabric features moisture-wicking material so you stay cool and dry on the court. And don’t worry about the sleeve moving out of place; Coolomg’s non-slip strip is designed to help keep it in place so you can focus on the game. Backed by a 100 percent money back guarantee, the sleeves are machine washable.
Price: From $8.99; price varies depending on size, color, and availability
- Soft, protective elbow pad
- UV protection, moisture wicking, and anti-slip
- Available in over 40 different colors
- Some users felt the sleeves ran too small in size
- Does not come in a pair — just 1 sleeve
Find more Coolomg Combat Basketball Pad Protector & Shooting Arm/Elbow Sleeve information and reviews here.
10. AceList Protective Compression Shooter Sleeve
AceList’s Protective Compression Shooter Sleeve is available in 2 colors (black and white) and you also have the option of purchasing 1 sleeve or a pair (2 sleeves). Either way, both come at a bargain price.
AceList packs a lot of useful features into an item that costs well under $15. The sleeve itself is UV protected at SPF 50+ and is highlighted by moisture-wicking fabric, sewn-in bands around the biceps portion to prevent slipping, padded elbows for extra protection, anti-itch material for less irritation, and anti-bacterial material to reduce odors.
Price: One sleeve $6.99 — Two sleeves white $9.99; black $11.99
- UV protection and windproof for colder days
- Padded elbow for added protection
- Available in a single or pair (2 sleeves)
- Some users felt the sleeves ran small in size
- Some users experienced durability issues