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Compression Garment Promotes Muscular Strength Recovery after Resistance Exercise


Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: December 2014 - Volume 46 - Issue 12 - p 2265–2270
doi: 10.1249/MSS.0000000000000359
Applied Sciences

Purpose This study aimed to investigate the effects of wearing a compression garment (CG) for 24 h on changes in muscular strength and blood parameters over time after resistance exercise.

Methods Nine trained men conducted resistance exercises (10 repetitions of 3–5 sets at 70% of one-repetition maximum (1RM) for nine exercises) in two trials, wearing either a CG or a normal garment (CON) for 24 h after exercise. Recovery of muscular strength, blood parameters, muscle soreness, and upper arm and thigh circumference were compared between the trials.

Results Both trials showed decreases in maximal strength after the exercise (P < 0.05). However, the CG trial showed faster recovery of one-repetition maximum for the chest press from 3 to 8 h after exercise (P < 0.05). Recovery of maximal knee extension strength was also improved in the CG trial 24 h after exercise (P < 0.05). The CG trial was associated with lower muscle soreness and subjective fatigue scores the following morning (P < 0.05). The upper arm and thigh circumferences were significantly higher during the recovery period in the CON trial, whereas no change was observed in the CG trial. Blood lactate, insulin like growth factor-1, free testosterone, myoglobin, creatine kinase, interleukin 6, and interleukin 1 receptor antagonist concentrations for 24 h after exercise were similar in both trials.

Conclusions Wearing a CG after resistance exercise facilitates the recovery of muscular strength. Recovery for upper body muscles significantly improved within 3–8 h after exercise. However, facilitation of recovery of lower limb muscles by wearing the CG took a longer time.

1Faculty of Sport and Health Science, Ritsumeikan University, Kusatsushi, Shiga, JAPAN; and 2Graduate School of Sport and Health Science, Ritsumeikan University, Kusatsu, Shiga, JAPAN

Address for correspondence: Kazushige Goto, Ph.D., Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences, Ritsumeikan University, 1-1-1, Nojihigashi, Kusatsu, Shiga, 525–8577, Japan; E-mail:

Submitted for publication October 2013.

Accepted for publication April 2014.

© 2014 American College of Sports Medicine