While the most important thing to wear during a basketball game is your uniform, there are a ton of other pieces of gear many players like to wear. You have headbands, armbands, and even shooting sleeves. There is an endless combination of gear you can wear in the modern day.
However, you have also likely seen NBA players (or any other basketball players) wearing tights underneath their shorts. These tights can be short, reach down to the knee or even be full length and extend the entire leg.
But just why do players do this? What sorts of benefits do they provide players? Well, they are called compression pants or shorts and they have several different benefits and uses for players, some of which we will look at now.
1. They Can Increase Blood Flow
One huge benefit of wearing tights or compression gear is increased blood flow. This is incredibly important for athletes as increasing blood flow can get more oxygen to the muscles. Muscles require a sufficient amount of oxygen to perform, so the more oxygen in the blood, the better you’ll likely perform.
Increasing blood flow can also help your cells grow healthier and improve the function of your internal organs. Long term effects of increased blood flow even include bettering the body’s ability to fight off certain infections.
Muscles get cold after standing around or sitting on the bench for long periods, and tights can keep them engaged and ensure you’re always ready for action. This can also help the effects of stretching last longer.
2. They Can Reduce the Chance of Injury and Protect You
Compression tights can also be helpful in reducing your injuries. They keep all of your muscles exactly where they should be, which can help avoid sprains, strains, pulls and other common ailments. This supports your muscles, which can be a very comfortable feeling during a game.
In addition to keeping everything in the right place, compression gear can also protect you from some impact injuries. It provides a barrier between the court and your skin and can save you from a lot of painful burns and rubs. It’s better to ruin a pair of tights than it is to suffer a nasty burn on your leg.
Also, some compression tights even come with padding that can protect your hips, knees or other sensitive body parts from damage. These can be a life saver during hard falls. Injuries can still happen with compression gear, of course, but it can help reduce your chances of suffering from one.
3. They Can Help Absorb Sweat
When you play basketball, sweating is essentially par for the course. Even if you’re only shooting hoops in your driveway by yourself, you’re bound to sweat a little bit. Sweating during a game of basketball is quite annoying and doesn’t leave you smelling the freshest.
While compression gear won’t stop you from sweating, it can help you fight it. Many compression garments and tights wick moisture away from your body, as they are so light and often made out of breathable material. This can also help keep you cool, help your clothes last longer and more.
4. They Look Good
Not every player wear compression gear solely for the health and injury reduction benefits. Many will wear them simply because they look good. Sports, especially basketball, is more fashionable than ever before. Many tights and related compression gear is quite sleek and comes in a variety of colors.
This can help you match or even contrast your uniform colors. Looking good can also help you feel more confident and as you know, confidence is incredibly important during sports. If you look good, you feel good and when you feel good, you often play good.
Hopefully, you’re now able to understand the benefits and merits of players wearing tights or compression shorts under their uniforms. While they are by no means required every time you play, they are a good and helpful piece of gear to consider.
Do you have other types of gear you like to wear when playing basketball that helps you feel great? If so, don’t hesitate to let us know in the comments!