Compression shorts have become a very popular item of sports apparel. Few data exist about whether they influence athletic performance. The purpose of this study was to determine whether compression shorts affected vertical jump performance after different fatigue tasks (i.e., endurance, strength, and power). In addition, experiments on the influence of a compression garment on joint position sense at the hip and muscle movement velocity upon landing impact was also studied. Healthy college age men and women participated in the various studies. Subjects were thoroughly familiarized with the jump tests and all other experimental techniques. Jumps were performed on an AMTI force plate which was interfaced to a computer with customized software used to determine jump power. Ten consecutive maximal counter movement jumps with arms held at waist level were performed. The compressive garment had no effect on the maximal power of the highest jump in either men or women. The compressive garment significantly enhanced mean power output in the jump test both before and after different fatigue tasks. The compressive garment enhanced joint position sense at the hip at 45°and 60°of flexion. A compression garment also significantly reduced the vertical velocity of muscle movement upon landing. These data indicate that compression shorts do not improve maximal jump power output. However, an enhanced mean power output during the repetitive maximal jump test was observed when wearing a compression garment. The performance improvement observed may be due to reduced muscle oscillation upon impact, psychological factors, and/or enhanced joint position sense.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health