It’s one of the things that climbers fear most–the dreaded forearm pump. Once it happens, you can no longer hold on. And depending on severity, it could mean the end of climbing for the day. Promising to delay, minimize, and possibly even prevent forearm pump, the VERTICS compression arm sleeves may just become your new favorite climbing partner.
Developed in conjunction with an orthopedic surgeon, VERTICS compression arm sleeves use two different knitting structures to create graduated compression from your wrist to your elbow. This promotes increased circulation in your forearm to both boost oxygen transfer to the muscles as well as flush out lactate buildup and its associated acidosis that leads to pump. The compression also helps stabilize the sinews and ligaments in your forearm for added support and muscle readiness.
You can wear your VERTICS compression arm sleeves shortly before climbing, while climbing, and after climbing. The company recommends that you keep wearing the sleeves for 2-3 hours after climbing and also the next day once again for 2-3 hours in order to support your recovery. The seamless construction ensures no hot spots or blisters from all day wear.
One set of VERTICS consists of two compression sleeves, each with a different design. To figure out the right size (S,M,L), measure your forearm in the thickest spot. A pair of compression arm sleeves retails for €45 (~$50) and can be purchased from the VERTICS website.
For me, forearm pump is usually the worst at the beginning of the season–with ice season just starting now, consider me intrigued on the efficacy of the VERTICS arm compression sleeves. One big question, however–how are these any better than normal compression arm sleeves from companies such as 2XU or Zensah? Perhaps having a strong upper body and a strong core are far more important for reducing pump (take the weight off your arms) and the only real way to get through it is mileage on the ice. Either way, sounds like a good experiment to me.