We’re no strangers to physical therapy. It’s an occupational necessity. PTs, chiropractors, personal trainers—these are the folks that patch us up and make us stronger; the miracle workers that help us recover from one adventure and then properly prepare for the next.
Sports medicine professionals don’t just look at our bodies differently, but they look at gear differently, too. From massage rollers to knee braces and compression socks, this gear comes from the labs of sports medicine-minded companies. And all of it impressed Active Junky gear testers.
CEP Compression Socks
We challenge you to find a sock with more technology behind it. Unless there’s an Apple iSock with a Bluetooth-enabled sweat management system (which, for all we know, there might be) you’re going to be hard pressed to find a more performance-driven sock. CEP Compression was born in Germany, an offshoot from the high-grade medical compression systems used in hospitals. Taking this tech out of sterile environments and into grit and grime of outdoor sports was a natural progression for these European outdoor lovers. To date, we’ve tried most of CEP’s line, ranging from their running socks to their ski and snowboarding socks. While they feel a little stiff the first time you wear them, once you’re locked in, you’ll have a tough time returning to the flimsy fibers you used to rock.
Best For: Taking care of your body while encouraging peak performance.
Just say it: Rad Rod. It has a way of rolling off the tongue, does it not? It also has a way of rolling out sore muscles. From the calves to the upper back and back again, this roller is one of our favorites. Why? Namely because of it’s stiffness. Firmer than most rollers on the market (unless you’re super hardcore and only use PVC pipe), the Rad Rod is as versatile as it is stiff. Work out the kinks yourself or have a friend (Read: PT) dig in to those hard to roll places. Also, the Rad Rod is on the skinny side, making it more travel friendly.
Best For: Multisport athletes, cooling down after a heavy adventure
Pro-tec Athletics 3D Flat Premium Knee Support
An affordable, functional piece, the minimalist Knee Brace made a huge difference for one of our gear testers who was plagued by runner’s knee. The grippy interior didn’t slip during sweaty activity and the slim fit worked under long johns while snowboarding. Designed for both mid-activity performance and post-workout recoveries (increases bloodflow through compression), the Pro-Tec Athletics 3D Flat Premium Knee Support earned top marks.
Best For: Minor tweaks, getting back into the game without a full-on brace, recovery.
Fly Massage Roller
Is the foam roller not cutting it? Need something portable? Look no further than Addaday’s Fly Massage Roller. Unlike similar rollers, the Fly Massage Roller has a Skin Surface Technology on one of the wheels, a skin-friendly material that allows you to dig without worrying about the roller pinching. Aside from this chief upgrade, the Fly fits ergonomically in the hand, allowing you to maximize massage pressure while minimizing discomfort. Note: the folks at Addaday are adamant about getting educated: you can check out there tutorials here.
Best For: Travel, self-massage, working out tight point