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BadAngle41

Bracelayer Knee Stabilizing Compression Pants

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Bracelayer Knee Stabilizing Compression Pants are high-performance athletic tights built on a 4-way stretch, moisture wicking & anti-bacterial Lycra base which provides overall compression to help promote circulation and boost performance. 

What's make Bracelayer Compression Gear standout from the competition is our unique Tri-Tech construction which incorporates a thin layer of medical-grade, ventilated neoprene around the knees, IT bands and hips to improve balance and stability while reducing joint pain.

That's how Bracelayer describes their products. First sentence... not a big deal... they're compression pants... I can get something like that about anywhere. But like many of you who have played goal and other sports for decades now... my body has taken a beating. Most every joint from the waist down has seen some sort of surgical procedure. I've tired to wear non-rigid knee braces over compression pants... but never liked the bulk and abandoned them years ago. That's where the second sentence peaked my interest so I decided to look into them more.

Bracelayer has a number of products available right now... one of which is hockey specific... the KX2 Redline; full length pant w/a cup pouch and velcro tabs for attaching socks. I prefer a 3/4 length, don't wear socks, and wear a standard jock under my compression pants... so need for any of the hockey specific features... and an apparent perfect fit to their KXV. But rather than just buying them I reached out to Baselayer for their recommendation for my application... in particular the difference in neoprene thickness and lengths. 

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Their response was "The KX2 was our original pant and provides a bit more support than the KXV so we decided to make our hockey pant based of it. That being said many people prefer the 1.5mm neoprene because it is less bulky behind the knee so there is a good chance we will have a 3/4 KXV RedLine pant available in the future as well." With that... I placed an order for a pair of KXV and should have them in a couple days.

My expectations for these are pretty tempered. I am anticipating that they provide a noticeable difference in compression over my current 3/4 Under Armor pants... but certainly not expecting the performance of say a purpose knee brace. It's not a major purchase by any means... but could be a nice addition to the bag that gives me if nothing else a good placebo effect. More to come as I get a chance to try them on the ice...

Bracelayer Knee Stabilizing Compression Pants

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So it's been slightly longer than 30 days... but I do have a good number of skates in with the Bracelayer pants now. So far...

  1. Compression: They work as advertised. Significantly more compression than standard compression pants. Just putting them on is more of a process (to the point where Bracelayer includes instructions.) By no means would I consider them a replacement for an actual knee stabilizing brace... but they do provide much more compression.
  2. Heat Retention: The neoprene not only provides more compression, but also aims at keeping the area it covers warmer. It too is noticeable (most noticeably for me when I was getting dressed in a cold locker room,) but not to the point where it creates an issue. 
  3. Moisture Wicking: Despite being warmer, the wicking properties of the pants have kept up with any increase in perspiration I may have experienced over my standard Under Armor pants. The grip texture on the cuffs and waistband do a great job of keeping the pants in place.
  4. Sizing: I'm a 32" waist... and I defaulted to the lower end of their sizing and purchased a Small (30-32.) When they first arrived I thought to myself "How the hell are these gonna fit me?" They looked really small... but they fit quite well. 
  5. Things to Keep and Eye On:
    1. Bunching behind the knee: My KXV pair has 1.5mm neoprene, and while it isn't significantly noticeable during play, there is bunching behind the knee. I'd be interested to hear from anyone if the bunching with 2mm pairs is more pronounced.
    2. Product Care: Like any specialty item it has to be cared for the right way. Bracelayer doesn't advise washing them after each use (something I typically do with all of my under garments after a skate) pointing to the anti-bacterial properties being able to keep them fresh and safe between washing. I've gone to an every other skate washing in cold water and line drying. I'll be watching for degradation of the materials and the seems.
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If my ass and thighs got even 2mm bigger I don’t think I could fit in my goal pants ...

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Looking forward to hearing about these.  I use UA compression shorts with the thicker X elastic, so wondering if this might be a good upgrade once they wear out.

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Would you say the neoprene has a nice stretch to it? These look super interesting but I wear my knee pads under my compression pants

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These were exactly what I wanted, so I ordered up a set of the KX2 Hockey pants. I used to wear knee sleeves over my regular base layer.

I've had two games in these now and wow they are awesome! Love the amount of compression these provide and the little bit of extra padding they provide when going down.

Not sure if its a placebo effect or what but I don't feel the fatigue as much during the game and after the game not nearly as sore. 

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On 2/23/2019 at 2:33 PM, Aquilzz said:

Would you say the neoprene has a nice stretch to it? These look super interesting but I wear my knee pads under my compression pants

I should be receiving them tomorrow 02/26... just in time for my non-league skate. Taking a while as they shipped to me from Vancouver.

15 minutes ago, Tarnowski said:

These were exactly what I wanted, so I ordered up a set of the KX2 Hockey pants. I used to wear knee sleeves over my regular base layer.

I've had two games in these now and wow they are awesome! Love the amount of compression these provide and the little bit of extra padding they provide when going down.

Not sure if its a placebo effect or what but I don't feel the fatigue as much during the game and after the game not nearly as sore. 

That's great news! Placebo effect or not... sounds like they are a good pick up. Honestly... I'm hoping the fatigue piece is true. My team won last night... but the majority of the game was spent in our end... and I was already spent by the end of the 2nd.

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6 hours ago, Tarnowski said:

These were exactly what I wanted, so I ordered up a set of the KX2 Hockey pants. I used to wear knee sleeves over my regular base layer.

I've had two games in these now and wow they are awesome! Love the amount of compression these provide and the little bit of extra padding they provide when going down.

Not sure if its a placebo effect or what but I don't feel the fatigue as much during the game and after the game not nearly as sore. 

Do you get a lot of bunching up behind the knee?  That's always been my issue with any kind of soft brace or compression sleeves for my knees.  I'm really supposed to be wearing a rigid brace on my left knee but can never get one to work, not even in Warrior pads.  These are interesting though...might have to give them a try.

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2 hours ago, jayluv54 said:

Do you get a lot of bunching up behind the knee?  That's always been my issue with any kind of soft brace or compression sleeves for my knees.  I'm really supposed to be wearing a rigid brace on my left knee but can never get one to work, not even in Warrior pads.  These are interesting though...might have to give them a try.

I just received my KXV set today w/ the 1.5mm neoprene. They are definitely a compression fit based on my quick trying them on. I’ve had the same issue as you with the bunching on purpose knee braces. I’ll get them on the ice tomorrow night and can give initial impressions. 

@Tarnowski can you speak to your experience so far with the slightly thicker 2mm neoprene on the KX2?

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jayluv54BadAngle41

I took a look after my last game to see how they bunched/moved after some time on the ice. There was a bit of bunching around the knee but I didn't notice it during the game, I wear my knee pads without a strap directly over the back of my knee so there isn't any pressure there so that's probably why I didn't notice the bunching.

Edited by Tarnowski

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I didn't look at their website so excuse my laziness in just asking for confirmation, but, do they have a pant that is similar to the full length KX2 but without the cup pocket and sock tabs?

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12 hours ago, SaveByRichter35 said:

I didn't look at their website so excuse my laziness in just asking for confirmation, but, do they have a pant that is similar to the full length KX2 but without the cup pocket and sock tabs?

Yes... it's called the KX2. The Hockey specific one is the KX2 Redline. 

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On 2/19/2019 at 3:03 PM, Mroy31 said:

Looking forward to hearing about these.  I use UA compression shorts with the thicker X elastic, so wondering if this might be a good upgrade once they wear out.

I wear those too, and was hoping this might have something similar since I wear those to help with groin stress, but these don't have the same core/groin support for adductors.  The neoprene would help with hip abductors but not adductors.

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4 hours ago, jeff da goalie said:

I wear those too, and was hoping this might have something similar since I wear those to help with groin stress, but these don't have the same core/groin support for adductors.  The neoprene would help with hip abductors but not adductors.

To be fair, I have issues with my hips and not really my groins. The UA was just "something" with support/structure, so I might actually get some benefit from these...assuming I haven't torn my labrum recently...

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@BadAngle41  how are the pants working for you? 

I was looking at redoing my base layer, which currently consists of Coreshorts, a pair of cheapo ace knee sleeves and then knit hockey socks.

I am thinking core shorts, then compression pants, then a knee sleeve over top.  Think these would hold up well for this application?

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