Last week we received a package from 2XU containing both their Compression Calf Guards (for use during a workout) and Compression Calf Sleeves (for post workout recovery) with the goal to compare them to other options on the market. 2XU separates their product lines into “Perform” and “Refresh” categories, which we found intriguing. Typically we see a “one-size-fits-all” approach for this type of gear, so we at AG wanted to see what benefits 2XU’s approach would offer.
Whenever we receive a new product our goal is to start using it as soon as possible, so I wore the 2XU Active Guards on both a 12 mile run Saturday and then again on Sunday for a 51 mile ride. After both workouts I wore the Refresh Guards to aid in recovery. While it’s still very early to be providing final commentary, I did want to provide my initial thoughts.
2XU Compression Calf Guards (Perform)
While I have been wearing compression for years, the sleeves have always felt a little heavy. However, I felt the exact opposite when wearing 2XU’s product. I found them to be extremely light weight and breathable. I didn’t even notice they were there for the most part, yet I still felt that familiar squeeze of compression that I have come to rely on. And since I typically run before the sun comes up, I also appreciated that the guards have a little reflective material on them for a bit of added safety. So far the only real issue I have had with them has been taking them off. The bottoms do not seem to stretch as far as the rest of the sleeve and they are tough to get over the heel/foot when removing them (though strangely putting them on was not a problem).
2XU Compression Calf Sleeves (Refresh)
While the calf guards are barely noticeable, the sleeves feel more like a really long pair of comfortable socks. You still get that unmistakable squeeze of compression but it’s a very relaxed version of it. The sleeves definitely stretch more at the bottom than the guards, and getting them on and off is no issue at all. They are extremely comfortable and my legs did feel better after wearing them for a bit, which is what I would expect from compression.
It was a great first weekend with the 2XU calf lineup, and I am looking forward to continuing the test. I really appreciate the active\refresh concept—if only that I have a second set of sleeves that I can put on immediately after a workout. So there’s no need to quickly throw the original pair in the wash. To provide a final review, I’ll be continuing to wear the 2XUs over the next two to three weeks during/after every workout (including in the pool). Stay tuned for updates.