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What Does a Shooting Sleeve Do?

Posted by Custom Sports Sleeves on 3/15/2012 to Arm Sleeves
UPDATED: May 18, 2015

Watch the NBA pros or the up-and-coming NCAA basketball stars, and you see shooting arm sleeves everywhere. At Custom Sports Sleeves, we get asked this question quite a bit: "What the heck does a shooting sleeve do?"

There is no single answer. There are medical, regulatory, and even ritualistic reasons for wearing shooting sleeves. Read on to learn more.


The Beginning of the Arm Sleeve - What They Do

American Flag Arm Sleeve

Allen Iverson first started wearing his arm sleeve in the 2000-2001 NBA season after elbow surgery. The compression from the arm sleeve kept the muscles in Iverson's elbow and arm warm and flexible, lessening the chance for further injury.

Iverson liked the shooting sleeve so much, he continued to wear it for many seasons to come. There has also been much speculation regarding the regulatory reasons for Iverson's arm sleeve. He has tattoos on his arm that are against league regulations. Many believe another reason for his shooting sleeve was to cover these up during the game.

Whatever the reason for Iverson's shooting sleeve, it sure did attract attention and made a fashion statement. Arm sleeves became prominent in basketball with new stars like Kobe Bryant and Dwyane Wade sporting the new look.


Arm Sleeves Expand Into Many Sports

The arm sleeve soon became basketball battle gear. Padding was added to the shooting sleeve design to provide further protection. Basketball icons at all levels of play started making statements with their arm sleeves. Most famously, former Kentucky University star John Wall started sporting a blue and white double color shooting sleeve. (As a side note, Custom Sports Sleeves is famous for perfecting this arm sleeve). Double color shooting sleeves are now very trendy in NCAA basketball. The trend even spilled over into other sports - baseball has many players that sport the arm sleeve and so does football. The Maryland University football team took design to the extreme with their arm sleeve design concepts. Click here to take a look at the sleek and cool arm sleeve design by Maryland.


Arm Sleeves - Today in Sports

PRO Arm Sleeve

Today shooting sleeves are everywhere. Watch a basketball or baseball game and this will prove the point.

Getting back to the question posed in this article, arm sleeves are used to enhance the level of athletic play. Stars in a multitude of sport these arm sleeves. The advantages of wearing a shooting arm sleeve include injury prevention and elbow/arm protection, sweat wicking abilities, covering of tattoos, and pure confidence boosting.

If you are interested in a basketball shooting sleeve or an arm sleeve for any sport, feel free to check out our products. We offer everything from custom fitted arm sleeves, to highly customized design arm sleeves. Furthermore, almost every single Custom Sports Sleeves' product is cut and sewn in the USA. So, if you like, click here to get shopping! If you have any particular questions or would like more information on what an arm sleeve does, feel free to browse the links below or reach out to CSS - the arm sleeve experts!

For Further Reading See:

Wikipedia Article on Basketball Arm Sleeves
A Publicly Asked Question: What does a shooting sleeve do?

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