Repetitive strain injuries are some of the leading causes of pain and swelling in the hobby. Maybe you’re familiar with them.
Whether you’re just sitting down to your first pattern of the night or finishing off an extended knitting session, you can be met with the fiery and sharp stabs that accompany this sort of injury.
Sometimes you may even find that you progressively lose sensation in your hands over the course of an evening with your crochet hooks.
These are unfortunate realities for so many knitters who are under the guise that it’s just “a part of the hobby”. Nothing could be further from the truth. Any sign of pain or discomfort should be treated as a medical issue as a direct result of participating in the hobby just a little too much.
Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re probably expecting to read that you should put down your knitting needles or crochet hooks and get some much needed rest.
Well, the actual fact is you should consider taking a break. Rest is the key to recovering from any sort of repetitive strain injury and allowing the swollen, sensitive tendons repair will allow you continue knitting for a lifetime.
I know what you’re really thinking though: you want to press on and finish your project no matter the costs. I understand and have been there myself.
When there’s something that just needs to be done, then it’s going to be accomplished no matter what. Rest, recovery, downtime, and everything else takes a back seat to simply crossing the finish line.
It’s completely understandable, but it’s not a wise move for your long term health.
Constantly straining a repetitive strain injury is only going to lead to further issues down the line. This includes progression towards arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, and cubital tunnel syndrome: three of the leading issues for knitters worldwide. A bit of downtime is what your body truly needs.
Those who feel they don’t have any option but to carry on will be looking for a solution though. I’m sure you’ve already explored the anti-inflammatory medication route with your doctor.
These do improve things quite a bit for acute swelling that’s suddenly getting out of control, but doesn’t provide much by the way of an effective control measure to stop it happening in the first place.
This is where compression gloves come into the picture.
What are Compression Gloves?
Compression therapy has long been used by medical authorities worldwide as a preventative measure to help prevent and control known triggers that cause swelling.
Compression gloves are regularly recommended for those with arthritis as a means of providing a barrier that helps reduce skin and blood vessel expansion caused by swelling.
By doing this, compression gloves will be able to enhance circulation to increase the number of waste products being removed from your hands.
They will also help deliver fresh, healing blood to your working muscles.
Some studies also suggest wearing compression gloves will change the body’s inflammatory response in these areas, which is mostly due to the inability for the tissues to expand excessively during acute swelling.
This will accelerate the healing process overall.
Compression gloves aren’t just for those suffering with arthritis either. Just about anyone involved in knitting and crocheting can benefit from the extra support, comfort, and warmth that wearing these gloves brings.
Finger stiffness and puffiness will become a thing of the past when these gloves are worn regularly while knitting and will restore your fingers’ overall range of motion to before the point things started becoming painful.
Many doctors will recommend that you wear compression gloves overnight in the beginning. This is good advice because it will provide you with an uninterrupted period of rapid healing while your body is at rest.
As a general rule of thumb, you should look to wear your gloves for at least two to three times the onset of the original pain. If things started yesterday, then a compression glove would be beneficial for three days.
Similarly, if the pain related to your injury has been going on for a year, then you’ll be in it for the long haul by wearing your gloves nightly for a few years. This might seem significant, but many users report an almost immediate reduction in pain within the first couple of days.
A trip to the local pharmacy will usually yield some form of compression wear, but sometimes these aren’t all that strong or built to last. Pharmacy compression gloves are usually only suitable as an immediate stopgap while a better product is on its way.
These are the absolute best compression gloves in my opinion
Best Compression Gloves For Knitters and Crocheters
1. ComfyBrace Arthritis Gloves
The ComfyBrace is one of Amazon’s most hotly rated pair of compression gloves today.
Available in a fingerless design, the ComfyBrace is one of the more suitable compression gloves for knitters because it will provide all of the medical-grade compression where it’s needed most without covering the tips of your fingers.
You’ll still be able to knit and crochet with ease by keeping the ends of your fingers open and retaining all of your dexterity, but you will also completely benefit from all of what compression therapy has to offer.
ComfyBrace Arthritis gloves are made from a breathable material. This means highly active hands, like yours when you’re knitting, will be able to wick sweat and moisture away from the glove and retain maximum levels of comfort at all times.
The gloves are available in three different sizes to ensure the best possible fit for your hands and is also accompanied by an arthritis relief book of exercises, which is something that will hugely benefit knitters who wish to avoid repetitive strain injuries in the future.
2. Vive Arthritis Gloves
Coming in a close second place to the ComfyBrace are the Vive Arthritis Gloves. The gloves benefit from a legion of users who have left positive reviews while keeping many of the technical aspects that make the ComfyBrace a great choice. Vive’s gloves are fingerless, lightweight, and breathable, which are all necessities for those who are planning to spend a lot of time knitting and crocheting.
What’s more is the Vive Arthritis Gloves have had a recent update to their stitching pattern following customer requests. The current design is said to be far more durable and supportive than its predecessor, which could make it excellent value against its competitors. It is nearly half the price of the ComfyBrace and is ranked within some of the more budget-friendly arthritis gloves on Amazon today. There are similar sizing options that also ensure a great fit.
3. Doctor Arthritis Compression Gloves
Some knitters may prefer a product that has medical backing, which makes the Doctor Arthritis glove an excellent pick. It has been developed in a full-finger design for complete hand coverage, which ensures the highest amount of healing compression available to your sore and tired hands.
It does mean that some of the more nimble movements, while you’re knitting, will be slightly more cumbersome, but it is an excellent pick for those wanting peace of mind in knowing the glove’s technical specifications have been extensively studied by those in the pain management field.
Some knitters may shy away from the full finger design and this is understandable.
However, it is well-worth considering having a full fingered option as overnight wear during the earliest stages of healing and recovery to ensure total coverage of medical-grade compression.
Like the ComfyBrace, Doctor Arthritis gloves also come supplied with a book of pain management and exercise tips to help further reduce issues related to knitting strain.
4. ArthritisHope Dotted Compression Gloves
Knitters seeking the highest amount of grip for their tools and projects will find it hard to go wrong with ArthritisHope’s dotted compression glove design.
The added dots on the surface of the glove help provide extra grip strength, which can sometimes be necessary for longstanding injuries that are becoming stiffer and more swollen.
Dotted glove designs are common in the warehousing and construction world where workers need to have maximum support when handling heavy or awkward objects.
The added grip will certainly be useful if you’re struggling to hold onto your tools because your hands are in too much pain.
5 Copper Compression Full Finger Arthritis Gloves
Another full-finger compression glove worth considering is the Copper Compression glove. It is the current Amazon Choice for copper compression.
The technology is relatively new in the compression world, but it is already proving to be a worthwhile healer.
It is believed that trace amounts of copper from the glove will absorb into your hands during movement and this mineral will help in rebuilding the damaged tendons and cartilage right at the site of the injury.
This makes it a particularly good option to use while knitting since the constant movement of your fingers will help the copper to flow more readily into your warm and active hands.
The Copper Compression glove is backed by excellent customer reviews and is one of the very rare few gloves to also have an XL size for very large or swollen hands.
If small sizes have been an issue in the past, then it’s highly likely that the Copper Compression glove would solve this concern and give you the comfort you’re looking for without the added tightness of an ill-fitting compression glove for knitting.
Compression therapy is well-worth considering if you’ve been struggling with aches and pains for some time now. While nothing will replace a traditional doctor’s visit for proper examination and diagnosis, compression gloves could keep you knitting for longer.