I had the opportunity to test a pair of compression shorts from Opedix. They are designed to enhance the kinetic functioning of your body by helping to support the core, and enhance hip and knee joint function. I can’t say that there is evidence based research that wearing any type of compression shorts can actually achieve this or if it has even been examined. The website claims that the shorts are tested to improve core stability, dynamic balance and reduce low back pain, rate of core muscle fatigue, and knee pain.
I will admit I was skeptical. They appear to be nothing more then heavy grade material compression shorts and I was concerned they would be too hot in warmer temperatures. I am used to running in compression shorts under my running shorts but these are a bit heavier. They were actually not that bad. They did not ride up my thighs and were very comfortable during a long run that I wore them on. There are soft rubber coating tabs to the ends of the inside seams of the shorts that prevent them from riding up the thigh. They did a great job of creating the rubber coating such that it is not a continuous rubber coating as seen in some Lululemon shorts which can be irritating. These did not irritate my thighs at all. As an update to this blog post, I have now ran over 100 miles in these shorts and can’t wear them enough!! They wash very well and have not shrunk or stretched out.
Did they enhance my core stability or achieve any of the aforementioned claims? I can’t answer that, but they are definitely comfortable and supportive. They almost have a “pulling” effect on your hips that I would say is comparable to the way one would wrap an ACE bandage around the hip and waist in attempt to assist with internal rotation and flexion of the hip. This is very common amongst physical therapists and athletic trainers when an athlete suffers from a hip flexor strain.
I don’t know that they “supported my core” but there was definitely more compression and support then other compression shorts.
They do come with a hefty price tag of $165. I made the joke to my wife that I think I own a pair of shorts that have surpassed the cost of her Lululemon tights!!! With that said, you do get what you pay for, and as with the Lululemon products, these shorts do have the quality that will last for years and not months. I did discuss the price with OPEDIX and they explained that there are 27 panels that are sewn together as opposed to 6 in most others. I think the problem that would exist with these shorts is you’ll probably like them so much you’ll want a second pair which is not conducive for most people at this price.
Something else noteworthy; there is literature published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise that demonstrates a 21% improvement in core stability. The published articles can be viewed here:
OPEDIX CORE-Tec study in American College of Sports Medicine
The Effects of External Pelvis Support On Core Proprioception and Dynamic Stability.
They do offer pants as well although I have not had tried those yet. I’m sure if they’re anything like the shorts they too will become my favorites this winter!
Opedix CORE-Tec Compression shorts and Pants can be purchased here.