Arm bands on football players

I just watched PSU beat Ohio State and I noticed that the players had thing (plastic-looking) bands on their arms. The PSU players that I noticed that had them, had them up around the bicep. The OS players were wearing them down around the elbows.

What purpose do they serve?

My guess is that they serve the same purpose as headbands; they keep sweat from rolling down the arm. Or, the players just think they look cool, so everyone wants to wear one.

While it is difficult to tell from viewing, these don’t appear to be absorbent. Perhaps the players think that they look cool though.

In Australia, members of a sporting team traditionally wear black armbands if a team-mate has recently lost a loved one.

It’s a mark of solidarity.

Bicep bands. They serve no useful purpose, other than to enrich the marketers.

Are you asking about the armbands that even the coaches had on? The ones that looked like they had something green on them? Group I was watching the game with was wondering that too.

Turns out it is a charity thing:

Thanks to our Ausie mates for playing, but those aren’t the right things.

The items (I believe) the OP refers to are neither for mourning, nor sweatbands. Both those things are common in US sports, but that’s not what (I think) the OP is talking about.

I too have always wondered what they are. Here’s a more detailed description …

They look as if someone has taken ordinary shiny plastic electrical tape about 1" wide & wrapped it around their bicep, either at the largest bulge, or more commonly, just above the elbow. It often looks like the tape is quite tight with the muscle bulging out on either side of it. We can’t tell from the TV how many layers there may be, but it’s always just one wrap wide, about 1".

Some players wear a an elbow protector made out of neoprene (wet suit material). This is a (usually black) tube which extends a few inches above & below the albow. The OP’s armbands are not that either.

I have also seen charity advertising bands. These are not those either. Only a few players on any team wear the tape-like bands I’m talking about. And when they do wear it, it’s on both arms.

So, any fans of US football know what these are?

Could it be to relieve pressure on the tendons of the elbow? I know people who wear similar deals on their knees to eliviate pain from stuff like Osgood’s Schlater’s disease and stuff.

Those are sometimes worn, but I do not think that is what the OP had in mind.

Check out this:

Then, even more interesting, see this guy’s leg:

I am assuming these elastic-y things are either (as someone suggested) meant to provide support (but football players don’t really have elbow trouble), are some form of pseudo-science (think the breathing strips or the magnetic necklaces seen in baseball), or are just “flair items.”

I don’t know what they’re for, but does the OP want to know about the band on the player’s left arm in this fuzzy picture?

Or this (which may be a variant of the same thing)?

And this one.
I’ve wondered about them too.

EDIT: I guess that is what we’re talking about! hehehe

You know what happens when you assume… :slight_smile:

I’m a former NFL beat writer and I wrote a story on this a couple of years ago, prompted by a thread here asking the same question.

The purpose of the bands is to take pressure off the triceps tendon. Strains and even tears are an injury than can happen when you fall and land on your hands. NFL players use them both as a preventive measure, and to reduce pain after an injury. They’re also used (although less frequently) above the knees.

And just to be clear, we’re not talking about cotton/elastic sweat bands that are just for soaking up sweat. We’re talking about bands made of rubber, like this. Huerta’s pictures are right on the money, too.

FWIW, that one in particular looks exactly like this Nike Dri-Fit Bicep Band.

Thanks for the answers. The bicep band is indeed what I was asking about.

FTR. sometimes they just feel damn good. It makes you feel a little more pumped. Makes you ‘feel’ your arms a little bit better, gives you a sensation of your biceps being a little more pumped, and that is part of the therapeutic effect, too.