Innovation occurs when someone looks at a need and develops a solution that didn’t previously exist, or a solution that builds from an existing product but improves it or changes it to be useful in different circumstances.
In 2014, Supacore developed a pair of compression shorts that combined the effects of a commonly used piece of equipment (a sacroiliac joint belt) that was traditionally used to help people who were experiencing pain from a hip, pelvic, groin, or lower back injury or condition. Whilst effective, this device had its drawbacks. It was difficult to wear whilst sleeping, whilst exercising, was completely unable to be worn on an elite sporting field, and it was bulky and overly visible.
With the experience of a physiotherapist who specialised in pelvic and groin conditions in athletes, Supacore developed and patented CORETECH®, a compression product that combined the support of a sacroiliac joint belt into a pair of athletic shorts and tights – thus overcoming the drawbacks previously mentioned. Through testing with athletes and clinic patients, it was clear that the technology worked to decrease pain and recovery time, and enabled athletes to return to training and competition with a much lower risk of re-injury. This was especially important when it came to chronic conditions such as Osteitis Pubis.
In 2016, Sawle, Freeman & Marsden published their paper on the use of a Dynamic Elastomeric Fabric Orthosis (a pair of compression shorts with specific support around the pelvis and groin), and the benefit of this in the support of managing chronic conditions like pelvic instability and Osteitis Pubis.
In the study, the researchers took 8 athletes with varying degrees of pain from chronic conditions such as Osteitis Pubis, or Sacro-iliac joint or groin injury. The amount of time they’d been suffering was between 3 months – 20 years. Sports included:
- Power walking
- Aerobic/Power training
To test their hypothesis, they put the athletes through orthopedic testing that are commonly used to diagnose their conditions – that is, tests that increase pain when performed. These tests included:
- Resisted Adduction (pain measure and strength measure)
- Single Leg Raise Test (pain measure)
- Pain at rest whilst wearing the shorts
- Jump test (pain pre and post)
The researchers found that the majority of athletes in the study were able to apply more force to the resisted adduction with less pain, had less pain on the single leg raise test on their affected side, had less pain at rest, and less pain pre and post jump test.
Their conclusions were that compression shorts that provide support around the waist (such as that found in Supacore CORETECH®) may result in subjective and objective improvements in pain and function in athletes with long-standing pelvic/groin pain.
References:Sawle, L, Freeman, J & Marsden, J 2016, "The Use of a Dynamic Elastomeric Fabric Orthosis in Supporting the Management of Athletic Pelvic and Groin Injury", Journal of Sport Rehabilitation, vol. 25, no. 2, pp. 101-110.