7. Preparing to Use the KAATSU Cycle 2.0 – Checking Your Correct Arm Band Pressure

For who? Tactical athletes, physical therapists, KAATSU Specialists
For what? Recovery

The KAATSU Air Bands should be placed snugly on your upper arms. Snug – but not tight.

When you put on the KAATSU Air Bands on your arms, you should be able to place one finger between your skin and the KAATSU Air Bands. If you can place two or more fingers between your skin and the KAATSU Air Bands, the bands are too loose and you may want to
slightly tighten the KAATSU Air Bands.

However, if you manually tighten the KAATSU Air Bands too much, you will not be able to place a finger between your skin and the KAATSU Air Bands. In this case, slightly loosen up the bands. KAATSU Air Bands are elastic Blood Flow Moderation bands with an inner air bladder; KAATSU Air Bands are neither a tourniquet or blood pressure cuff.

Occlusion training or blood flow restriction (BFR) training use tourniquets and blood pressure cuffs in order to restrict arterial flow (i.e., blood flow from the torso to the limbs). This is NOT what KAATSU Air Bands do, although KAATSU is the original BFR. KAATSU Air Bands were specifically designed and engineered to modify venous flow (i.e., blood flow from the limbs back to the torso). This is a major and very important difference.

In order to confirm that your pressure is safe and optimized and your bands are on adequately tightly enough, you can check your Capillary Refill Time (CRT). On your arms, press your thumb into the base of the palm of your hand. The skin will temporarily blanch (i.e., go white) and then will refill back up with blood and return to normal color.

The duration of time for the blood to refill and the blanched spot to return to color should be between 1-3 seconds. If your skin does not turn back to its normal color within 3 seconds, the bands are on too tightly and should be loosened. If your skin is so engorged with blood that the blanched spot returns to color less than a second, that is OK too.

When the color of your arms turns pink (or becomes rosy red or even a purple color), it means that your capillaries are thoroughly engorged in blood, thereby improving your circulation.