There are a lot of different knee sleeve options on the market and it can be overwhelming at times finding the perfect pair for your needs. Factor in that most sleeves come with a fairly hefty price tag and this decision only gets more complicated. 

Two of the more popular knee sleeve options for strength athletes are the Sling Shot Extreme “X” Knee Sleeves and the SBD Knee Sleeves. Both of these sleeves come with long their own respective lists of pros and cons, and today, we compared the two in hopes that we’d find a definitive winner. If you’ve been keen on either of these knee sleeves, then you’re in luck.

Over the last few months, we took the time to test and compare these knee sleeves in a variety of categories to help you decide if the Sling Shot Extreme “X” or SBD Knee Sleeves would be the better pick for your needs. Check out the video below for more details. 

Related: Check out our best knee sleeves round-up for more options!

Sling Shot Extreme "X"
  • IPF, USAPL, USPA approved
  • 7mm neoprene and durable
  • Great stability
SBD Knee Sleeves
  • IPF, IWF, USPA, USAPL Approved
  • 7mm neoprene
  • Great stability

Price

In respect to price, both knee sleeves are pretty similar. Right off the bat, if you’re on a budget, then I’d recommend looking into more cost efficient sleeves, however, both options will last for a while, so they could be well worth the investment. 

Each pair of knee sleeves comes in pairs. Check out their prices below.

  • SBD Knee Sleeves: $82.50-$85.00
  • Sling Shot Extreme “X” Knee Sleeves: $82.50-$87.00

With price tags both exceeding $80.00, there’s not truly a clear cut winner here. Both knees sleeves are eerily comparable in price.

Winner: Tie

Competition

The next category I compared these knee sleeves in was competition. Basically, which federations are these knee sleeves permitted in. Since most lifters considering these knee sleeves are likely already competing, or trying to compete in the future, then this category has a pretty heavy weight to it. 

SBD Knee SleevesSling Shot Extreme “X” Knee Sleeves
USAPLUSAPL
USPAUSPA
IPFIPF
IWF 

Author’s Note: We only listed the major federations above. If you compete in a smaller federation that follows a larger federation’s rules, then likely the sleeves will be okay for competition. However, it’s always worth checking and confirming beforehand. 

Winner: SBD Knee Sleeves

Comfort 

This section is tough to navigate since every athlete will have their own perception of comfort with knee sleeves. For example, some lifters prefer tighter sleeves, while others care more for sleeves that have a focus on the calve and quad taper. 

Both of these knee sleeves are comfortable and neither felt off putting to wear for longer workouts, however, I do think SBD has a slight edge here. Their neoprene is slightly more accommodating and felt a bit more “natural” to wear during long working sets that had longer rest times in-between. 

Don’t get me wrong, I like the Sling Shot sleeves, too, but the SBD sleeves took my vote for winning the comfort face off.

Winner: SBD Knee Sleeves

Stability

Both knee sleeves are constructed with reinforced stitching, 7mm neoprene, and well-designed reinforced edges. This makes both options great for stability purposes. In respect to knee sleeve thickness, 7mm neoprene is usually the thickest knee sleeves will go.

In heavy training sessions, both sleeves felt eerily comparable with their stability, and supported the knees well. When it comes to stability, I have to give both knee sleeves a win here because they both performed great. 

Winner: Tie

Performance 

Similar to stability, both knee sleeves performed really well. It’s worth noting that I’ve only competed in SBD Knee Sleeves over the last three years and plan to compete in the Sling Shot sleeves later this year, so I cannot speak to their performance in a meet setting…yet

However, I tried to base a few training sessions with a “meet” style flow to get an idea for how the Sling Shot sleeves performed, and to no surprise, they were great. For this reason, I’m going to award both sleeves with the win here. 

Winner: Tie

Wrapping Up

At the end of the day, I don’t think you can really go wrong with the Sling Shot Extreme “X” Knee Sleeves or the SBD Knee Sleeves. If you’re a serious strength athlete, then I think investing in either of these pairs would be a good bet for ensuring solid performance and long-term durability.