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Do Sports Braces Hurt My Performance?

Injuries to the knees and ankles can sideline us for weeks. This is especially unbearable for athletes who want nothing more than to get back on the court, ice, diamond, track etc. When you get hurt but want to continue your active lifestyle, you can benefit from wearing sports braces.

What are sports braces?

Sports braces are a form of custom orthotics that are designed to keep injured joints steady by stabilizing them. When joints become hypermobile from overuse and injury, they need to be fixed in place so that they can heal without the possibility of reinjury. By wearing braces you can continue to participate in your favourite sporting activities without worrying about hurting yourself again or putting undue pressure on the injured area. Sports braces can be weight bearing like those for the knees and ankles to ensure that you’re not putting too much pressure on the injured area. Because braces are durable yet allow for natural movement, you can move as you would before you sustained your injury.

There is so much misinformation out there about the relationship between wearing sports braces and performance that it can be confusing if you’re not a certified athletic trainer or physiotherapist.

Do sports braces hinder performance?

Sports braces are designed to protect your injured joints and ligaments while still allowing for natural movement. For instance, if you wear a hinged ankle brace that is made to give you full range of up and down motion, your performance will not suffer. Custom braces are created to move with your joints instead of against them while protecting your ligaments from twisting and turning in unnatural ways.

The only way sports braces will hurt your performance is if you are wearing one that isn’t customized to your body. The braces you buy at the drugstore are made for everyone but that doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to purchase one. Their generic design follows the one-size-fits-all model which means that the chances of them fitting you are slim to none. They may feel like they fit but in reality they don’t. You need to get fitted for a custom brace otherwise your performance will suffer and your chances of reinjury are very high.

Where do you get sports braces?

Since buying sports braces at the drugstore will hurt your performance it’s always best to visit a registered physiotherapist to have custom ones made.

Please contact Dynamic Physiotherapy for more information on sports braces.


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