Soccer is a high-intensity sport that requires a lot of running, jumping, and frequent, rapid changes in direction. With all of this movement, it’s no surprise that soccer players are at a high risk for knee injuries. In fact, knee injuries are one of the most common injuries in soccer players. That’s why it’s important for soccer players to protect their knees with a high-quality knee brace.
However, with so many options available on the market, it can be overwhelming to find the best knee brace to use for soccer. In this article, we’ll break down the top options and help you find the perfect knee brace for you and your individual needs.
Benefits of a Knee Brace for Soccer
Using a knee brace while playing soccer offers several benefits to athletes. Firstly, it provides added stability and support to the knee joint, reducing the risk of injuries that are particularly common in sports with sudden changes in direction and high-impact movements. A knee brace can also help players recover from existing knee injuries, providing compression to reduce swelling and alleviate knee pain.
Moreover, a knee brace can boost an athlete’s confidence on the field, allowing them to perform better without fear of re-injury. It can be particularly helpful in post-injury rehabilitation, helping players gradually return to regular activity. Additionally, the warmth generated by a brace can improve blood flow and enhance muscle function. Overall, wearing a knee brace is an excellent preventive and rehabilitative measure that enables soccer players to enjoy their sport more safely and with greater peace of mind.
Types of Knee Braces
Before we dive into the best knee braces for soccer, it’s important to understand the different types of knee braces available. The four main types that you will come across are as follows.
Unloader Knee Braces
An unloader knee brace is among the most supportive types of knee braces that you can acquire. This brace is the best option for those who have recently suffered an injury while playing, are recovering from knee surgery, or are particularly prone to knee injuries.
An unloader knee brace supports the knee and absorbs some of the pressure and weight that is applied to the knee, which allows for better performance and a faster recovery. Even still, the knee brace does not hinder movement or flexibility while worn.
Hinged Knee Braces
Hinged knee braces are one of the more supportive types of knee braces. They have metal or plastic hinges on the sides that provide stability and prevent the knee from moving in unnatural directions. These knee braces are one of the options better suited for players who have already suffered a knee injury or have overall weaker knees.
Compression Knee Sleeves
Compression knee sleeves are the least supportive on this list and are primarily suitable for those who are looking to add a layer of protection for preventative purposes. They are made of a stretchy material that provides compression and minimal support to the knee. This type of knee brace is often the most affordable and easily purchaseable, making it a first step for many with injuries or weaker knees.
Knee straps are small bands that wrap around the knee and provide targeted support to the patellar tendon. They are best for players who have patellar tendonitis or other knee conditions that cause pain in the regions around the front of the knee.
What Are the Best Knee Braces for Soccer?
Now that you have a better understanding of the different types of knee braces available, let’s take a look at the best knee braces for soccer players.
I. The Ascender Knee Brace
The Ascender is an unloader knee brace that provides the user with maximum comfort, flexibility, and support for its class. It is form-fitting and lightweight to prevent sliding on the field and can unload up to 40lbs from the affected knee.
This knee brace features Icarus Medical’s patented External Muscle Tendon System and is proven to significantly reduce knee pain, according to patient studies. The knee brace is also covered by most insurance, making it an attainable option for most.
II. The McDavid 429x Knee Brace
The 429X knee brace is a hinged knee brace that provides solid support and stability. It has adjustable straps and a padded buttress to keep the knee in place and prevent it from moving or sliding too much. This brace can be suitable for players who have suffered a previous knee injury or have weaker knees.
III. SD 875 Ultra Knee Brace
This DonJoy knee brace is a hinged knee brace with a unique design that aims to mimic the natural movement of the knee. It has adjustable straps and a compression sleeve for a comfortable and secure fit. This brace could be suitable for players who want a medium level of support without sacrificing any mobility.
Finding the Right Knee Brace for Soccer
When it comes to choosing the best knee brace for soccer, it’s important to consider your specific needs and the type of support you require. Whether you need maximum stability or just a little extra compression, there is a knee brace out there for you.
By investing in a high-quality knee brace, you can protect your knees and play on the field with confidence. We recommend the Ascender knee brace as it is the most well-rounded solution for soccer players and other athletes. If you would like to learn more about the Ascender and the acquisition process, please contact a representative of our team.