A knee injury can cause so much more pain than you can even imagine. The pain may be so excruciating, you’d find it extremely difficult to either stand upright or walk without support.
At times, these pains are caused by a disease, a tear, or a dislocation. Irrespective of the cause, you can find relief from these knee pains and gain stability by using a knee brace.
Knee braces are useful and versatile that doctors and physicians prescribe it for their patients depending on their medical needs. There are a ton of knee braces out there, making it difficult to find the best choice.
Therefore, in this article, we’ll be reviewing the nine best knee braces available and discuss everything you need to know about them.
Although we have nine knee braces on your list, these three stands out among the rest:
Best Knee Braces for Stability
1. Best Choice: Shock Doctor Hinged Knee Brace
You can feel confident irrespective of past injuries with the Shock Doctor Hinged Knee Brace. It promises high-quality and durability with its patella support finishing, lycra binding, and premium stitching assembly.
It also features X-fit straps to aid comfort and security, plus N-Tex for therapeutic warmth and moisture-wicking. The presence of integrated antimicrobial technology reduces odor, ensuring that your leg remains cool and ventilated.
2. Top Performance: McDavid Knee Brace
A major feature of McDavid Knee Brace is its elastic cross straps that enhance compression. For ease in flexibility and comfort, it has an added collateral and lateral ligament support.
This knee brace also features a padded open buttress, which provides extra support to the patella. McDavid Knee Brace is excellent for thermal compression with its latex-free neoprene material.
3. Can’t Count It Out: Vive Hinged Knee Brace
Vive Hinged Knee Brace ranks in the top three amongst our list of knee braces because of its unique design and flexible features. This knee brace is fitted with aluminum support hinges situated on both sides for additional support.
The neoprene material, which is latex-free, makes for thermal compression. It also has an adjustable strap that ensures you get a perfect fit.
OTHER KNEE BRACES WE REVIEWED
4. Neo-G Knee Brace
Neo-G Knee Brace features a non-slip design that provides the support and comfort you need. Regulatory bodies such as the Health Canada, FDA (US), the MHRA (UK) have it registered as a class one medical device.
This knee brace also features a two-point geared side hinge system that helps keep your knee stable. This feature controls extension movements. Plus, it also features a fully adjustable compression that promotes ease in blood flow.
4. TechWare Pro Knee Brace Support
TechWare Pro knee brace support will provide you with so much confidence because of its alternating strong closures and bidirectional support. It also features an open patella design that provides further support for sufferers of tendon and ligament injuries, reassuring your knee to heal faster.
Knee cap protection is guaranteed by each of the 4 Flexible Spring Stabilizers located on each side of the knee region. For any kind of physical activity you will like to get involved in, it has a breathable moisture-wicking, no-slip silicone strap that ensure compression is uniform.
5. Bodyprox Knee Brace
You can use the Bodyprox knee brace without bothering about checking your size or anyone else’s. That’s how flexible and adjustable it is.
This knee brace has springs incorporated in two sides with a silicon pad in the knee cap position. It has a Velcro design strap that easily wraps around any exterior part of the knee. Additionally, it comes with patella gel pads to further aid movement.
6. Bracoo KS10 Knee Support
Bracoo KS10 Knee Support reduces the stress on your knee joint and relieves pain, strains, fatigue, and sprains. It features an open patella design for assistance in flexibility and maximum comfort.
The reinforced stabilizer ring keeps the kneecap in the exact position. It also has a thick neoprene sleeve, which keeps you protected while improving blood circulation. The open patella design significantly reduces the pressure on the knee joint and reduces stress as well.
7. EzyFit Knee Brace
EzyFit Knee Brace will keep you comfortable under any circumstance. It has a reinforced double stitching and strong closures which aids natural movement and provides you with maximum support.
It is uniquely fitted with a knee stabilizer and top and bottom knee brace silicon strips, ensuring that it stays firmly in place and does not leave you hanging. The quadruple side stabilizers on either side of the knee are sure to give you maximum lateral support.
8. Exous EX-701 Knee Brace
Buyer’s Guide for Knee Braces
If you don’t know much about knee braces, don’t lose a sweat. In this section, we’ll be discussing the basic things you need to know about knee braces.
What Are Knee Braces?
Knee braces are supports that are worn between the thigh and leg to protect the knee, especially when someone experiences knee pain. It’s common for players and athletes to use them to prevent injuries.
But beyond protection, it gives stability to the knee for people suffering from a form of knee-related ailment. Braces are made with an array of materials, including metals, plastic, foam, and straps.
They’ve been around for decades and are gaining wide acceptance. They come in varying styles, sizes, and colors, each suited for a particular purpose. But whatever purpose you choose to use it for, a proper check with your doctor will be quite helpful.
How Does Knee Braces Work?
The general principle behind knee braces is that they offer some level of protection for the knee. How they work depends largely on the type.
Some knee braces give support to your knee’s ligaments by controlling some movements around the knee, which could cause injury during contact sports.
While some knee braces are designed to unload the pain on specific parts of the knee. For instance, compression knee braces exert enough pressure that will keep the knee warm. This type is necessary for combating general knee pain.
The braces for post-surgery also have their peculiarities. The working principles are just endless and can be better understood when we discuss the different types of knee braces.
Types of Knee Braces
Based on their functions, there are different types of braces:
#1. Functional Knee Braces
Functional knee braces are worn by athletes that have suffered from a major knee injury in the past. It gives support to the healed knee, providing stability and motion control. Its function is to prevent a recurrence of another injury.
#2. Rehabilitative Knee Braces
Rehabilitative knee braces are prescribed to a patient who just had a knee injury or underwent knee surgery. The patient has to wear the brace for some weeks to keep the knee stable while the healing takes place. It offers a limited movement during this period to promote recovery.
#3. Unloader Knee Braces
This is a special kind of knee brace as it’s meant for people suffering from any form of arthritis of the knee, including osteoarthritis. They can relieve pains from the knee, but won’t be able to eradicate it until the disease is cured.
They got the name “unloader” because they “unload” or transfer the weight from a damaged part of your knee to another part that can bear the weight.
#4. Prophylactic Knee Braces
If you play contact sports such as American football, then you may find these braces very relevant. This kind of knee braces is quite common among athletes, and everyone believes the braces protect the knees from injuries. Studies are still ongoing to confirm if they truly work or not.
#5. Knee Sleeves
We may not exactly call these braces. However, they provide as much support as knee braces. Moreover, they are more common than most braces as long as knee support is concerned.
They offer compression around the knee, which can be quite relevant in controlling pain and inflammation.
Medical Conditions That Require Knee Braces
These are medical conditions that affect the knees that may require you so seek for knee braces:
Osteoarthritis is a medical condition that involves the entire knee joint. It’s a common type of arthritis that affects older people and is commonly known as wear-and-tear arthritis.
It often affects one knee more than the other, causing misalignment between the two knees. Sufferers of this knee disease often appear to have a bowleg or knocked-knee. It starts out as a minute case and worsens with time.
A knee brace doesn’t cure the disease, rather it takes off pressure from the affected knee and helps relieve the ensuing pain. A knee brace will also help you regain a certain level of stability while you treat the disease. Remember that using knee braces is not a cure, but a means to alleviate pains.
2. Meniscus Tear
A meniscus is a cartilage in the knee that stabilizes the joint. Its primary duty is to protect the bones in the knee joint from wear and tear. What it takes to rupture the cartilage is to twist the knee, causing a condition known as a Meniscus Tear.
A meniscus tear is a common type of cartilage injury of the knee. You can experience it in contact sports such as American football or non-contact sports such as soccer. It leads to excruciating pain that requires medical attention and knee braces to correct.
3. Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL)
Normally, ligaments connect bones together. The Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) is one of the two ligaments in the knee that crosses the center of your knee. It connects your thigh bone and shinbone together, giving stability to your joint.
The ACL injury means a sprain or tear of the ligament. It’s common in sports where sudden stops and change in direction is involved, such as American football, soccer, and basketball.
The knee may swell out of proportion. It’s a pretty painful injury no one wants to experience. Knee braces are important in preventing as well as controlling an ACL injury.
Benefits of Knee Braces for Stability
The benefits of knee braces for stability lies in the peculiarities of the type of knee braces involved. Some braces are still experimental to ascertain their relevance. But on a broad scale, these are the benefits of using knee braces
#1 Correction of Alignment
One of the results of osteoarthritis is a misalignment of the knees. Knee braces provide alignment by reducing the pressure on the affected knee. They can also reduce the pain and swelling in the affected area by limiting the movements.
#2. Prevents Injury
Athletes who have suffered one form of injury or the other can also use braces to prevent a recurrence of another injury. This can be used during the healing process or after the healing is done.
The braces will keep the affected knee in a stable position, preventing it from moving sideways. This stability will prevent the rupture of cartilage or unnecessary movement that would cause the ligaments to tear.
#3. Reduction of Load On Muscles
Knee braces are renowned for taking the load off affected muscles in order to ensure smooth movement of the knee. It is also relevant in treating fractures by stabilizing the knee for the healing to take place.
#4. Provision of Mild Compression
Knee braces can offer some level of comfort by compressing the tissues that surround the knee. This further helps to ensure proper blood circulation and ensures that injured ligaments, tendons, and cartilages gain the requisite support they deserve.
Things to Consider When Buying Knee Braces
There are certain factors that determine which knee brace you need for stability.
#1 Injury or Surgery
Patients that go through one form of knee surgery or the other shouldn’t just buy any knee brace that comes to the mind. If you’ve been diagnosed with an injury, the same applies. You’d have to get a doctor’s prescription of the right kind of braces to buy.
#2 Exercise Routine
The type of exercise you’re into has a direct impact on the type of braces you should buy. If you’re doing much cardio, then you need a brace that is breathable and lightweight. It will give you more results than heavier and bigger ones.
If, on the other hand, your exercise routine involves much leg power such as squatting and hiking, then you need a sturdy knee brace.
The common materials for knee braces are either neoprene or fabric. Although fabric braces are lighter and quite breathable, they are not as durable as their neoprene counterparts. Moreover, they offer less compression.
Neoprene is a synthetic rubber that is widely used to make knee braces because of its awesome thermal compression and high durability. Neoprene knee braces are excellent if you have an inflamed knee. But you’ve got to know that they are not as breathable as fabrics.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, knee braces are flexible enough for long-distance running. You can run or walk as far as you want with your knee braces on. But then, it depends on the material it’s made of. Fabrics are breathable and are suitable for long-distance walks. Neoprene, on the other hand, causes irritation when used over a long time.
Yes, feeling warm around your knee each time you wear a knee brace is normal. Some knee braces offer mild compression and warmth to heal knee injuries.
Yes, knee braces stop the knee from bending sideways and also prevents it from bending backward too.
Some braces are universal, meaning the brace can fit both legs. In some cases, the right brace is different from the left. You have to confirm this before you buy a knee brace.
The knee is a very important part of the body as it controls the body’s mobility to a large extent. Irrespective of your medical needs, knee braces will give you the stability you deserve. Take a swipe through all the reviewed products, and you’d certainly get the best for your condition.