• Ankle Braces – What is best and do they work?

  • Prevention hamstringAnkle sprains are one of the most common injuries in sport and they also have a really high re-injury rate. Today we decided to show you the research around one of the best ways to prevent ankle sprain re-injury and what our recommendations for ankle braces are.

    Just how common are ankle sprains

    • A whopping, quarter of all sporting injuries are ankle sprains
    • There are over 100 000 ankle sprains or strains each year, here in New Zealand
    • There is a twofold increased risk of a second sprain for at least 1-year post-injury(1)

    The best ways to prevent ankle sprains from happening again

    The best ways to prevent ankle sprains from happening and happening again is simple.

    The first is to warm up well.

    The second is to rehab your ankle and follow through with your ankle rehab. This can be as easy as using a balance board each day but at times can be complicated so it is best to be guided by a physio

    Thirdly, using a brace for up to 1-year post ankle sprain during dynamic activity has been shown to reduce injury rate even more than rehab/strengthening! Part of this may be due to the fact that only about a quarter of people follow their rehab properly and only half actually do it at all. (2)

    Combine a warm-up with ankle retraining and a brace and you have the best chance of it not happening again 🙂

    How effective are ankle braces

    As you can see from the infographic below, bracing has been shown to be very effective in reducing the re-injury rate with the re-injury rate coming down to 15%. This study was done using lace-up ankle braces.

    do ankle braces help ankle sprains

    lace up ankle brace nzWhat brace is best

    The most effective is the lace-up ankle braces with figure 8 stabilizing straps. HERE is a link to where you can order one online straight from our suppliers. Alternatively, you can pop into the clinic OR if you are overseas, here is a good option on Amazon

    Conclusion: Rehab your ankle properly and follow your physios advice to the T. Using an ankle brace can definitely help prevent re-injury, particularly if you have injured the ankle previously.