One of the biggest issues that basketball players, and everyone that participates in sports, or physical exercise faces, is injury due to overuse. When we do repetitive things we can cause muscle or tendon injuries that can be debilitating.
To prevent ankle injuries while engaging in physical activities like playing basketball you can start to wear an ankle brace.
Many people assume that wearing an ankle brace would restrict their movements. This assumption is completely incorrect. Wearing an ankle brace will allow you to still have full range of motion, but it will give you the support you need to prevent injury.
Our Top Picks
- Best Overall: Med Spec ASO Ankle Stabilizer
- Best Budget: Liomor Ankle Support
- Best Lace-Up: Mcdavid Lace-Up Ankle Brace
- Best Profesional: Zamst A2-DX Strong Ankle Brace
- Best Neoprene: SENTEQ Ankle Brace
7 Best Basketball Ankle Braces Reviews
Our experts looked at a large number of ankle braces to determine which ones were best at preventing injury or relieving pain. The following 7 items were their favorite braces.
The experts did say the following things must be noted:
- Some braces are soft “sock like” sleeves designed to give support to the ankle and help prevent injury.
- Other braces are designed to lace up, and they provide maximum support with plastic or metallic pieces. These braces are beneficial if you have injured your ankle and are waiting for it to heal. They are also very beneficial if you have previously injured your ankle and your ankle joints are weakened from the injury.
1. SS Ankle Brace for Plantar Fasciitis Support
This ankle brace is designed for people who suffer from weak or injured ankles. It helps to alleviate some of the pain you might experience after an ankle injury, it can help reduce the swelling in your ankles, and it can help prevent future ankle injuries.
This brace is not bulky. You will have no problems wearing your favorite shoes while wearing this brace.
The brace is comfortable and comforting. It has an adjustable strap so you will get a customized fit. This adjustable strap will help keep the proper measure of support on your ankle.
You can wear it all day and it will improve your blood circulation while it provides relief from heel spurs, plantar fasciitis, tendonitis, and more.
2. Med Spec ASO Ankle Stabilizer
This ankle brace has stabilizing straps to provide the maximum ankle support. The straps form a figure-eight so they cradle the vulnerable areas of your ankle.
This is a boot style ankle brace. It is a lace up ankle brace. It is designed so that it can be worn on either foot.
It is made from ballistic nylon. The materials it is designed from allow it to be superior in durability and support. The materials are strong and not prone to stretching or becoming distorted from use. It is long lasting and you can toss it into the washing machine to keep it clean and smelling fresh.
The brace has a low profile design so you can wear it with the majority of shoe styles.
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3. SENTEQ Ankle Brace – Torn Tendons in Foot and Ankle
This ankle brace is manufactured from neoprene that has multiple air holes designed into it. That means that you stay cool and comfortable while wearing the brace. It also means that you can wear the brace even when you are engaging in water activities like swimming, wading, or surf fishing.
The moisture wicking neoprene has mesh venting built into it. This means that your ankle sweat is quickly wicked away from your skin so you stay cooler, drier, and there is less chance of bacteria growth in the brace.
This is a pull on brace with no straps or laces to worry with. It provides support for people with bad arches, hammer toes; or for people who worry about weight distribution, or twisting their ankles.
4. Breathable Ankle Brace for Running Basketball
This ankle support brace is fashioned out of lightweight nylon, elastic lycra, and high elastic SBR. It provides maximum support and minimum amounts of stretching or distortion from use. It is a durable and long lasting item.
It is comfortable to wear because the materials are breathable and reduce sweating, and heat discomfort. The support it provides will be consistent, and you will have less swelling and less pain when you remove the brace.
It can be used on either foot. It can be worn on feet that have up to a 12” arch circumference. The adjustable straps allow you to customize the fit of the brace according to your ankle diameter. The straps are crafted out of premium Velcro that holds tightly throughout the day.
5. Zamst A2-DX Strong Support Ankle Brace
This is the perfect ankle brace for people with weak ankles. Weak ankles tend to roll inward or outward when they are put under pressure. This causes painful sprains and injuries.
This brace is designed to support the ankle against both the inversion, or eversion of the ankle. Most braces will support your ankle against either rolling inward injuries or rolling outward injuries, but this brace provides support on both sides of the ankle.
This lightweight brace weighs only 9.6 ounces. It is comfortable to wear and it provides support against ankle sprains with its unique anchor strap and X-strap stabilizers. The anchor strap reduces the possibility of your lower leg bones separating at the point where they join the ankle.
You can play with confidence and have your best game while wearing this supportive device.
6. Mcdavid Lace up Ankle Brace
This brace can help you to prevent ankle sprains. It can also help you recover from injuries like sprains.
It is made from a breathable material created from polyester and vinyl mesh that is lined. It has a ventilated tongue that allows air to reach your foot and ankle so you stay drier and cooler.
It is available in sizes for men and women
- The x-small will fit men who wear a size 6 – 7 shoe, and women who wear a size 7 – 8 shoe
- The small fits men shoe sizes of 8 – 9; and women shoe sizes of 9 – 10
- The medium fits men sizes 9 – 11; and women shoe sizes of 10 – 12
- The Large fits men sizes 11 – 13, and women sizes 12=14
- The extra-large fits men shoe sizes 14+, and women sizes 15+- proactive injury prevention – post-surgical joint protection
7. Mcdavid Ankle Brace – Support for Sprains, Volleyball, Basketball
This ankle brace has a figure 6 strapping pattern that provides the same support that you would expect from athletic tape.
You can easily adjust the brace with the top strap. You do not have to unlace the brace or remove your shoe to make brace adjustments.
It is made from breathable materials and has a ventilate tongue. You have more comfort and less bacteria growth, or odor.
The comfort of the brace is increased by the padding that lines the closures. The device weighs only one pound so your ankle does not feel weighted.
Athletes that participated in a research study wearing this brace experienced three times fewer injuries than the athletes wearing other devices, or no devices.
Read also: Best basketball knee sleeves and braces
Things you should know before buying an ankle brace
Before you buy an ankle brace you need to consider the following things.
What do you want the ankle brace to do for you?
Ankle braces can provide several benefits. There are slight differences in brace designs so if you know what you want the brace to do for you then you can choose one that is specifically designed to provide the benefits you desire.
Braces for the ankle can support weak joints
These braces are made to provide support. You can buy braces that lace up or braces that pull on like socks. The braces that lace up are designed with supports of either plastic or metal so these braces are more rigid than the pull on braces are.
If your ankle joints are weak you want to buy a lace up brace that can provide you the ultimate support.
Braces can help alleviate pain and swelling
Many basketball players injure their ankles and during the injury their ankle rolls inward on the side. After the injury the ankle can be very painful and swelling occurs.
To reduce the pain and swelling after an injury like this you will want a lace up ankle brace that has metallic supports on the outside of the ankle if the ankle rolled inward and brace support on the inside if the ankle rolled outward.
Wearing a brace to prevent an injury
You can wear one of the pull on braces to add support to your ankles. If you wear these devices before you injure your ankle you can prevent the majority of injuries.
Protection from a recurrence of an injury
Once we have injured our ankles we often discover that re-injuring the ankles happens more often. Our ankle joints become weaker and we receive injuries quicker. If you have injured your ankle in the past then consider an ankle brace as part of your basketball attire.
You need to wear a soft brace every time you are going to practice or play
You need to wear a brace with metallic supports if your ankle begins to have pain or swelling after you have been playing.
It is up to you to protect yourself while you are playing. An ankle brace is necessary protection.
How a Brace Can Save Your Ankle?
An ankle brace provides support to your ankle so that you are less likely to succumb to injury. The brace keeps the ankle from being able to roll to one side or the other so you are far less likely to sprain, or “turn” your ankle.
The brace provides added strength so your muscles and tendons have a helping hand and can hold the ankle in the proper position.
The brace provides compression which alleviates undo swelling, and stops your ankle from being re injured after an injury. Expert saya.
Things to Consider While Buying
There are a few buying tips that can help you buy the ankle brace that will provide you with the most support. There are three basic ankle brace styles.
- The Slip On Brace or ankle sleeves
- The slip on brace with straps
- The Lace Up Brace
These brace styles are designed to provide differing types of support.
Slip on Ankle Braces
Slip on ankle braces are best for:
- Providing support to someone who has never had an ankle injury
- Providing support and compression to reduce swelling in the feet and ankles
- They provide relief to people who have plantar fasciitis
- They provide the proper support for anyone with tendonitis
- They provide pain relief from minor ankle injuries
- They provide support and pain reduction for arthritis sufferers
Slip on Braces with Straps
Slip on braces that have straps are best for:
- Providing increased compression
- The straps that form a figure 8 will provide the maximum amount of ankle compression
- The straps that create a figure 6 are best for people who have a tendency to roll their ankles
- The figure 6 straps protect the most from lateral movements
Lace Up Ankle Braces
Lace up ankle braces are best for:
- People who have experienced a previous ankle injury
- People who need the most support possible to prevent sprains and strains caused by overuse
- People who currently have an injury like a sprain that needs to be supported until it heals completely
We do not all have the same size feet. Even if you wear the same size shoe as your friend, the diameter of your ankle could be greater or lesser than the diameter of your friend’s ankle. It is crucial for you to select an ankle brace that is properly sized to fit your shoe size and your ankle diameter.
Many ankle braces come is small, medium, or large sizes. You want to buy the brace size that is closest to the shoe size that you wear.
Note: The thickness of some braces may make you have to wear a larger shoe with them. Try to buy a brace that is thin enough that it will not interfere with the wearing of your normal shoes.
What Foot is the Brace Designed to Fit?
You have a left foot and a right foot. You want to make sure that you buy a brace that is designed to fit the foot you are going to wear it on.
Some braces are bilateral, and the package will tell you if you can wear the brace on either foot.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Ankle Braces Necessary for Basketball?
Ankle braces give additional support to the player. They are not necessary for all players, but they are recommended for anyone that has turned their ankle before, or has weak ankles. The braces should be worn during practice and during games. More people injure their ankles during practice than they do during games so keep this in mind.
How Can I Protect My Ankles When Playing Basketball?
Wear quality basketball shoes that are the proper size and fit. The shoes should be tight enough to stop the majority of heel movement. You can also wear ankle braces for additional support while you are playing. You can even wear ACE bandage wraps to add support, and always wear good fitting socks while you play.
How Tight Should you Wear an Ankle Brace for Basketball?
You want the brace to fit very firmly but you want to make sure the brace does not shut off blood flow. If the brace is painful or causes the foot to go numb then the brace is too tight. The skin above the brace should not swell or discolor while you are wearing the brace.
Our ankles support the weight of our entire body. The ankle is easily injured during physical activity such as walking, running, jumping, and stair climbing. More than 25,000 people sprain their ankles every day.
An ankle brace provides added support to your ankles to help you prevent injury. They also help you recover from recent injuries. They help reduce the amount of swelling you experience, and they help reduce the pain of arthritis in your ankles.
Ankle braces make it possible for you to get back to what you love doing after an injury. Doctors recommend ankle braces after injuries, and many doctors who practice sports medicine recommend ankle braces for anyone playing physical sports, or doing physical exercise.