In volleyball, ankle sprains are an all-too-common injury. You can protect yourself, however, with the right ankle brace. If you need help finding the best ankle brace for volleyball, you can read the above comparison table for a brief overview, and check out the more thorough reviews of each product below.
Top 5 Best Ankle Braces for Volleyball in 2019
1. Active Ankle T2 Ankle Brace – Best for Low-Top and High-Top Shoes
The Active Ankle T2 Ankle Brace is a rigid brace that offers a high level of protection. With its build, it’s ideal for those frequent jumps and landings that volleyball players undergo as well as for anyone who has had ankle injuries in the past.
The T2 Ankle Brace features a quick-fit design. Its single strap allows you to adjust it with ease to fit with either high-top or low-top shoes.
For comfort, there’s EVA padding that’s custom molded to contour to your ankle. Coupled with a feather-light construction and slim build, there’s minimal bulk. In addition, it also works on either foot, left or right.
2. McDavid Ankle Brace – Best for the Money
McDavid Ankle Brace is intended to reduce injuries in athletes with a study even finding that athletes had 3x less injuries while wearing the brace. For comfort, the brace features a ventilated tongue that may help keep you cool while you play.
In an attempt to stay on better, the strap on this brace features a figure-6 pattern. This resembles that of athletic tape, which may have a greater chance of giving you support without slipping.
Also, the single-layer polyester design shouldn’t weigh you down. Lastly, it’s designed so that you can adjust it without having to remove your shoe.
3. Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace – Best Durability
The Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace is intended to last you season after season thanks to the use of Performathane (thermoplastic elastomer). This soft shell design offers greater durability compared to other plastic material.
It’s true that the Ultra Zoom can provide a custom fit; this is helped by the Performathane that utilizes your body heat to help it mold to your ankle and foot.
However, this means that if you wear a pair of them for both feet, mark which brace is the left and which is the right. Once it molds and you get past the break-in period, it’s ankle-specific.
To aid in the natural movement, the brace has a hinged-cuff design. This design restricts any excessive turning and rotation. By restricting these movements, the brace can help reduce the chance of ankle injuries, both low and high.
4. Zamst Ankle Brace Support Stabilizer: A2-DX – Best Support Stabilizer
The Zamst Ankle Brace Support Stabilizer: A2-DX is one commonly worn by professional athletes. It features a rigid design that may benefit you whether you want more support or are seeking to heal following an injury.
This brace features Exo-Grid (Xternal), which is a dual molded exterior, offers greater support. The brace accomplishes this with the Exo-Grid alongside the anchor strap, X-Strap, which provides three-way anterior lateral and medial support.
5. DonJoy Performance POD Ankle Brace – Best Low Profile
DonJoy Performance POD Ankle Brace features “On Demand” technology that’s meant to engage when needed in order to protect from ankle roll and other common ankle injuries players may fall victim to.
It’s designed to work with those who may have instability or recovering from something like a sprain.
Inside the brace is an EVA lining that’s super soft as to not irritate, but without reducing support. The brace is also built with a low-profile cuff with an underfoot closure to integrate near seamlessly with your shoe. It also has a sleek design that’s simple and lacks much bulk.
Choosing the Best Ankle Brace for Volleyball – Buyer’s Guide
Although many of them advertise themselves as ideal for volleyball players, ankle braces aren’t designed with the same purposes. If you want to find the right one for your needs, look at the following guide that breaks down what to look for in an ankle brace for volleyball.
There are three main types of ankle braces you’ll find:
- Post-recovery: These feature a sturdy rigid design intended to help you heal following an injury. They’re used to help with swelling purposes especially, so they aren’t exactly intended for activity use.
- Lace-up: Semi-rigid in form, these braces are made from nylon or similar material. It provides more flexibility while offering adjustability to suit your comfort level.
- Rigid: Usually seen in a lace-up or stirrup design, a rigid ankle brace provides high-quality protection and support.
Finding an ankle brace that’s both comfortable and supportive may take time, but it may be more beneficial for you in the end. If you aren’t comfortable, you may not be able to move in it as well, which might increase your risk of injury.
Try to find braces with soft padding if comfort is important so it won’t rub against your foot while you wear it.
Quality braces offer freedom of movement. In these cases, you can move around as you would without a brace but also without the risk of improper movement. Braces with a hinged-cuff especially help as it restricts excessive rotation and turning.
Proper sizing may be one of the most important aspects of finding the right ankle brace. Some are made to fit various sizes from extra small to extra large, while others only have a few sizes. The main thing to remember is not to focus on your shoe size when finding an ankle brace as it can cause you to find a brace that may be too big.
Volleyball can be an intense sport on the joints with jumping, hard landing, diving, etc. With the right ankle brace, you can protect yourself from potential harm without restricting your movement. The above reviews and guide should help lead you toward the best ankle brace for your volleyball needs.