Your knee is the largest and most powerful joint in the human body, yet it can be easily damaged by overuse or injury.
If you enjoy regular exercise, a good knee brace for running can offer a great deal of protection from a variety of knee injuries. A knee brace fits snugly around your knee to help stabilize and support it during physical activity.
There are many types of knee braces available on the market, so let's take a look at some of the most recommended braces to keep you fit and healthy on the running track.
Everything You Need to Know About Good Knee Braces for Running
Should you Run with a Knee Brace?
Unfortunately, the answer to this question isn't as easy as a simple yes or no.
It would also be misleading of us to make claims that a knee support will solve all your running ailments.
Like all excellent answers, there are a few factors to consider when it comes to running with a knee brace.
If you are feeling pain while running, we (at the Best Knee Braces) always recommend stopping and taking stock of the situation and pain. Or to put it another way, mentally note the type (sharp or dull) and the exact location of the pain (around the kneecap, behind the knee or on the sides).
Taking the time to analyze your pain will help to find the right knee support you will need to prevent it from reoccurring.
If you are experiencing knee pain while running, then it is likely you will need some type of knee support. However, that leads us to the next question - what type of brace (or sleeve) should you be using?
Do Knee Braces Really Offer Runners Knee Support?
Yes - knee braces will offer support while you are running.
The purpose of a knee brace is to apply a pressure to the different parts of a knee. This compression helps to stabilize and support the knee from the pressure that running places on the knee joint.
Knee braces also come with the added benefit of keeping the knee warm while running, which helps to keep the ligaments and tendons flexible and supple. The warmth and compression of the knee brace also increases blood flow to the knee, which helps to reduce inflammation and decrease the recovery periods after you exercise.
What to Look for in a Good Knee Brace for Running
There are a few things to look for when it comes to choosing a good knee brace for running. Below is a guide of the features you should consider before you commit to your next knee brace.
The material that a knee brace is made out of is one of the first features you should research and consider when it comes to purchasing a knee brace.
The type of materials for knee braces can range quite a lot, from neoprene, elastic, soft plastics and polyester cottons. You can even have blends of different materials. Correspondingly, with the variety of materials comes the different ranges in associated properties of each knee brace.
We recommend looking for knee braces with wicking properties (moisture absorbing abilities) to ensure that the knee brace can wick the sweat away from your knee while running.
Comfort and Fit
Now this one may sound obvious, however we think it is worth touching on briefly for completeness. After all, the last thing you want to do is trade knee pain for discomfort while you run.
We find the one of the main pain points for knee brace users is the sizing aspect of knee braces. Fortunately we have put together a knee brace sizing guide you can check out to help you with your knee brace.
Another way to help you select the right knee brace size is to read the reviews for each knee brace. More often than not, other users who have purchased the knee brace will let you know if the manufacturers sizing is standard (or not), and whether to buy bigger or smaller sizing. There is nothing better than honest customer reviews to help you make the right decision.
Generally speaking, there are two types of knee braces.
You have your general knee braces, that provide all round support for general activities.
Then you have your targeted knee braces, that have unique designs to provide targeted support to specific areas of the knee.
If you have a pre-existing knee injury, you will want to consider the knee braces that have targeted support. We recommend consulting with a medical professional to determine which brace is best suited to your requirements.
If however, you are after general knee support and pain reduction, the general style knee braces are your go to model.
Best Knee Braces for Running
Now you know what you are looking for when it comes to good knee braces for running, the next natural question is which one is the best for you?
Fortunately, we have an entire article (that we update on a regular basis) dedicated to the best knee braces for running. We recommend checking it out for the most current and up-to-date reviews.
A knee brace is one of the best investments you can make when it comes to running and ensuring your knee stays healthy well into your golden years.
Choosing a good knee brace for running may seem easy at first, however there are a few decisions to be made if you want to get the right one for you. Features such as comfort and size, materials and whether you need targeted support vs general support.
We hope this article has been able to make decision a bit easier for your next knee brace.