Tag Archives: LCL

Knee Braces: 6 Ways They Can Help Students Prepare for School Sports

Braces for School Sports

More and more we see the popularity of youth sports intensifying; while this is great for parents who want their kids to stay active, it also means paying more attention to sport safety and injury prevention.

As interest in playing sports grows, so does the level of competition and intensity. Many experts have expressed the growing number of youth injuries is due to the higher levels of performance required to be successful in a variety sports. Today’s kids need to be stronger, faster and braver in order to surpass others who have been training their whole lives in a particular sport. Continue reading

Knee Braces For Football

Click Here for Football Brace Pricing

The anterior cruciate ligament is one of the most commonly injured ligaments in the knee.

The function of the ACL is to prevent excessive forward movement of the lower leg in relationship to the thigh, as well as limits rotational movements at the knee joint.

The ACL ligament is one of 4 important ligaments that stabilize the knee and prevent excessive or abnormal range of motion. Football, due to its high impact and high contact movements makes it one of the most common sports with ACL ligament sprains and tears. The question then arises that if there are so many of these types of injuries, why is there not more attention addressing the need for protective bracing.

Over the last decade, there has been more awareness of the need to protect the knee during these types of high contact and high impact sports. Many professional football players have utilized rigid knee braces following ACL surgery to continue their careers. As more studies are done, and the technology improves regarding the materials used in brace construction, it has become apparent that more athletes, both amateur and professional are wearing knee braces for both preventative purposes and after ACL surgery. More coaches and trainers have recommended braces to their players, especially those with previous knee injuries or instabilities.

Most ACL braces for football usually are metal or carbon fiber framed braces. This provides the maximum support level that can be obtained, without restricting movement of the knee joint. Fabric hinged braces are available for ACL protection, but they are limited in support, due to the flexibility of the material.

It must be understood that braces do not prevent injuries. Like airbags in a car, they reduce the severity of the injury. So if an athlete is going to be injured, the idea is to reduce the severity of the injury with additional support, thereby improving the prognosis and recovery period.

There have been arguments regarding the use of braces causing muscle atrophy, bone loss and weakness due to wearing knee braces. Although prolonged use of a brace can have such implications, there is no data to demonstrate that short term use during play or practice causes these types of complications. The risk of injury and surgery usually far outweigh any potential issue of short term muscle atrophy.

There will always be controversy regarding the use of these devices and the true effectiveness in protecting and stabilizing the knee during football. It is strongly advised that you consult with your physician, coach or trainer to determine if you would benefit from a knee brace.

One of the premiere websites that sells Football Knee Braces for ACL injuries and provides a wealth of information on other functional knee braces is The Brace Shop

No one can beat The Brace Shop prices, their service and their huge selection. The Brace Shop supplies hospitals, sports teams, schools, doctors, therapists, nursing homes & military bases around the world. Shop Where The Pros Go!

Product Review – DonJoy Armor Extreme Knee Brace For Skiing

The DonJoy Armor Extreme Knee Brace is the strongest, off-the-shelf functional knee brace on the market and is designed for active people seeking ligament protection, excellent fit, and superb comfort. Over the years the Armor Extreme has been used extensively during skiing for people suffering from a wide range of knee conditions, primarily ACL and meniscus damage. Many patients utilize the Armor Extreme following knee surgery as a form of protection from re-injury, and allows them to continue to function at the high activity level they were at prior to the injury.

The ACL, or anterior cruciate ligament, is a ligament located inside the knee joint. It is one of the most important of four strong ligaments connecting the bones of the knee joint. The other three ligaments being the Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL), Medial Collateral Ligament (MCL) and Lateral Collateral Ligament (LCL).

The function of the ACL is to prevent excessive forward movement of the lower leg bone (the tibia) in relation to the thigh bone (the femur), as well as limits rotational movements of the knee. Anterior cruciate ligament injuries are more frequent in females with between 2 and 8 times more females suffering a rupture than males. Skiers are more prone to ACL injuries due to twisting (torsional) falls, missteps and binding release issues. Improper condition also is a major cause of ACL and other ligament injuries.

The DonJoy Armor Extreme was designed for the most active of individuals. It offers many features that improve comfort and stability, without sacrificing support.

– A unique 4-Points-of-Leverage cuff and strap configuration, exerting a posterior force against the tibia, preventing anterior movement.

– A strong and lightweight 6061-T6 aircraft aluminum frame for medial / lateral control ensures maximum rigidity.

– Swiveling strap tabs on the frame accommodates changing leg and muscle positions.

– Anti-migration Supra Condyle Pad prevents slippage of the brace.

– Short Calf version to accommodate ski boots.

– Standard Polycentric Hinges for more natural knee range of motion.

– Silver-veined powder coat finish for maximum durability for the serious athlete.

– Optional Patella/Shin impact guards and calf pinch guard.

– Moldable, medial swooping frame for custom fit.

The Armor Extreme comes in a standard length and short calf for ski boot clearance. The brace also comes in a Ski version, which has a medial hinge deflector built into the inside hinge of the brace. This unique feature is for patients that wear two frames braces at the same time. The medial deflector prevents the hinges from catching when the knees are together, thereby preventing potential injury.

The Armor Extreme has been available for many years and has proven to be one of the most functional and supportive braces on the market. Donjoy is one of the largest brace manufacturers in the world and there products have been used by thousands of athletes. If someone requires a maximum supportive brace without customization, the Armor Extreme is one of the best choices in this very competitive market. For more information on this brace including sizing CLICK HERE.

It is always recommended to consult with your treating doctor to determine the correct brace for your orthopedic condition.

For more information on our full line of braces go to www.braceshop.com or call us at (866-325-8045).

Product Review – DonJoy Playmaker Knee Brace

The DonJoy Playmaker Knee Brace is one of the most popular and widely used knee braces on the market. The functionality and price are the main highlights of this versatile and supportive brace. DonJoy is an international brace manufacturer that supplies the US Ski Team, US Snowboarding Team, Canadian Freestyle Ski Team, USA Volleyball team, as well as UCLA, Texas Tech, University of Mississippi and University of Maryland. The DonJoy Playmaker is available in so many styles and sizes, that it used in most every sport for a wide range of orthopedic knee conditions.

Of all the braces on the market today, the most versatile brace is without question the DonJoy Playmaker Knee Brace.

The DonJoy Playmaker is suitable for mild to moderate ACL, MCL and LCL knee instabilities. It has been used by thousands of athletes in all types of sports to help stabilize and support their injured knees.

As an intermediate-level product it has proven over time to be both durable and adaptable to most sports activities, with many added features not usually seen in a fabric hinged style brace.

It is available in neoprene fabric for those athletes in cold weather and water sports. Neoprene helps retain heat and is extremely durable in high impact/contact sports. Skiing, Hockey, Snowboarding, Wakeboarding and Kite Surfing are just some of the sports utilizing the Neoprene Playmaker.

The Playmaker is also available in a material referred to as drytex. This unique nylon core and polyester Lycra fabric allows for improved airflow. The lightweight polyester-nylon weave fabric is ideal for patients who have neoprene-based irritations or allergies, or live in warm weather climates.

The Playmaker also is available in a slip-on or wrap-around style. Wrap-around styles usually are indicated when a persons thigh and calf circumference does not fit the norm, which happens in large athletes, obese individuals, or when a pull on is not practical (removing ski boots or hockey skates). The wrap-around style gives the athlete more adjustability by controlling the tension placed around the thigh and leg separately. The slip-on style is easy to apply and tends to apply more even compression around the knee. The choice is purely a comfort factor and does not affect the support of the brace.

A unique feature of the DonJoy Playmaker is the availability of an open cutout in the back of the knee. One of the most common complaints among athletes and patients is the irritation of the material in the back of the knee. By creating an opening in the back of the brace, bunching of the brace is reduced and the back of the knee is able to breathe. Again, the choice is a comfort factor and does not affect the support of the brace. Many athletes (skiers) prefer a closed back, so as to keep the knee warm.

The greatest features of the DonJoy Playmaker is the basic construction of the brace. Polycentric hinges with contoured condyle shells and the famous 4-point dynamic leverage system provide unsurpassed stability and support for a fabric style brace.

Some of the new features that came out in 2008 is a drop lock style hinge for post op patients and patients that need to lock the brace in full extension when ambulating. The new Fource Point Hinge has been incorporated into the Playmaker. Fource Point Technology was developed to further protect the ACL and enhance the Four Points of Leverage brace design.

The patented Fource Point hinges are designed to react during leg extension and offer an increasing resistance in the last 35 degrees of extension, in order to reduce extension shock and increase posterior tibial loads.

The hinge has three adjustment settings to vary the amount of resistance to meet the specification of the physician’s protocols and the patient’s comfort.

Whichever style Playmaker you decide on, you can be assured that you are getting one of the most popular and supportive braces on the market today. For more information on this brace including sizing information CLICK HERE.

It is always recommended to consult with your treating doctor to determine the correct brace for your orthopedic condition. For more information on other braces please visit us at www.braceshop.com or call us at (866) 325-8045.

Why Should I Wear A Knee Brace?

Knee Brace

Types of Knee Braces

There are basically three types of braces: Post-operative, functional and preventative/prophylactic knee braces. Post-op braces are usually prescribed following surgery or an injury when the knee requires complete immobilization.

There are basically three types of braces: Post-operative, functional and preventative/prophylactic knee braces.

Post-op braces are usually prescribed following surgery or an injury when the knee requires complete immobilization. These braces are usually long braces that may extend from the upper thigh to the lower leg. After surgery or a severe knee injury, mild to moderate pain and edema of the knee occurs. Your doctor may prescribe a knee immobilizer which prevents the knee from bending. These devices are used as an alternative to cast immobilization.

The doctor may also prescribe a post-operative brace that has hinges that offer range of motion capabilities. These post-operative braces are innovative, easy-to-use braces that can adjust the range of motion with the click of a button. These braces can immobilize the knee and then allow controlled increases in range-of-motion as the knee heals and the patient begins physical therapy.

There is no controversy with these types of braces, as they have proven effective and efficient as an alternative to cast immobilization.

Functional braces are hinged supports that support and take over the function of damaged knee ligaments in and around the knee. These braces can be fabric style with hinges, or complete metal frames or carbon fiber. These braces are designed to protect the MCL (Medial Collateral Ligaments), LCL (Lateral Collateral Ligament), Meniscus, ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) and PCL (Posterior Cruciate Ligament). You may have noticed some professional football players using these types of braces.

Prophylactic or preventative braces are supports that are used by some athletes that do not have an injury, but prefer to wear a brace to prevent injury, especially in high impact and contact sports like football, rugby, skiing and water sports. This is where we get some controversy.

Many doctors feel it is not only unnecessary to wear a brace to support a normal joint, but may cause harm, as it may affect the biomechanics of the patients gait. Some doctors are also concerned about weakness in the knee joint from prolonged use of knee braces. The more rigid braces will remove stress away from the knee and the surrounding muscles and ligaments and may cause atrophy and loss of bone density.

Many doctors however feel that given the right circumstances, these braces, when used properly, can provide a level of protection for athletes, especially in high impact sports. Some patients with inherited unstable knees can benefit from this type of brace.

It is important that you consult with your physician and therapist before deciding on a knee brace. There are hundreds of manufacturers and thousands of knee braces to choose from, so it can be very confusing. There are braces specific for ACL tears, and ones for patella tracking. If you purchase the wrong brace for your condition, you may not only risk further injury, but may cause other problems.  Feel free to browse www.braceshop.com and Shop By Condition to see which type of brace you should be looking for or feel free to call our technical department at (866)325-8045.