How to Pick Out an Ankle Support
Ankle supports are useful for more than just an ankle sprain and can actually help to treat a number of injuries or conditions. An ankle support can help basically any ankle injury or instability, ankle sprains with most being inversion sprains (when the ankle turns in), knee issues, plantar fasciitis, and in some cases high ankle sprains requiring mostly just motion reduction.
Ankle supports typically come in a few options: slip-on elastic, lace-up, or inserts. The elastic sleeve style easily slips over the ankle, is lightweight and low-profile. Supports featuring a lace design are great for post-injury and provide excellent compression as well as outside and inside support. Inserts help limit motions in the foot that can lead to ankle injuries.
The benefits of ankle supports include:
-Ambulation (aka walking)
-Proprioception retention (this is the sensory perception of the area)
-Abnormal motion limitation while allowing appropriate/necessary motions
-Possible help with knee hyper-extension
No matter what type of support someone picks to meet their specific needs, measurement might be the most crucial step of the entire process.
Ankle support users want to ensure a snug measurement as devices are sized at a compressed fit. Measuring loose versus skin tight can result in incorrect measurement and an improper, ineffective support. When measuring for an ankle support, be sure to accurately measure the ankle’s circumference, the calf muscle at its thickest point, and the length between from the ankle to the knee.
After choosing the best device for a specific ankle injury and measuring the ankle’s area it’s now time to get the right fit.
Fit the ankle support from behind the ankle to the front of the foot or slip the foot and ankle through the brace (depending on the support chosen). The best fit is determined from a seated position with the foot flat on the floor. Adjust laces first before adding any plastic inserts (as necessary). Apply laces from the bottom of the brace (near the toe) to the top of the brace (close to the calf).
After checking the fit while seated test it while walking. Ensure the brace is fitted with the appropriate strap tightness and that any plastic inserts are lined up correctly. The ankle support should not dig into or irritate any areas such as the Achilles tendon, the foot’s bottom or the top of the foot.
Ready to make a decision? Check out all of the Core Products ankle supports and braces here: https://www.coreproducts.com/educational-clinical-information/ankle-foot.html