Playing beach volleyball at sunset.

Best Ankle Brace For Volleyball

Volleyball is an incredibly popular sport worldwide, being played in many countries. 

It’s truly a fantastic way to keep fit, stay in shape, and have fun with your friends at the same time.

I mean, really, a volleyball game on the beach while the hot sun shines down is tough to beat!

Nevertheless, as with any sport, there are risks involved. Volleyball can be tough on the ankles in particular. 

So, to help minimize the risk and provide ankle protection, some volleyball players choose to wear an ankle brace while playing. 

Best Ankle Braces

In this comprehensive guide on the best ankle braces for volleyball, we’ll look into what ankle braces are, along with some of their common features. 

Plus, tips on how to choose the right ankle brace for your needs (if appropriate) and suggestions for using one while playing volleyball. 

What Is an Ankle Brace?

An ankle brace is a fitted supportive garment or slip-on sleeve that provides additional support, injury prevention, strength, and stability to the ankle joint.

It allows the user to play their best volleyball game without worrying about potential injuries occurring, while at the same time stabilizing an existing injury (if one is present).

Volleyball game indoors.

 Why Wear an Ankle Brace?

Ankle braces are, I feel, an essential piece of protective equipment for athletes and active individuals in many different sports due to the support and protection they offer.

They help prevent a variety of ankle injuries by providing lateral support and pain relief to the ankle, minimizing the risk of ankle sprains and ligament injuries significantly. 

They’re a great option for high-impact sports requiring a lot of effort from the lower limbs. 

Check out this post for a good read on knee braces to help support your knees during sports. 

What Are Ankle Braces Made From?

The most traditional materials for ankle braces are either neoprene, nylon, or lycra (or a mixture of those materials). Some are also made with a cotton mixture.

Usually, ankle braces are made from quality materials that are built to last. 

All ankle braces should theoretically provide a comfortable fit while offering substantial ankle support

Now, there are different types of braces out there to be aware of. 

For example, rigid braces with fixed inserts are a good option for engaging in high-impact activities such as volleyball or soccer simply because they offer maximum protection against injury. 

On the other hand, lightweight, flexible, stretchy sleeves are better suited for everyday activities like walking or running due to their ease of use and breathable materials.

Common Features Of Ankle Braces

Volleyball players must be able to move around the court easily and quickly while also being protected from injury. They should provide extra support to the user while adapting to individual needs as the game progresses. 

This means a good ankle brace should incorporate these things:

  • Flexibility
  • Durable materials
  • Comfort
  • Breathability
  • Adjustable fit
  • Correct sizing
  • Open heel design
  • Lateral stability

Best Ankle Brace For Volleyball Players: A Guide

When it comes to playing volleyball, the right sort of ankle brace is vital for maximum protection and support without restricting movement or feeling uncomfortable during active play. 

It’s a fine balance when it comes to finding the right brace for your ankle, as various styles and materials are available on the market. 

This makes the search for an ankle brace somewhat baffling to many people, but don’t panic just yet. 

Below are some of my best suggestions on which ankle braces you should buy for the game ahead.

Bauerfeind Sports Ankle Support Dynamic - Ankle Compression Sleeve for Freedom of Movement - 3D AirKnit Fabric for Breathability - Premium Quality & Washable (L, Black)
$54.99

Introducing our slim Ankle Support Dynamic for increased stability, comfort, and mobility. Crafted with 3D AIRKNIT TECHNOLOGY in Germany, it's lightweight, durable, and fits seamlessly under athletic footwear. Designed for optimal performance in various sports, it guarantees a snug fit with our enhanced sizing system. Trust in Bauerfeind's 80+ years of expertise – our products are made in Germany with the highest standards for quality, support, and comfort.

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02/18/2024 06:30 am GMT

Stirrup Ankle Brace

Stirrup Ankle Brace With Air Pads For Sprains, Tendonitis - Ober Health

The stirrup ankle brace is a good contender for a more rigid brace fit. It has adjustable, strong velcro straps plus an open area at the front, alongside ‘air pads’ allowing for good airflow and breathability. It’s made from nylon with an internal aluminum bar, which is great for secure lateral movement, allowing maximum support against injury while keeping the ankle in a neutral position

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Compression Ankle Brace

Ankle Support Compression Brace for Arthritis, Pain Relief - Ober Health

This compression ankle brace is more of an ankle wrap in style, which some may prefer due to its full coverage of the ankle joint. 

It’s also fully adjustable and can be tightened or loosened as needed. With strong straps and lightweight material, this style of ankle brace is an excellent choice for milder injuries.

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Neoprene ankle brace

Neoprene Waterproof Ankle Brace for Swimming, Support & Sprains

This Neoprene brace by Braceability is for those of you who love water! Being fully water resistant, this wrap features a breathable, flexible fit with adjustable straps, allowing a secure feel. It’s great for helping relieve ankle pain while providing security to the ankle joint during play. 

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Choosing The Right Ankle Brace For You

Choosing which ankle brace is right for you takes thought and consideration. After all, you have specific needs that will be different for the next person. 

The type of sport you play, the position you take, and even your foot size all affect which ankle brace is the top pick. 

To ensure you find the perfect fit with the full range of motion, here are a few factors to consider:

  • Are you playing indoor volleyball or outdoors?
  • Do you have an existing ankle injury?
  • Do you need a high level of support?
  • What position do you play?
  • Do you have weak ankles that you know of?
  • What does your volleyball team recommend? (if applicable)
  • How often do you play?
  • For how long do you play?
  • Do you play other sports activities?

I recommend researching what professional players in similar positions commonly use to get an idea of what might suit your position (if you’re playing more regularly on a professional basis, I mean).

It’s also good to check in with physical therapists or medical professionals for advice, especially if you’re dealing with an injured ankle joint or other chronic issues such as plantar fasciitis or Achilles tendonitis.

And, of course, look for ankle braces that you can potentially ‘try before you buy.’

Or, at the very least, you can make a return if the fit isn’t right for you. 

Extra Tips While Playing Volleyball

  • Ensure you wear the right ankle brace for your needs. Consider things like breathability, freedom of movement, ankle stability, and durability. 
  • Go for an ankle brace with adjustable straps so you can tweak it during play as needed. 
  • Inspect your ankle brace every time you take it off to ensure it’s still maintaining its hold and structure.
  • Don’t do any sort of move that is beyond your current skill set. Of course, to improve your skills in the game, you need to practice, but take care when doing so. You’ll naturally improve the more you play. 

Summary

I hope this article has been useful in helping you consider the perfect choice of ankle brace for your needs.

It’s always a good idea to do research on which ankle brace would suit your requirements to avoid unnecessary costs to yourself.

Feel free to ask me anything if you have questions.

Do drop a comment below, and I’ll answer when I can. And for more interesting reads, click here.

About the Author

Hi there! I’m Dr. Keagen Hadley, OTD, OTR/L. Straight out of the University of Mary, I’m all about blending my know-how in knee health, well-being, and medical technology. As a licensed occupational therapy doc, I’m here to translate complex concepts into clear, actionable insights – whether it’s knee care or groundbreaking healthcare tech.

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