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Best Ankle Braces for Running: Top 5 Picks for 2021

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Are you wondering which the best ankle braces for running are?

If you’re an active person or enjoy jogging, it’s natural to consider a brace to prevent a sprained ankle or other injuries when on the move. 

So, let’s see my top picks for the best running braces in 2021. 

Start with my favorites, then work your way through the entire review guide for all the details.

Check: Best Weak Ankle Support for Elderly

Best Ankle Braces for Running Top Picks at a Glance

FYI, this post contains affiliate links. We earn a commission if you make a purchase at no extra cost to you.

Check the table below for a side-by-side comparison of our favorites!

Best for Athletic Activities: Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace
Preview
Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace for Injury Prevention, Provides Support and Helps Prevent Sprained Ankles in Volleyball, Basketball, Football - Supportive, Secure Brace for Athletes - Black, Small/Medium
Top Benefit
Restricts unnatural movement to prevent injures
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Best Lace-Up Brace
Preview
Zenith Ankle Brace, Lace Up Adjustable Support – for Running, Basketball, Injury Recovery, Sprain! Ankle Wrap for Men, Women, and Children
Top Benefit
Double-stitched seams and high-quality neoprene for durability  
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Best for Ankle Weakness
Preview
Curad Figure Eight Lace-Up Ankle Splint
Top Benefit
Comfortable material
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5 Best Ankle Brace for Running (Review & Buyer’s Guide)

Running is an excellent activity to keep you in shape, but it places stress on your ankle joints. As such, you’re at risk of sprains, strains, stress fractures, and Achilles tendon injuries.

But a brace can make all the differences because it provides additional stability and support for your foot and joints. It can even help with arthritic pain. 

A study on basketball players also concluded that braces “reduced the incidence but not the severity of acute ankle injuries.

#1 Winner: BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace

BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace - Foot and Ankle Support for Ankle Sprain

BioSkin has one of the best ankle braces for running with a unique design to restrict harmful movements and prevent injuries.

Physical Attributes

  • Hypoallergenic material
  • Breathable
  • Medical-grade compression
  • FootLok straps

Quantitative Measurements

  • Available in five sizes from X-small to X-large
  • Suitable for peroneal tendonitis, Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, sprains, and weak ankles

Benefits & Drawbacks at a Glance

BenefitsDrawbacks
FootLok strap acts as an external ligament for extra protection and stability Customers report that the brace runs smaller than the provided sizing chart
LightweightNot ideal for Posterior tibial tendon dysfunction (PTTD)
Provides medical-grade compression
Promotes normal arch posture

Benefits

BioSkin Trilok brace impresses with its FootLok strap, which acts as an external ligament for extra protection and stability. And you can change the support level easily by adjusting the straps.

Moreover, this running brace is lightweight, easy to maintain, and fits into running shoes. It also provided medical-grade compression to reduce swelling and inflammation in the tendons. 

Best of all, the unique design promotes normal arch posture and ensures a safe range of motion without hindering your performance.

Drawbacks 

Customers report that the brace runs smaller than the provided sizing chart and that it’s not easy to figure out how to put the brace the right way. 

BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace - Foot and Ankle Support for Ankle Sprains

How It Compares to Others and Why

  • Ultima material for external compression and increased blood flow
  • Suitable for a night splint 
  • Supports and stabilizes the ankle joint without affecting your range of movement. 

 How the Product Evolved 

  • Compared to Bioskin’s premium braces, the TriLock has a superior design with innovative FootLok straps. 

Extra Tips

  • Depending on your injury, you wear the white FootLok strap on the outside or the inside of your foot.
BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace - Foot and Ankle Support for Ankle Sprains, Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, Tendonitis and Active Ankle Stability - Lightweight, Hypo-Allergenic (Medium)
1,400 Reviews
BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace - Foot and Ankle Support for Ankle Sprains, Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, Tendonitis and Active Ankle Stability - Lightweight, Hypo-Allergenic (Medium)
  • FOOT and ANKLE SUPPORT: Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, Peroneal Tendonitis, ankle sprains and rolled ankles are caused by weakened or torn tendons. The Trilok is made from three main components that mimic your body’s natural tendons to secure your ankle and allow a safe range of motion. These straps encourage healthy arch posture, and prevent inversion and eversion.
  • CALCULATED COMPRESSION: The micro-fleece lined compression sleeve is a comfortable way to reduce swelling in the foot and ankle after an injury. Compression also improves recovery time, increasing blood flow to bring nutrients to the site of the injury.
  • PREMIUM COMFORT: The Trilok is made from soft Hypo-Allergenic materials that are breathable and low profile, rather than bulky, suffocating canvas braces. The Trilok allows for active mobility but restricts harmful movements making it perfect for sports and regaining mobility.
  • FIT and SIZING: Measure around your arch at the thickest point and compare this measurement to the size chart shown in the second image. Then measure the circumference of your leg right above your ankle and make sure this measurement is below the maximum ankle circumference.

#2 Best for Athletic Activities: Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace

Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace for Injury Prevention

If you love playing football, basketball, or volleyball, you won’t be disappointed by Ultra and its best ankle brace for running injury prevention. 

Physical Attributes

  • Made from thermoplastic resin
  • Hinged design
  • Softshell technology
  • Black or white in color

Quantitative Measurements

  • Available in small/medium and large/X-large size
  • Suitable for ankle instability and acute sprain injuries
BenefitsDrawbacks
Provides plenty of joint support Not the cheapest option for runners
Restricts unnatural movement to prevent injures Thin plastic sole
Lightweight design with easy-to-maintain material
Fits in most shoes and is easy to apply
Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace for Injury Prevention

How it Compares to Others and Why

  • Hinged design instead of rigid one to provide freedom of movement 
  • Fits right or left foot and provides arch support

How the Product Evolved

Ultra has braces of different heights to suit a wide range of people and provide adequate rehabilitation. 

Expert Tips

  • Measure your foot’s circumference to choose the right size. Don’t go by your shoe size. 
  • You can purchase replacement straps or longer straps from the manufacturer. 
Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace for Injury Prevention, Provides Support and Helps Prevent Sprained Ankles in Volleyball, Basketball, Football - Supportive, Secure Brace for Athletes - Black, Small/Medium
913 Reviews
Ultra Zoom Ankle Brace for Injury Prevention, Provides Support and Helps Prevent Sprained Ankles in Volleyball, Basketball, Football - Supportive, Secure Brace for Athletes - Black, Small/Medium
  • Prevent future injuries and protect your ankle from sprains with this supportive and secure brace. The Ultra Zoom ankle brace is on your ankle in seconds, protects you for hours, and lasts for years.
  • This ankle brace can be put on in seconds, yet allows you to move freely in all the natural ways, without the stiffness of other braces. You’ll play better and play more, losing less time to injuries.
  • High-tech materials including a hinged-cuff design allows full range of motion for long lasting ankle support and performance. Soft shell technology is extremely form-fitting and offers multi-season durability.
  • The Ultra Zoom is ideal for athletes who play volleyball (club, youth, professional), basketball, football or anyone who wants to help prevent ankle injuries without restricting their performance.
  • SIZING: Reference size chart in photos and measure by ankle circumference. DO NOT base off of shoe size - even if you have a long foot you might wear a Small/Medium brace. Fits right or left ankle. Sold in single units, NOT pairs.

#3 Best Budget-Friendly: Vive Sprained Ankle Brace 

Vive Sprained Ankle Brace for Women, Men

Vive has a comfortable brace that’s great if you need something affordable but effective for foot protection. 

Physical Attributes

  • Made from neoprene
  • Hook-and-loop closure with multi-directional straps 
  • Open heel

Quantitative Measurements

  • Universal size for men/women up to 15
  • Suitable for a variety of conditions, including bursitis, arthritis, post-surgery recovery
BenefitsDrawbacks
Great for everyday activities due to its slim design and breathable materialBulkier than other models
Speeds the healing process thanks to its heat-retaining abilities and strong compressionNo size chart is available 
Fits most shoes and has a 60-day money-back guarantee
Vive Sprained Ankle Brace for Women, Men

How It Compares to Others and Why

  • Adjustable multi-directional straps that allow you to change the level of support
  • Open heel design for additional comfort 

How the Product Evolved

  • Compared to Viva lace-up ankle brace, this one is easier to apply and is made of a more durable material.  

Expert Tips

  • You can wear the brace with or without socks. 
Sale
Vive Sprained Ankle Brace for Women, Men - Right or Left Compression Foot Immobilizer Support - Basketball, Volleyball Neoprene Stabilizer Wrap Protector - Tendonitis, Heel Spur, Running Feet Sprain
434 Reviews
Vive Sprained Ankle Brace for Women, Men - Right or Left Compression Foot Immobilizer Support - Basketball, Volleyball Neoprene Stabilizer Wrap Protector - Tendonitis, Heel Spur, Running Feet Sprain
  • STABILIZING ANKLE SUPPORT: Providing additional stability and support for ankle tendons and joints, the heavy-duty ankle brace reduces the risk of reinjury. Adjustable to reduce pain and pressure caused by arthritis, sprains, swelling, bursitis, tendonitis, muscle fatigue, injuries and surgery. Eliminates the need for taping up your ankle with the multi-directional adjustable straps.
  • CUSTOMIZABLE COMPRESSION THERAPY: Adjustable cross-brace compression bands provide the optimal amount of pressure for comfortable support and effective pain relief. The neoprene compression brace also retains therapeutic heat and increases blood circulation to promote healing from injury or surgery. Provides customized support for weak or sore ankles.
  • ADJUSTABLE CONTOURED DESIGN: Dual straps wrap around the ankle providing lateral and medial support for greater stability. The brace is fully adjustable with strong hook and loop fasteners for a customized, nonslip fit. The open heel, contoured design allows for a minimal range of motion during recreational activities or sporting events to minimize the risk of injury.
  • VERSATILE LIGHTWEIGHT BRACE: Breathable and lightweight, the neoprene blend is slim fitting for superior comfort. The versatile designed ankle support can be worn on either foot, with or without socks and can easily be worn with most shoe styles. Great for everyday wear and for running, hiking, baseball, tennis, golf, cycling, soccer, basketball and weightlifting.
  • VIVE GUARANTEE: 60 day unconditional guarantee so you can purchase now with confidence.

#4 Best Lace-Up Brace: Zenith Lace-Up Adjustable Support

Zenith Ankle Brace, Lace Up Adjustable Support

Zenith is another great ankle brace for runners, athletes, and players, which impresses with its design

Physical Attributes

  • Made from neoprene
  • Lace-up closure and Velcro straps
  • Adjustable

Quantitative Measurements

  • Available in three sizes – small, medium, and large 
  • Suitable for acute injuries, tendonitis, and pain relief 
BenefitsDrawbacks
Double-stitched seams and high-quality neoprene for durability  Not the easiest brace to apply
Adjustable level of support and tightness for a snug fitNot available in many sizes, so it’s not a good choice for people with wide feet  
Reduce/eliminate ankle pain by immobilizing the joints without restricting your ability to run
Zenith Ankle Brace, Lace Up Adjustable Support

How It Compares to Others and Why

  • Figure-8 lace design with Velcro straps for adjustable tightness and a snug fit 
  • Mult-layer, padded material for additional comfort

How the Product Evolved

  • No information about upgrades, but we’d like to see the brace in more sizes.  

Expert Tips

  • For maximum protection against future injuries, you should wear this high-quality brace during strenuous activities. 
Sale
Zenith Ankle Brace, Lace Up Adjustable Support – for Running, Basketball, Injury Recovery, Sprain! Ankle Wrap for Men, Women, and Children
4,989 Reviews
Zenith Ankle Brace, Lace Up Adjustable Support – for Running, Basketball, Injury Recovery, Sprain! Ankle Wrap for Men, Women, and Children
  • ✅ An ankle brace that moves with you: Invest in an ankle support that will last. Zenith has developed a brace with the end user in mind. Made from the highest quality nylon and neoprene, you will get the best possible support and breathability. Double stitched seams also mean you will not have to keep spending your money on new braces every month!
  • ✅ Ankle pain, be gone: Proven to reduce or eliminate ankle pain caused by sprains, tendonitis and other acute injuries. Our brace is designed to be used for healing and prevention of sports related injuries as well as minor accidents. The side straps contour your ankle to immobilize the foot without restricting your ability to walk or run.
  • ✅ Stay on your feet: We specifically made this brace to perform well in ANY activity, including: volleyball, basketball, hiking, wrestling, running, soccer etc. Keep your peak performance and have peace of mind knowing your ankle will not be at risk of injury. Unlike an ankle sleeve, our brace can be adjusted in order to customize the level of support you are after. The lace-up front and straps give you the freedom to adjust tightness.
  • ✅ Accurate fit: Having the right size brace is important to make sure the device functions properly, keeps your ankle secure and does not move excessively.

#5 Best for Ankle Weakness: Curad Figure Eight Lace-Up Ankle Splint

Curad Figure Eight Lace-Up Ankle Splint

Curad lace-up splint won’t disappoint you if you’re looking for the best weak ankle support and instability. 

Physical Attributes

  • Made of vinyl
  • Plastic inserts 
  • Low profile design

Quantitative Measurements 

  • Available in three sizes – small, medium, and large
  • Suitable for mild to moderate foot injuries 
BenefitsDrawbacks
Comfortable material for maximum compression and breathabilityNot available in large sizes
Figure-8 lacing provides adequate supports and prevents unnatural joint movement The plastic can be uncomfortable for long periods of time
Platic inserts offer additional medial and lateral support 

How It Compares to Others and Why

  • Made of breathable vinyl to prevent skin irritation and sweating 
  • Provides sufficient freedom of movement for normal physical activity

How the Product Evolved

  • Compared to other braces from the Performance series, this model has laces instead of straps for a secure fit. 

 Expert Tips

  • You should wear the brace over a sock.
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How to Choose the Best Ankle Brace for Running

The best running brace should have several key features to ensure it will do a good job of protecting your foot when exercising. Let’s talk about them.

Comfort

Look for braces made for breathable material to ensure proper ventilation and flexibility. Too much sweating leads to bacteria build-up and skin irritation.

Support and Compression 

The best brace should keep your ankle from rolling when running without restricting your natural range of movement. And compression can speed up the recovery process if you suffer an injury.

Weight

The heavier the brace, the harder it will be to move around or run. Choose a lightweight brace with a slim design so that it can fit in your shoe. 

Size

To be effective, a brace should be the right size to provide adequate support and compression. Always check the manufacturer’s instructions about how to measure for the brace. 

Easy to Wear

Choose a brace with a straightforward design to avoid wondering how to wear an ankle brace for running

FAQs

Should You Wear An Ankle Brace While Running?

A brace is an excellent way to prevent your foot from rolling when running. As such, you should wear one if you’re prone to instability or are recovering from an injury.  

How Long Should I Wear a Brace After a Sprain?

In general, you’ll have to wear the brace for one to three weeks, depending on the severity of your injury. Always consult with your doctor to ensure you don’t overuse the brace.

Who Needs an Ankle Brace?

People with acute injuries or chronic medical conditions may require an ankle brace or support for additional stability. The same goes for athletic people at high risk of injuries.

Conclusion

As you see, a brace can improve your foot stability, correct your gait, and reduce the risk of acute injuries when you’re running. 

But is it good to wear an ankle brace when you have foot arthritis? Yes! A brace not only supports but also compresses, which reduces inflammation and pain related to arthritic.

Final Recommendation

BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace - Foot and Ankle Support for Ankle Sprains, Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, Tendonitis and Active Ankle Stability - Lightweight, Hypo-Allergenic (Medium)
1,400 Reviews
BioSkin Trilok Ankle Brace - Foot and Ankle Support for Ankle Sprains, Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, Tendonitis and Active Ankle Stability - Lightweight, Hypo-Allergenic (Medium)
  • FOOT and ANKLE SUPPORT: Plantar Fasciitis, PTTD, Peroneal Tendonitis, ankle sprains and rolled ankles are caused by weakened or torn tendons. The Trilok is made from three main components that mimic your body’s natural tendons to secure your ankle and allow a safe range of motion. These straps encourage healthy arch posture, and prevent inversion and eversion.
  • CALCULATED COMPRESSION: The micro-fleece lined compression sleeve is a comfortable way to reduce swelling in the foot and ankle after an injury. Compression also improves recovery time, increasing blood flow to bring nutrients to the site of the injury.
  • PREMIUM COMFORT: The Trilok is made from soft Hypo-Allergenic materials that are breathable and low profile, rather than bulky, suffocating canvas braces. The Trilok allows for active mobility but restricts harmful movements making it perfect for sports and regaining mobility.
  • FIT and SIZING: Measure around your arch at the thickest point and compare this measurement to the size chart shown in the second image. Then measure the circumference of your leg right above your ankle and make sure this measurement is below the maximum ankle circumference.

References

  • ACE Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine Institute. 2018. “ACE Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine Institute.” ACE Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine Institute. February 2, 2018. https://ace-pt.org/should-i-wear-ankle-braces/.
  • “Brace for It: When to Use an Ankle Brace.” 2017. Https://Newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/. 2017. https://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/brace-for-it-when-to-use-an-ankle-brace/.
  • Geraets, Anna. 2016. “To Brace or Not to Brace – Pros and Cons of Bracing – Peak Physio.” Peak-Physio.com.au. September 3, 2016. https://www.peak-physio.com.au/brace-not-brace-pros-cons-bracing/.
  • Holland, Kimberly. 2016. “Is It a Sprain or a Strain? Tips for Identification.” Healthline. Healthline Media. December 5, 2016. https://www.healthline.com/health/sprain-vs-strain#treatment.
  • Kercher, Mia. 2021. “The Best Ankle Support for Running: Address Your Ankle Sprains Now.” Marathon Handbook. January 19, 2021. https://marathonhandbook.com/ankle-support-for-running/.
  • Pelletier-Galarneau, Matthieu, Patrick Martineau, Maxime Gaudreault, and Xuan Pham. 2015. “Review of Running Injuries of the Foot and Ankle: Clinical Presentation and SPECT-CT Imaging Patterns.” American Journal of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging 5 (4): 305–16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4529586/.
  • “Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD) – Foot Health Facts.” 2021. Foothealthfacts.org. 2021. https://www.foothealthfacts.org/conditions/posterior-tibial-tendon-dysfunction-(pttd).
lady holding her ankle

What do you think about these 5 best ankle braces for running? Have you ever used one? Share your experience in the comments. 

About GrigorinaLoa

Grigorina discovered that writing is her vocation early in her school years. Since then, she's taken part in several literary contests. For the past three years, she's also been an ELS teacher, pouring her heart into showing children and adults how important English is for their future. She has a Bachelor's degree in Applied Linguistics, an ESL Teacher's degree, and a Master's degree in Accounting. Follow her on FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM

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