In theory, the only braces that could potentially weaken the ankle are those that limit the joint’s natural range of motion such as wraparound or fabric lace-up ankle braces. Lace-up braces bind up the joint and restrict the ankles natural movement needed to keep the muscles strong which is why we no longer recommend athletes wear them.  Ultra Ankle braces have a hinge, so they allow full up and down natural range of motion necessary to enhance performance and keep the muscles strong.