Why Parents Trust Ultra Ankle Ultra® Zoom Braces for Their Kids: Ensuring Safety with Advanced Ankle Support

As parents, we prioritize our children’s safety and well-being, especially when they are involved in sports and physical activities that may put them at risk for injuries. In these situations, protective gear is a must, and among the many options available, ankle braces are essential. One standout brand parents trust is Ultra Ankle, specifically the Ultra Zoom®, and for good reasons.

  1. Superior Support and Protection:

Ultra Zoom® braces offer robust and high-quality design that provides exceptional ankle support while still allowing for maximum mobility. Designed to stabilize and help prevent the ankle from injuries such as sprains, twists, and rolls, they are a top choice for parents whose kids play high-intensity sports like football, volleyball, or soccer.

  1. Innovative Design:

Ultra Zoom® braces feature advanced technology and an innovative design. The hinged-cuff design limits excessive movement that could lead to high ankle injuries while maintaining enough flexibility for peak performance. This means your young athlete will stay in the game and not on the sideline with an ankle injury. This balance between safety and performance is why many parents opt for Ultra Ankle.

  1. Comfort and Fit:

Ultra Ankle braces are celebrated for their snug fit and comfort, ensuring that kids can wear them for extended periods without feeling restricted or uncomfortable. Ultra Ankle braces, specifically the Ultra Zoom, custom form-fit to the athlete’s foot and ankle through body heat. This is perfect for growing children who need consistent and reliable support over several seasons of play.

  1. Durability:

Durability is a major selling point for Ultra Ankle braces. Made from high-quality materials, these braces can withstand rigorous physical activity, giving parents value for their money and the assurance that their child’s safety gear is up to the task. The Ultra Zoom brace can last up to 3 full seasons depending on use and demands put on the brace.

  1. Ease of Use:

Designed with usability in mind, Ultra Ankle Ultra Zoom braces are easy to put on, adjust, and take off, which is an essential feature for kids who might need to use them independently. This ease of use enhances their appeal among both kids and their parents. This differs from taping or lace-up braces which are both time consuming to put on and take off.

  1. Positive Reviews and Experiences:

Ultra Ankle braces have been positively received by professionals in the sports and health industries and parents alike. A user review from a parent named Sarah states, “My daughter has been using Ultra Ankle braces for her volleyball games, and they have been a game-changer. I no longer worry about her getting injured on the court. Plus, she loves how comfortable they are.” Another parent, John, shared, “I got Ultra Ankle braces for my son who plays soccer. They’ve stood up to some tough games, and he’s been injury-free. Highly recommended for any young athlete.”

These endorsements and positive experiences have helped build trust and a strong reputation for Ultra Ankle braces, making them a preferred choice among parents.

To summarize, parents prefer Ultra Ankle braces for their children because of their advanced design, superior support, durability, and positive reviews. Not only do these braces protect young athletes’ ankles, but they also provide parents with the assurance they need when their children are out on the field or court.

Ankle injuries are the second most prevalent injury in soccer, only behind head/facial injuries. With so much emphasis on the foot and ankle in soccer, it’s no wonder the ankle takes a beating.

Most ankle sprains in soccer occur during running, cutting or tackling. A high percentage of ankle injuries occur from direct side to side contact, as opposed to a front or back contact. Regardless of the mechanism of injury, the result is usually the ankle turning excessively inward, stretching the ankle ligaments. How much the ligaments stretch or tear will determine the extent of the ankle injury.

Types of Soccer Ankle Sprains

Grade 1 Ankle Sprain

Involves the ligament(s) being stretched and is usually accompanied by some swelling and a little soreness. This is the mildest type of ankle injury.

Grade 2 Ankle Sprain

Involves the ligament(s) partially tearing. With a grade 2 ankle injury you will typically have swelling and discoloration and you may also experience weight bearing pain.

Grade 3 Ankle Sprain

The most severe type of sprain and involves a complete tear of the ligament(s). Swelling, discoloration, weight bearing pain, and some noticeable ankle instability are associated with this type of injury.

Regardless of the extent of the ankle injury, it is always recommended to seek out medical attention from an athletic trainer, physical therapist or physician.

Ankle Injury Recovery

Please consult your physician or athletic trainer before attempting any rehabilitation exercises. Your injury may be too severe to undertake these exercises and it is always best to err on the side of caution.

RICE is the common method used by athletic trainers, coaches, and parents everywhere to quickly treat mild injuries. Follow the RICE protocol below to treat mild injuries if you’ve decided to not immediately see a medical professional.

Rest – Decrease your activity so your ankle has time to start healing.

Ice – You can apply ice to your injured ankle in the following ways:

  • Ice in a plastic bag (Apply to the ankle for 20-25 minutes)
  • Ice made in a paper cup (Apply to the ankle for 8-10 minutes and rip off the top of the paper cup as the ice melts)
  • Immersion in ice water (5-10 minutes)

You should ice your ankle many times a day with at least 30 minutes between each ice application.

Compression – Compression helps to reduce swelling, so tightly wrap an elastic bandage around the ankle and loosen the wrap if it becomes uncomfortable.

Elevation – Elevate the ankle above the level of your heart to reduce blood flow to the area and help alleviate increased swelling.

Returning to Competition

Ankle ligaments are non-elastic which means once they have been stretched as the result of an injury the ankle will become more unstable and susceptible to yet another injury.  Before returning to competition it’s a good idea to seek out an ankle brace that can help prevent another ankle injury. Before you start your soccer ankle brace search, it’s extremely important to understand the different ankle brace designs and how they may affect ankle strength, range of motion and performance.

Some soccer players wear the lace-up style ankle supports primarily because they are low profile and upon initial impression they appear to provide good ankle support. Lace-ups became popular as a replacement for the ankle tape job, which loses 70% of its effectiveness during the first 20 minutes of activity. A lace-up is basically a corset that restricts all ankle range of motion which is not ideal when you are trying to keep the ankle strong and maximize performance.  Also, by restricting normal up and down ankle motion, the ankle works against the lace-up causing it to lose support rapidly

Rigid plastic ankle braces are another style of ankle brace.  These types of ankle braces have a hinge and allow free up and down ankle motion to maximize performance and keep the muscles strong.  They will provide much more ankle protection than the lace-up support because the brace moves with the ankle, not against it so the straps stay securely in place maintaining long last support.  The downside is because these braces are rigid they can be uncomfortable and bulky which soccer players typically do not like.

A third style of ankle brace that offers the performance aspect of the hinged brace with the softness and low profile of the lace-up is the Ultra Zoom.  The brace shell is made of an advanced flexible material called Performathane that uses body heat to custom-fit to the ankle.  The hinged-cuff design allows full ankle range of motion and the cuff helps to restrict excessive ankle turning and twisting which causes both low and high ankle sprains.

Regardless of which type of ankle injury prevention methods you use as a soccer player, safely competing at a high level should always be one of your top priorities. If you’re a player with a history of soccer ankle injuries and want to speak with one of our certified athletic trainers about your specific situation, give us a call or send us a message and we’d be happy to help.

Ultra Zoom

Help prevent ankle injuries all season long.

Ultra High-5

Reinforce the ankle after a history of multiple ankle injuries

Ultra CTS

Maximize stabilization to treat acute ankle injuries

Unlike most other sports, where a player’s hands are important, choosing the right ankle brace for soccer is much more critical due to soccer players primarily utilizing their ankles and feet during play.

Imagine asking a basketball player to wear a rigid brace on his hand… that player would probably find it difficult to dribble and shoot because the brace takes away his touch on the ball and/or restricts his natural range of motion. The same goes for soccer players who rely on their ankle and foot to control the soccer ball, which is what makes choosing a soccer ankle brace difficult and frustrating.

When it comes to ankle guards, you don’t want too much restriction that would negatively impact your performance but if your ankle is unstable and isn’t braced properly you are highly susceptible to repeat ankle injuries. Fortunately, there are new types of ankle braces available that focus on support and performance – meaning soccer players are able to retain their full range of motion and ball touch while helping to prevent ankle sprains.

When sitting on the sidelines after numerous soccer ankle injuries isn’t an option anymore, it’s time to evaluate the different types of soccer ankle braces available.

Types of Soccer Ankle Braces

There are three main types of ankle braces available on the market today:

  1. Lace-up ankle supports – Fabric based lace-up design with wrap around straps.
  2. Rigid/Hard Plastic Braces – Semi-rigid hinge design with attachment straps.
  3. Soft Shell Ankle Braces – Flexible hinged-cuff design with attachment straps.

Lace-Up Ankle Braces

Lace-up ankle braces were first introduced in 1887 as a basic corset design that restricts all ankle range of motion. Lace-up braces of today will typically have straps that wrap around the ankle in a figure-8.

Since these braces can be laced up as tight as possible, they may give the wearer a false sense of support when they are first applied, however they lose support quickly as they resist the ankle’s natural range of motion. While lace-up ankle guards may feel comfortable because they are made from fabric, this fabric is also less durable and will easily rip and tear over time… not to mention absorb odors and start to smell pretty bad.

Research studies have shown that lace-up ankle braces can restrict performance by resisting the natural up and down range of motion of the ankle. This is one reason why we recommend athletes wear a hinged ankle brace for prevention purposes – this way the ankle does not weaken over time due to being held tightly in place. While all hinged ankle braces are not the same, they do provide the necessary range of motion to enhance ankle strength and performance unlike the lace-up type braces.

Overall, the lace-up ankle brace is designed for individuals on a budget needing mild ankle support that are not engaging in competitive and/or high intensity activity. Some of the better brands in this category are McDavid®, ShockDoctor®, Cramer® and ASO®.

Rigid Ankle Braces

Rigid, or semi-rigid ankle braces are made of hard plastic and typically have a hinge that allows full up and down ankle range of motion.  The rigid hinged ankle brace was first introduced commercially in 1985. A pivoting hinge connecting the bottom foot section on both sides of the ankle to an upright section that was secured with a strap to the lower leg.  The innovative hinge design offered the athlete free up and down ankle motion to run and jump without restriction. With the brace moving with the ankle, and not against it like with lace-ups, the brace stayed securely in place maintaining longer-lasting ankle support.

Historically soccer players have stayed away from these rigid ankle braces for three reasons:

  1.  Since the brace is rigid or semi-rigid it can be bulky to wear and trying to fit the brace in a tight-fitting soccer cleat can be difficult.
  2. The more rigid the ankle brace is the more uncomfortable it can be to wear for extended periods of time.
  3. Soccer players say that rigid braces effect their touch on the ball as the ball can be deflected off the brace creating an uncontrolled dribble.

Hinged ankle braces are good for individuals looking for moderate ankle support to help protect or prevent the basic “low” ankle sprain or inversion (turning) ankle injury. Brands in this category are Active Ankle® and McDavid®.

Soft Shell Ankle Braces

The newest and most advanced type of ankle brace to hit the market utilizes a “soft shell” design (trademarked Performathane®) to work with a player’s body heat to create a flexible, custom fit. These custom fitting ankle braces are supportive enough to help prevent ankle injuries but are also flexible and low-profile enough to be worn in the standard tight-fitting soccer cleat for extended periods of time. Introduced in 2000, the purpose of the soft shell design is to provide support as close to the skin as possible. By creating a form-fitting ankle brace around the ankle joint you are able to control excessive joint motion much better than older types of braces.

Our soft shell ankle brace, the Ultra Zoom, also incorporates the next-generation hinged-cuff design. While hinged braces restrict excessive ankle turning, the hinged-cuff design restricts excessive ankle turning and twisting to help prevent both low and high ankle injuries. For that reason, the hinged-cuff design ankle brace offers a higher level of protection than either the lace-up or hinged only ankle brace design.

The soft shell ankle brace is best for athletes who want to help prevent ankle injuries or players with mild/moderate ankle instability. Typically lasting multiple sports season, these are also the most cost effective ankle bracing solution in the market due to their durability.

Soccer Cleats and Ankle Braces

Low-profile, flexible ankle braces fit in almost every traditional soccer cleat, however in recent years newer cleat designs utilizing a sock-like liner may be too tight to insert an ankle brace in. These select newer cleats, where the upper shoe is one complete piece, are difficult not only to fit ankle braces but other medical devices such as custom orthopedic inserts as well. If you’re a soccer player that needs to wear a preventative ankle brace, we recommend a low top soccer cleat with a traditional tongue and laces if possible. This type of soccer cleat creates a larger opening to insert the ankle with the brace applied.

If you have any more questions about soccer ankle braces, feel free to send our athletic trainers a message online or by commenting on this post below!

Ultra Zoom

Help prevent ankle injuries all season long.

Ultra High-5

Reinforce the ankle after a history of multiple ankle injuries

Ultra CTS

Maximize stabilization to treat acute ankle injuries