Most comfortable knee brace?

7:37 p.m. on February 14, 2011 (EST)
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25 forum posts

Hey guys, I'm new here and fairly knew to hiking/backpacking. Hoping to increase the number of trips I make this summer when the weather warms up, but in the mean time I'm looking for a comfortable knee brace to wear while hiking/backpacking. I live in the Pacific Northwest, so there are a lot of great mountains and hikes around here, but I don't want to risk longer-term injury by not protecting my (bad) knees.

Any suggestions on relatively affordable, yet comfortable, knee braces? Thanks!

11:05 p.m. on February 15, 2011 (EST)
102 reviewer rep
2,995 forum posts

As an athlete with four surgeries on one knee alone, I would discourage you to go hiking any distance from a parking lot, if doing so depends on a brace.  If strength training and physical therapy cannot free you from relying on a brace, you are at risk attempting to negotiate a rugged trail.  Rescue may be an option, but it is not ethical going hiking with a pre-known condition that may result in this outcome.


11:14 a.m. on February 16, 2011 (EST)
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25 forum posts

Thanks Ed.

I've had ACL reconstruction on one knee, and my other knee isn't in awesome shape, but neither are debilitating, and I've done hikes with relatively few problems (some soreness maybe). I use poles and am not reckless on the trail. I was hoping the hiking itself would help with strength training, doing as many day hikes as I can before I do some longer trips. I find myself with little time to do any during other times. You're right though, if I felt like I was relying on a brace and more prone to injury, it wouldn't be a good idea.


1:14 p.m. on February 16, 2011 (EST)
848 reviewer rep
3,902 forum posts

I know nothing about knees, except that they are essential for many of the activities I enjoy, so treat yours very well.

I'd ask a medical professional, preferably an active outdoorsy one, what they recommend for you.

For what it's worth, one of our members wrote a review of the Cho-Pat Dual Action Knee Strap, which I often see advertised in Runners World and other magazines:

Still, I'd ask a doctor.

4:51 p.m. on February 17, 2011 (EST)
3 reviewer rep
14 forum posts

I am a 60 year old hiker who has been a fairly serious exerciser most of my adult life.  Surfing; running; hunting and so on----injured one knee playing soccer in college and one wrestling in high school.  What works the best with my knees is:  Streatching each morning; a liberal coat of a product called Biofreze (typically sold at Ciropractor's offices), & I  have two neoprene sleeves I purchsed from a company named McDavid (on line) which I keep folded down under each knee.  At the first sign of discomfort I simply fold the sleve up and I have never not finished a hike.  Might want to give it a try---I'm Certainly not a Doc.  but has worked for me:

June 23, 2018
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