THE EFFECT OF SPRING-LOADED KNEE BRACES ON VERTICAL JUMP, SPRINT PERFORMANCE, AND USER PERCEPTION
Morgan Karst, Zoe Perrin, Justin Moody, Tyler D. Williams, Courteney L. Benjamin, Christopher G. Ballmann, FACSM, Rebecca R. Rogers. Samford University, Birmingham, AL.
BACKGROUND: Prophylactic and functional knee braces have been studied extensively on the effect they have on exercise performance. New spring-loaded knee braces have been suggested to improve athletic performance; however, these claims have yet to be studied. The purpose of this study is to determine the effects of spring-loaded assistive knee braces on anaerobic exercises and user perception. METHODS: Physically active, college-aged males (22.3±0.6 yrs, 186.0±23.5 lbs, 72.3±0.6 in) were recruited into the study. The study was approved by the university Institutional Review Board. All participants completed a health history and informed consent. Participants visited our laboratory two times and completed a series of exercise tests while either wearing the spring-loaded knee braces or no knee braces in a randomized, cross-over design. Each visit, vertical jump height (m) and a 10-yard sprint time (s) were measured and at the completion of each test, participants rated their level of comfort, stability, and perception of performance on a 100mm visual analogue scale (VAS). RESULTS: The exercise performance variables of vertical jump height (p=0.14) and 10-yard sprint time (p=0.36) were not significantly different between braced and unbraced conditions. Additionally, there was no significant differences between subjective measurements of vertical jump stability (p=0.20), vertical jump performance (p=0.14), and 10-yard sprint performance (p=0.08) during braced and unbraced conditions. However, VAS scores were significantly higher on vertical jump comfort (p=0.04), 10-yard sprint comfort (p=0.03), and 10-yard sprint stability (p=0.03) in the unbraced condition. CONCLUSION: Results suggest wearing a spring-loaded knee brace does not improve exercise performance but can negatively affect the user’s perception of comfort and stability.
Karst, M; Perrin, Z; Moody, J; Williams, TD; Benjamin, CL; Ballmann, FACSM, CG; and Rogers, RR
"THE EFFECT OF SPRING-LOADED KNEE BRACES ON VERTICAL JUMP, SPRINT PERFORMANCE, AND USER PERCEPTION,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Proceedings: Vol. 16:
1, Article 319.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijesab/vol16/iss1/319