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Thread: Knee braces?

  1. #1
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    New question here. Knee braces?

    I've heart my knee (MRI fun is scheduled for Monday), and I'm looking at getting a knee brace to make riding or stopping the bike less painful. It looks like possibly a MCL, ACL, bone bruise, or mensicus injury.

    There are braces by Donjoy and various other companies for motorcycling and skiing that MTBers look like they use. Since I ride with flats already (no clipless) and just learning to DH, is there any recommendations you guys here recommend?

    (No, I'm not riding again until I get doctor's clearance. Just planning ahead )

  2. #2
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    If your insurance company will cover a custom brace, you can get a Donjoy (or similar) and wear a knee pad over it, or get a CTi designed for motocross with built-in knee pad. If you have to pay for it, look at the Asterisk Cell with removable knee pad. I've worn both a Donjoy and an Asterisk, and the custom brace offers a lot more support, but the Asterisk is a lot better than nothing on an unstable knee.

  3. #3
    sixsixtysix
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    I have ruptured my ACL 3 times, the last time they didn't do a reconstruction so I now have no ACL, and a unstable knee. I have also torn the MCL, PCL and had a full meniscusoscopy, along with a bunch of micro fractures, so my knee is bone on bone and likes to slide around. Basically its F'ed.

    I still ride DH, and do a ton of pedaling, and I use a Donjoy Extreme Armor brace which is meant for skiing and MX. It has a attachable knee pad, that doesn't do as good as job as say a 661 Kyle Strait, but trust me, once you jack your knee bad enough, you'll learn to fall in ways to do anything you can to protect it so its not that big of a deal.

    You can go the full custom prescription brace route, and I have in the past but honestly they are pricey and you're going to beat the hell out it. I am on my 2nd Donjoy Armor in 3 years just because with all the pedaling the hinges eventually just wear out.

  4. #4
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    Take a look at a Townsend Custom Knee Brace

    Two left knee ACL reconstructions for me. I started with a custom Lenox Hill brace during my basketball playing days in the 80's and 90's. When I started mountain biking I moved to a DonJoy that provided better mobility with improved knee stability. As I have gotten older, there is increasing daily arthritis pain and stiffness. Townsend is my current biking brace of choice. Comfort, knee stability/unloading and a superior hinge design were the selling points for me.

    http://www.townsenddesign.com/Townse...ufacturer.html

    Jim

  5. #5
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    Thanks everyone. I've gotten back the results of the MRI (not pretty):
    Torn ACL (basically hasn't been there for years)
    Torn Meniscus
    Partial tear MCL
    Bone bruise near the LCL

    I'm on PT, and I'm in the process of rebuidling the leg and rebuilding my riding style (wearing Times with 17 degree release and fit with orthodics and shims), and swimming.

    Now I'm on light track work and relatively easy riding. The knee brace I want to wear is for DH only, because I think I'm fine with rebuilding my leg until I get surgery (looking like the Sept / Oct timeframe), and I'd like to make sure I have knee protection for DH riding.

    I've also gone to a moto shop, and they recommended something called at EXS web brace. There's also the 661 ones, but they don't look as supportive.

    The Asterisk look very protective and supportive, but only for DH riding, and I haven't heard any response about those. The thing is, I can't seeing wearing armour over DonJoys, but a few people have pointed out one that has some armor (the Defiance III), and I think that's what I'm going to look for because it covers all sorts of aggressive sports.

    I need to see if I can get a doctor recommendation for it. In the meantime, I'll be hitting the aggressive PT for now.

    Sixsixtysix: The injuries in my knee are pretty bad, and I've been reading your posts. Have you looked into the Synvisc injections? It looks like it might provide you some relief.

    Do you know how much the Defiance costs sans insurance? I may be paying for this out of pocket too.

  6. #6
    sixsixtysix
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes

    Sixsixtysix: The injuries in my knee are pretty bad, and I've been reading your posts. Have you looked into the Synvisc injections? It looks like it might provide you some relief.

    Do you know how much the Defiance costs sans insurance? I may be paying for this out of pocket too.
    Mine actually doesn't bother me too much with my regiment of glucosamine, and a crap load of other supplements. Or it could just be that its been shot for half my life and I have gotten used to it.

    The Defiance is about $900 out of pocket, but its a custom brace, so you would need to get fit for it. Problem I have found is with custom braces and riding, your legs tend to have a little ebb and flow in size and they don't always fit the same each time. I have a older Defiance, but for riding I just use the Armor, with is the same brace minus the custom fitting part and about half the price. ($450)

  7. #7
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    Healing vibes my friend

    I blew out my MCL playing lacrosse in high school and wore something similar to this for a few years afterwards. I mainly used it for more lacrosse, snowboarding and mtb. I took some glucosamine and did some pretty intensive rehab and now I cant really tell the difference 5 years later

    http://www.kneeshop.com/proddetail.a...X/069XX&cat=13

  8. #8
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    Sixsixtysix: thanks, I'll get the armor instead. It definitely looks like the better option. Btw, what else are you taking besides glucosemine? I'm taking glocosemine/controidin and high absorbion calcium.

    I was able to walk on the track tonight (nice padded track) for 30 minutes tonight. No pain, tis a good thing. Also, lots and lots of ice.

    Spazzy: I'm doing some very intensive rehab (I seem to need a two hour nap everyday right now, ugh, because it's taking that much out of me right now), and working on building a good base, as much as I can when it's not raining here. Good time this week with no rain, and this is my second week of PT. I'm also swimming, walking (when I can), and relatively easy mountain biking.

    I definitely plan on using the brace for DH riding or more technical XC, but I'm not sure I need it for the easy stuff. I'd like to start building my own stability in my muscles as much as possible, but I'm not sure how realistic that is before getting the surgery.

    I'm also working on losing weight, but it's really freaking hard to do. But, before I get the surgery, I really got to get back to a fighting weight.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes
    Sixsixtysix: thanks, I'll get the armor instead. It definitely looks like the better option. Btw, what else are you taking besides glucosemine? I'm taking glocosemine/controidin and high absorbion calcium.

    I was able to walk on the track tonight (nice padded track) for 30 minutes tonight. No pain, tis a good thing. Also, lots and lots of ice.

    Spazzy: I'm doing some very intensive rehab (I seem to need a two hour nap everyday right now, ugh, because it's taking that much out of me right now), and working on building a good base, as much as I can when it's not raining here. Good time this week with no rain, and this is my second week of PT. I'm also swimming, walking (when I can), and relatively easy mountain biking.

    I definitely plan on using the brace for DH riding or more technical XC, but I'm not sure I need it for the easy stuff. I'd like to start building my own stability in my muscles as much as possible, but I'm not sure how realistic that is before getting the surgery.

    I'm also working on losing weight, but it's really freaking hard to do. But, before I get the surgery, I really got to get back to a fighting weight.
    Awesome, just remember to keep your spirits high and keep on track with the rehab, sounds like you are on the right path towards getting better

  10. #10
    sixsixtysix
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stripes
    Sixsixtysix: thanks, I'll get the armor instead. It definitely looks like the better option. Btw, what else are you taking besides glucosemine? I'm taking glocosemine/controidin and high absorbion calcium.
    My daily regiment is:
    Glucosamine/Controidin/MSM, Calcium, Potassium, Zinc, Fish Oils, Multi V and aspirin, but its an overall thing, not just for my knee.

  11. #11
    Uphill? What's that
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    In the last year i have had my ACL replaced and then broke my knee cap in 2 which required 3 titanium screws and wire to put it back together. Insurance paid for a custom CTI brace for me and i have to tell you i am not impressed it wont stay in place and the knee cup is a joke. After some research I picked up a set of Asterisk knee braces and have to tell you i am very impressed with them. They have alot of adjustability and the hinges are very smooth you don't feel any resistance while pedaling and the knee cup works just like they say it does. It would be worth your while to find a Motocross store that carries them and check them out. The only bad thing i can say about them is that they are hot... but if it keeps me off crutches its worth it.

  12. #12
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    I use Pod braces distributed by Fox for moto and skiing but don't use them for biking.
    Keep the Country country.

  13. #13
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    See, I'm between two types: a DonJoy to protect strictly the left knee during rides, or getting the Asterisk for DH riding. If I could get insurance to cover the DonJoy, that would make me very happy because then I could use the DonJoy for XC for now, and the Asterisk for DH.

    For the Asterisk, does it keep your lateral motion fairly strong? I like their adjustability, but they look like they need to be custom fitted anyway. How well do they work for riding and not slipping? Are they pretty comfortable too?

    Too bad they're really warm. It would be awesome to wear them for XC, but I'm not sure I can handle pedaling in something that warm.

    Any thoughts on the EVS web knee brace? The moto dude seemed really partial to that too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob-Bob
    In the last year i have had my ACL replaced and then broke my knee cap in 2 which required 3 titanium screws and wire to put it back together. Insurance paid for a custom CTI brace for me and i have to tell you i am not impressed it wont stay in place and the knee cup is a joke. After some research I picked up a set of Asterisk knee braces and have to tell you i am very impressed with them. They have alot of adjustability and the hinges are very smooth you don't feel any resistance while pedaling and the knee cup works just like they say it does. It would be worth your while to find a Motocross store that carries them and check them out. The only bad thing i can say about them is that they are hot... but if it keeps me off crutches its worth it.
    Last edited by Stripes; 02-16-2010 at 11:59 PM.

  14. #14
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    Comparing EVS to Asterisk to Pod the Pod is best. With all of these there will be some resistance when pedaling. That's why I don't use mine when biking.
    Keep the Country country.

  15. #15
    Uphill? What's that
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    For the Asterisk, does it keep your lateral motion fairly strong? I like their adjustability, but they look like they need to be custom fitted anyway. How well do they work for riding and not slipping? Are they pretty comfortable too?
    Any thoughts on the EVS web knee brace? The moto dude seemed really partial to that too.[/QUOTE]

    Lateral stability is very good with these. All adjustments are made with an allen wrench. The top and bottom cuffs actually form to the shape of your leg with a simple turn of a couple of allen keys. This adjustment along with the laces on the back of you legs instead of straps keep the braces from slipping mine do not move much at all. The hinges also have an adjustment screw to adjust the degree of angle that the hinges move to keep you from hyper extending your knee. EVS and POD knee braces are also good products, but they both would not stay put because of the ridgid frames they are constructed with, just like the CTI. If you have a chance, try all of them to see which would fit you the best. Just FYI i got mine at cycle gear., they have a no hassle return policy and i believe they carry all 3 brands. You can look them up online at cyclegear.com

  16. #16
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    Nothing will fit as well as a custom made brace.
    I have had multiple surguries on both knees including two ACL reconstructions, left and right knees. I ride MX and use a custom set of CTi2 MX braces. The braces are pretty comfortable and supportive. I do not wear these while riding my bicycles, but I could.
    For the best comfort and protection pursue the custom braces. Consider going with flat pedals instead of your clipless for freeride/DH.

  17. #17
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    I can't ride flat pedals. There is no float in them, and it hurts my knee to pedal them. I know there isn't a lot of pedaling on downhill riding, but I don't like the feel of having zero float right now in my 5.10s/flats right now. Also, that's the only way the doc says I can ride safely before the surgery is on high float clipless.

    Thanks for the braces suggestion. It looks like not many people ride in them, DH, XC, or DJ.

    I did get to see a DonJoy Armor the other day. Pretty nice looking brace.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grizzlyman
    Nothing will fit as well as a custom made brace.
    I have had multiple surguries on both knees including two ACL reconstructions, left and right knees. I ride MX and use a custom set of CTi2 MX braces. The braces are pretty comfortable and supportive. I do not wear these while riding my bicycles, but I could.
    For the best comfort and protection pursue the custom braces. Consider going with flat pedals instead of your clipless for freeride/DH.

  18. #18
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    i recently got 510 impacts and the last 2 rides my outer area of my knee has been hurting. I think it's because of the having no float. Im thinking of switching to clipless or less grippy shoes.

  19. #19
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    I destroyed my knee is a motorcycle accident. lucky I still have it, but I have had a solid brace ever since. Sometimes I forget I am wearing it, Its like i am the bionic man.. I need it for downhill for sure.

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