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Five ways women can prevent summer injuries

July 19, 2010
(ARA) July 19, 2010 - Women’s bodies are built differently than men’s bodies. This means that women’s shoes, pants and even women’s socks are constructed to fit women’s unique proportions. However, when it comes to braces and supports, women have classically been forced to make do with equipment made to fit men.

For women, men-centric equipment can be both uncomfortable and ineffective, and can fail to deliver the necessary support that women need. Additionally, braces and supports meant for men can be bulky and unflattering. Many women choose to go without rather than use braces and supports that don’t fit correctly.

Companies such as Wellgate for Women are leading the fight to make women-specific ankle, knee and wrist supports available. A variety of knee supports are now designed specifically for women. Because they are made for women, not only do they fit better, but they are also more comfortable and flattering to a woman’s body.

For instance, Wellgate’s Slimfit Ankle Support is designed to easily slip into a woman’s shoe. There are no seams protruding under the foot and no bunching in the elastic support around the ankle itself, making them perfect for high heels. Wellgate’s lineup even includes the only knee brace made to fit plus-sized women -- the Wellgate UltraLite Knee Support.

Megan Barclay, a New York City physical therapist, offers five ways women can help prevent injury this summer:

  1. Brace your ankles to prevent sprains. Ankle sprains occur when a ligament is stretched or torn. Women are more susceptible to ankle injuries, as they have narrower feet than men, and their heels – in particular – are narrower compared to the front of the foot. Women who favor high-heeled shoes must be especially careful: The higher the heel, the more unstable the ankle is likely to be.
  2. Support your knees when you go running, dancing, waterskiing or even just walking around. Women are up to four times more likely to suffer tears of the anterior cruciate ligament in their knees.
  3. Use protection when typing, texting, tweeting or playing video games. Women are three times more likely to develop carpal tunnel syndrome than men. The modern age is full of repetitive wrist activities that can certainly add up over time. Using a wrist brace at work or at home can help keep pressure off your wrists and let you stay in touch and reduce the risk of injury.
  4. Use a support that fits, especially if you suffer from arthritis or other joint problems. Women are 41 percent more likely than men to suffer from arthritis, in addition to many other muscle and joint problems as they age. Physical therapy and exercise help to alleviate arthritis symptoms, and a brace that fits the contours of the female body helps women to exercise more safely.
  5. Get gear made for women. Why use equipment made for men when women’s equipment is so readily available? Braces and supports made for women are as close as your local Walmart. Properly proportioned equipment can make a huge difference. For instance, women’s hips are on average much wider than men’s hips and women simply have different proportions all around. Make sure to wear apparel and equipment that takes this into consideration. Men would certainly never wear equipment built for women, so why would you use equipment made for men?
“Women may have different needs than men, but they have the same demands when it comes to quality, durability, and strength in their equipment,” says Barclay. “Women never stop moving, and they need braces and supports that never stop supporting them.”

For more information on products that specifically support women, visit

Courtesy of ARAcontent


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