Football is one of the toughest sports on the body, and knee related injuries are very common. The dynamic nature of the sport, coupled with sudden changes in direction put the knee at an increased risk of damage.
The most common forms of knee injuries for footballers are:
• Ligament tears of either the anterior cruciate ligament or the medial collateral ligament.
• Meniscus tears – generally caused by twisting the knee.
Each of these injuries can be serious enough to require surgery, or potentially end a footballer’s career. Once the knee has been initially damaged, recurring injuries are often the reason that footballers have to hang up their boots (see the two examples below). In order to protect the knee, and reduce the chances of cutting their playing days short, footballers can wear knee supports. These can help prevent knee injuries during matches and training, and also help with post injury recovery.
The Best Knee Supports for Football
There are several types of knee supports available that help protect the area. The most common type is a knee sleeve that is made up of fabric that stretches with the movement of the joint.
The sleeve provides support for the knee and decreases the chances of the knee buckling. The LP Knee Support Open Patella is one of our sleeves that is ideal for playing sports, as the open patella stops the kneecap from being put under too much pressure. Overuse is one of the key causes of knee injuries and the sleeve supports weak and overstressed knees.
LP Open Patella Knee Support / 708 - £13.50
Another type of knee sleeve is one that completely covers the knee. The LP Extreme Knee Support is recommended for runners and footballers, as the sleeve provides firm support, as well as heat retention on the knee joint. The sleeve is made from a material called Coolprene® which relieves pain, swelling and stiffness. This makes it ideal for post-match recovery and stability, as well as providing support during games.
An alternative to the knee sleeve is to wrap the knee in special tape. The advantage of knee wraps over sleeves is that you can adjust the tightness depending on how stable the knee needs to be.
This is useful during football matches, as it allows a player to make changes if the current support isn’t quite right. Our LP Max Wrap has a unique silicone backing which compresses the knee and ensures it doesn’t slip. Most wraps will be made up of strong, non-tear cohesive fabric that will be able to stabilise the knee through overlapped wrapping.
LP Knee Max Wrap - £15.99
Notable Footballers With Career Ending Knee Injuries
Below are two famous examples of how knee injuries can unfortunately end promising footballing careers.
Brazilian legend Ronaldo is still considered to be one the greatest footballers to have ever played the sport. During his illustrious career he played for Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid, and A.C. Milan. Yet it was on the world stage that Ronaldo made his name. He became one Brazil’s most influential players, and scored both goals in Brazil’s 2-0 win over Germany in the 2002 World Cup final.
Despite the heights that Ronaldo reached, his career was also blighted with injury. Ronaldo would suffer three serious knee injuries between 1999 and 2008. The most devastating injury for the player was in 2008. While playing for A.C. Milan, Ronaldo ruptured his kneecap ligament in his left knee for the third time. This caused him to miss the rest of the season and ultimately be released by the club. Three years later he would retire.
Jamie Redknapp was part of a group of players at Liverpool known as the Spice Boys (alongside Collymore, Fowler, McManaman, and McAteer). During his long career at Anfield (1991-2002) he made a total of 237 appearances and scored 30 goals. In 2000, at the age of 27, a persistent injury in Redknapp’s knee began to hinder his career. He was left out of England’s Euro 2000 campaign, and went to the United States for surgery. Despite receiving the required surgery, he was never able to return to the game at the same level. After short stints at Tottenham and Southampton, he was forced retired at the age of 32.
Exclusively written for LPSupports.com