Because horses aren’t the only accident/injury-prone numskulls at the barn.
The other day, I came across this meme that got me right in the feels. It just really spoke to my experience as a horsewoman and aspiring amateur athlete in my thirties.
The really sad part is that I know a lot of equestrians for whom this meme is true when they’re 20. It’s just a sport that wears on so many parts of you by the very nature of the discipline, and also presents its fair share of accidents.
In my case, my left knee has been bothering me the better part of a decade. I’m fairly certain it started with an innocuous, every-day dismount where I landed less than gracefully (SURPRISE SURPRISE) and proceeded to ignore that little tweak in my knee for the next several weeks. Now every once in awhile, it finds a way to flare back up on the regular.
While Jumper Nation is on its spectacular upward trajectory in the horse world, I’ve taken a break from my own showing ambitions to cover other people’s, and have traded my barn workouts for triathlon training. That’s all fine and good except for my dumb knee.
It’s fine, guys. No really.
Swimming? No problem. Running, surprisingly, has not been terribly rough on it. But something about the biking portion of my training has been particularly hard on that old injury. It’s never enough to stop, just enough to make me a little miserable after the first 5-6 miles.
Enter the Draper Body Therapy Knee Support. If the technology is everything they say it is and more for my horse, it’s probably worth trying on myself, right?
Here’s a few of the things that pushed me to order one:
- The FDA says it really works: The FDA recently approved products using Celliant Technology as legit medical devices, which practically never happens. Many medical studies were done and hoops jumped through to prove this stuff, and that goes a long way with me. (You can read more about the technology here.)
- The design is super slim, noninvasive, and low profile: easy to hide under breeches or jeans, and a nice muted color if you’re rocking them with shorts.
- It works on either knee. Which is helpful, since sometimes my “good knee” is really just my “not as bad as the other knee” knee.
- Multiple uses: Sometimes I wear it when I’m biking for the extra support and protection, and sometimes I wear it after I run or bike to help me recover. It works incredibly well for both purposes
- It’s breathable: None of that horrible hot neoprene and velcro straps nonsense that makes you hot and sweaty and claustrophobic and miserable.
My brace arrived and I immediately tested it out. I wore it around the house in my current tweaked knee state and after about 90 minutes of wear, was genuinely weirded out that my tweak was not as noticeable. The increased circulation seemed to have brought down my inflammation, and the mild support from the brace was just enough to take some of the stress off the pained area.
The next day I wore it during a 10+ mile bike ride and not only did my knee NOT HURT at the end, but the brace had stayed in place perfectly. No readjustments needed, which is more than I can say for my bike shorts, sports bra, helmet, etc. I feel quite confident it would work just as well under breeches.
I have been slipping the brace on for about 45 minutes to an hour for the past two weeks while I work, and I simply can’t deny it: My tweak is just gone. Obviously, the brace isn’t going to magically heal a torn ACL or a legitimate sprain, but for my little aches and pains, it was a miracle worker.
Best of all, for being an FDA-approved medical device, it’s shockingly affordable: The knee support is currently priced at $36.00. FOR REAL. I have paid twice as much for bulky braces that did half as much to help me.
A word on sizing: In the words of my cinematic spirit animal, Natalie from Love Actually, I’ve got legs like tree trunks. I just carry a lot of my weight there. It’s okay, I’m at peace with it. But in the case of knee support shopping, I probably should have considered the next size up – their measuring advice is dead on, and I blatantly ignored it because I’m normally a large in everything. That being said, it’s got a sufficient amount of stretch in it that the large is still plenty useful.
Draper offers a bunch of body support options: ankles, back, elbows, and a slew of multipurpose options like the shoulder wrap and body wrap. See their full line of products for people, ponies, and pups at the link below.