Why Do College Football Players Wear Knee Braces?

Knee braces are becoming much more common in college football, with many players swearing by them as being essential for game days.

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Why do college football players wear knee braces?

College football players wear knee braces because they are great for preventing injuries and supporting past injuries. While many college football players can wear knee braces, offensive linemen tend to use them more than any other position.

After extensively researching NCAA guidelines and regulations, I have gathered enough information to determine why college football players wear knee braces. 

In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at the benefits of wearing knee braces to manage and prevent injuries.

Which College Football Players Wear Knee Braces?

Nowadays, it’s not uncommon to see knee braces on college football players. This is a contact sport and players need to expect to get hit from time to time if they want to make it to college football. 

With that said, no player on the field deals with contact and impact more than offensive linemen. Injuries are the norm for a lot of offensive and defensive linemen, which is why they tend to be the most common players to wear knee braces.

Why Do College Football Players Wear Knee Braces

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Signing up for college football is no picnic. This is a demanding sport that can get very physical. To improve safety on the field football players wear protective equipment such as football knee pads and football helmets to ensure safety.

Knee braces are becoming a standard addition to the safety gear that football players wear during games, especially for the offensive line. 

Some argue that this is an unnecessary precautionary measure, but many players and experts believe that knee braces are an essential part of their performance.

Injury Prevention 

The bottom line is that injuries are very common in football, and a knee injury can ruin your entire season and potentially your career in the sport. 

Sometimes the best way to deal with injuries is to prevent them from happening in the first place. Many college football players, such as linemen, wear knee braces every time they get on the field. 

In this sport, you can get hurt when you least expect it, and being prepared is the best way to mitigate or eliminate risks. 

College football players who wear knee braces say they feel much more secure playing the game and can confidently deliver their full performance without having to worry about getting injured.

Injury Recovery 

Like it or not, injuries happen in football, even when safety gear is worn. Players who are recovering from a past knee injury need to take extreme caution to protect themselves when entering the field. 

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Torn ligaments and ACLs are not a fun thing to experience. These kinds of injuries can make or break a player’s performance indefinitely, preventing them from ever playing college football again. 

However, committed athletes look for any way to continue playing their favorite sport. This generally requires extensive physical therapy and additional protection, which is where knee braces come in. 

Recovery needs to be approached carefully to ensure that injury heals properly. This can require wearing a knee brace for a season or even more.

With that said, serious knee injuries that require surgery may require a knee brace to be worn for the extent of the player’s entire football career. 

How Do Knee Braces Help College Football Players?

A knee brace can make all the difference in how confidently a player feels and performs on the field. 

For extreme contact sports like football, players are subject to getting hit regularly, which can easily result in injury. Wearing knee braces when playing college football, helps players with stability and impact support.


Maintaining stability as an offensive lineman is an essential role of their position. Linemen need to either hold the line or break through it. This can be very taxing on the body and many players feel that wearing a knee brace improves their stability. 

Naturally, this helps them with performance but it also enables them to hold their ground without damaging their knees. This can become critical during awkward falls and when getting rolled on.

Impact Support 

Getting hit is part of a football player’s daily routine. With this kind of constant physical impact, you can expect injuries to be a regular occurrence. 

Knee braces offer support during impact so that players can avoid getting hurt. As an offensive or defensive lineman who deals with this kind of impact more than anyone else on the field, knee braces are great for support in these situations.

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Are Knee Braces Required to Play College Football?

No, knee braces are not required in College football. The NCAA has specific guidelines for equipment and safety protocols, with knee braces never being mentioned as necessary to play the game. 

Many colleges have the budget to bankroll additional gear, which is why some teams offer their players knee braces if they want to use them. Again, the most common players that would even consider using knee braces in the sport are offensive linemen. 

However, even linemen are not required to wear knee braces or other types of additional gear such as elbow braces, despite the level of contact they have to endure. Ultimately, a knee brace may be beneficial to some players, and a hindrance to others. 

The most important thing that football players need to do is safely perform on the field. If a knee brace interferes with performance and does not immediately improve the safety of the player, it makes sense for it to be an optional piece of equipment. 

Do NFL Players Wear Knee Braces?

Yes, some NFL players wear knee braces. Much like with college football, NFL linemen are the most common position to wear knee braces because they offer support and stability, which can prevent injury.

A lot of NFL teams actually require their players to use knee braces during practice. As professional athletes, there is a lot at stake for players to perform optimally during gameday, with injuries during training camps and practices being a major issue.

Although some players like to wear knee braces every time they play, a lot of NFL athletes prefer to take off the brace on gameday. 

Key Takeaways

  • College football players wear knee braces because they are great for preventing injuries, as well as supporting past injuries. 
  • Offensive linemen are the most common college football players to wear knee braces.
  • Knee braces help college football players by offering additional stability and impact support.

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