How IMBRACE supports your Walking & Hiking

Our knees endure a significant stress walking up and down hills over uneven ground. This is why knee pain is common among keen walkers and ramblers.

For many people, this pain occurs around or behind the kneecaps and can also cause stiffness. This type of pain typically worsens while walking downhill or up stairs because of the excessive pressure you put on your knees in these situations. Research suggests the force through your knee joint is up to eight times your body weight when going downhill!

How can IMBRACE help?

  • The built-in neoprene knee braces help protect your knees by supporting them and keeping them warm.

  • The panels that that run up the thighs support your IT Bands and help to reduce tightness in your hips, giving improved hip rotation when walking.

  • The panel across the lower back – keeps muscles warm, and helps with your alignment and posture.
  • Reduces fatigue and stiffness during your walk
  • Helps recovery after a long day on the trail.

These are some of the most common causes of knee pain experienced by walkers and hiking.

  • Bursitis – If your knee feels warm, tender, and swollen, you may be experiencing bursitis. This pain typically occurs on the inner side of your knee below the joint.
  • Knee tendinitis – Sharp, shooting pain and tenderness above or below your kneecap may be an indication of tendinitis. You may also have swelling and a burning feeling in your kneecap.
  • Meniscus Damage – If you hear or feel a popping sensation in your knee while walking, it’s possible that you’ve experienced a meniscus tear. Each knee has two menisci, pieces of cartilage that cushion your shin and thigh-bone. If torn, you’ll experience swelling and stiffness, along with a sharp pain when twisting or rotating your knee.
  • ACL damage – One of the most commonly injured ligaments in the knee is the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). An ACL injury tear or sprain can take place because of sudden stops or changes in the direction you’re moving, as well as excessive flexing of the ankle.

Signs and symptoms include:

  • Rapid swelling
  • Severe pain
  • Loss of range of motion
  • A “popping” sensation
  • Instability while putting weight on your knee
  • Iliotibial band (ITB) syndrome – The ITB is a thick band of tissue that connects muscles to other structures in the lower body. It runs from the hip region all the way down to the back of the knee. IT band syndrome, is a condition in which this tissue becomes inflamed, tight, or swollen. Pain will typically present on the outside of your knee and can spread up the thigh to the hip.
  • Knee osteoarthritis – we can’t stop ageing. Overuse in older individuals can lead to osteoarthritis. This condition is the progressive degeneration, or loss, of cartilage from a joint over time.

How can I reduce pressure on my knees and joints?

As with any injury or medical condition, prevention is your best line of defence.

Try these simple steps for preventing pain:

  • Choose supportive footwear:Hiking involves uneven terrain, rocks, and other obstacles. Using supportive and comfortable hiking boots is essential. They should fit properly and offer plenty of cushion to relieve excess pressure on your joints.
  • Stretch before you start your walk:Start your walk or hike with a stretching routine that warms up your muscles.  Loosen up the muscles and joints with long, slow stretches that promote elasticity.
  • Reduce the weight of your gear:A heavy backpack puts unnecessary strain on your knees. Think about what you really need before each hike. While essentials like sunscreen and water are important, find ways to lighten your load. Instead of water bottles, try a lightweight water pouch.
  • Invest in support garments:Get knee, ITB and back support from IMBRACE. They will restrict or stabilise joint movement to give you stability and reduce fatigue and discomfort.
  • Get walking poles:There is research to suggest that hiking poles are effective in redistributing some of the pressure you feel in your knees. Especially while hiking downhill, hiking poles can allow your arms and shoulders to absorb some of the impact. They also serve as an added layer of protection from falls that could cause serious injury.
  • Take your time:Enjoy your walkingtake it slow and steady. Going too fast will only put additional strain and pressure on your knees. Try carefully side-stepping when you’re trying to navigate steep downhill areas. This will help shorten and soften your steps and reduce pressure through the knee joint.
photo of a group of walkers and dogs

How does IMBRACE protect you?

IMBRACE Dynamic targeted compression leggings  offer higher levels of support and protection than standard compression leggings or tights to combat sore and unstable knees.

No other legging provides higher levels of user protection via integrated neoprene knee braces.

Advanced fabric technology combines three layers to create the best compression and support leggings available.

The antibacterial base layer is sweat wicking and soft next to your skin.

The middle layer is a 2mm perforated high-grade neoprene that provides the targeted pressure and joint protection.  The outer layer is a compression mesh that allows the protective panels to stretch and breath without losing shape or compression.

Support and Protect your joints with IMBRACE!

Illustration of leggings construction with knee brace

Compression leggings and support tights are backed by extensive research and testing. They are often prescribed by GPs and are recognised by athletes and physicians to reduce pain, improve performance, and aid recovery.

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