This article has been fact-checked and reviewed for accuracy by Michael Ray Tillman, DPT, Cert. MDT, CSCS, who has a doctorate in physical therapy.
Disclaimer: We are not medical professionals. Content on this page should not be used as medical advice. Always see your doctor for proper advice and treatment of tennis elbow.
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If you experience elbow pain on or off the tennis court, you are not alone. Extensive tennis play or the prolonged use of your arm for a variety of activities has the potential to result in tennis elbow.
However, no two tennis elbow braces are exactly the same. The best tennis elbow brace for you might not be optimal for your doubles partner. This helpful guide sheds light on the best tennis elbow braces based on their functionality, comfort, durability, and overall value. Our goal is to help you find the right elbow brace for your needs.
What is Tennis Elbow and How Does a Brace Help?
Tennis elbow is a pain on the outside of the elbow caused by stress on the tendons of the elbow. This is typically due to overuse of the wrist and elbow. It is very common in tennis players from the backhand.
Tennis players can also get “golfer’s elbow.” Golfer’s elbow is similar, but results in pain on the inside of the elbow. This is usually caused from the forehand groundstroke.
Both tennis and golfer’s elbow can be treated with elbow braces.
The video below by Dr. J. Michael Bennett explains what tennis elbow is, and how to use a brace to help.
What Else Can I Do to Help My Tennis Elbow?
Work with your doctor for the most effective treatment of tennis elbow. A few other things you may want to consider.
Change your tennis strings. Even the best tennis strings can give you tennis elbow. Polyester strings are stiffer so switching to a synthetic string or playing with a looser string tension can help.
Change your tennis racquet. Some of the best tennis racquets are very stiff and don't have much forgiveness in the frame. Look for a tennis racquet that is more flexible and it will be easier on your arm.
Different Parts of Tennis Elbow Braces
There are a variety of different tennis elbow braces available on the market. To determine the best type for you, consult with your doctor.
Below are the different parts of the elbow brace that you should know.
The quality of the armband determines the brace’s flexibility, comfort, and durability. Elastic armbands wrap around the player’s forearm, slightly below the elbow. The armband should prove flexible enough to accommodate arm movement, yet secure enough to minimize joint stress leading to pain. Armbands can also help to reduce inflammation.
The Elbow Pad and Sleeve
The elbow pad should be carefully crafted for optimal comfort and compression. The padding is necessary to safeguard your elbow during intense play by providing support.
The best tennis elbow sleeves are made with elbow padding that keeps the elbow well-stabilized, ensuring there is minimal pain during the swinging motion.
Hinged Tennis Elbow Braces
Hinged elbow braces are perfect for those in need of support for a hyper-extended elbow.
This type of tennis elbow brace is designed with a bilateral hinge that facilitates the management of the elbow’s extension. It will prevent your elbow from overextending which can re-injure your elbow and cause longer term damage.
The Materials in a Tennis Elbow Brace
Tennis elbow braces are usually made from several different materials.
Neoprene is commonly used in the tennis elbow braces. Neoprene provides breathability along with moisture absorption. Neoprene also resists stretching making it a very durable material.
Nylon and Spandex
A blend of nylon and spandex is also quite common in the best tennis elbow braces. This combination of materials is optimal for lightweight support that allows for temperature regulation across extensive use. Nylon and spandex have unique fibers for moisture wicking that ensure the arm remains dry even during hot days on the tennis court.
Some tennis elbow braces are made of nylon mesh that helps regulate the player’s temperature. This material will remain flexible around the elbow joint while permitting airflow to guard against excessive warmth.
Some tennis elbow braces contain a silicone lining. This lining guards against slippage amidst intense play. Silicone lining grips tightly to the skin without creating discomfort. If you need a tennis elbow brace that provides additional joint support, silicone lining can help.
The Different Types of Tennis Elbow Braces
There are three primary types of tennis elbow braces:
- The sleeve elbow brace
- The strap elbow brace
- The dual support elbow brace
The sleeve provides lightweight support with easy slip-on application. This type of tennis elbow brace can easily be worn beneath your clothes without proving overly bulky or obtrusive.
Alternatively, the strap variety typically features one or two Velcro straps. This type of tennis elbow brace requires some extra effort to put onto the arm. However, strap-style tennis elbow braces provide even more support to protect the joint.
The straps are easy to adjust ensuring just the right fit for your unique arm size.
Opt for a dual-support tennis elbow brace for even more support. This type of brace has two distinct straps that connect on both sides of the elbow.
Dual-support braces ensure the tendons can rest and perform self-repair without being too restrictive so you can still play tennis. The design limits the player’s range of motion so you don’t re-injure your elbow and to ensure optimal comfort.
Reviews of the 9 Best Tennis Elbow Braces
Below we have reviewed all types of tennis elbow braces. Each brace below has been researched and reviewed so you can find the right brace for your elbow.
#1 - DashSport Tennis Elbow Brace
The DashSport Tennis Elbow Brace is our top-ranked tennis brace as it provides comprehensive support and elbow pain relief.
This well-built elbow brace is a compression sleeve and elbow brace combination suitable for tennis players and golfers alike. This means you get the benefits of both the sleeve and strap.
The copper elbow brace is partially made of nylon for optimal comfort and extra breathability. It also has a no-slip guard which helps secure the sleeve while you’re playing tennis. The brace has two straps that you can adjust, and target the area of pain. There is also a money back guarantee.
Type | Sleeve & Strap
Price | $$$
#2 - Tomight Tennis Elbow Brace
Tomight's elbow brace features a compression pad for optimal versatility on the court.
The brace is also highlighted by strong Velcro along with flawless seam work and stitching to support the entire space beneath the elbow. It actually has two Velcro straps that allow for loosening and tightening to each player's preferred comfort level.
The Tomight elbow brace uses wide neoprene to ensure your skin doesn’t get irritated from excessive rubbing. This tennis elbow brace comes in a two pack. The compression pad is wider than most which helps it cover the entire elbow. However this does sacrifice some more focused pain relief and tendon support.
Type | Strap
Price | $
#3 - Kunto Fitness Elbow Brace Compression Support Sleeve
The Kunto Fitness Elbow brace is a great sleeve-style brace for tennis elbow or tendonitis.
The brace's is designed with nylon, spandex, and rubber. The brace pressure applies an even amount of pressure across the entirety of the elbow joint, providing pain relief and reducing inflammation for tennis players. The sleeve is woven for a secure and non-slip fit.
Type | Sleeve
Price | $$
#4 - Simien Tennis Elbow Brace
The Simien tennis elbow brace is a strap style brace designed to provide support and pain relief.
This elbow brace is made of nylon and neoprene with a natural rubber logo on the outside. Designed with a compression gel style pad, this brace will last longer and out perform braces with air pads. The brace has two Velcro straps, and comes in a two pack along with a sweatband for your wrist. The manufacturer offers a money back guarantee.
Style | Strap
Price | $$
#5 - Bodyprox Elbow Brace
Bodyprox’s tennis elbow brace is a slightly more budget-friendly, strap-style brace.
Though the padding on this brace is slightly smaller, it provides good support for mild tennis elbow pain. It has one adjustable Velcro strap that may need tightening while you play. The brace is made of EVA, nylon, spandex, and rubber. This combination provides optimal breathability, comfort, and durability. This brace comes in a two pack helping tendonitis and tennis elbow on both the left and right arms.
Style | Strap
Price | $
#6 - SS Sleeve Stars Elbow Support
This elbow brace from SS Sleeve Stars helps support the forearm to prevent further tendon damage.
The latex free brace works for arm sizes from 9 to 23 inches. It is designed with two fully adjustable hook/loop straps that stick at any point along the brace for secure positioning. The material is a combination of nylon and neoprene, helping it absorb sweat to keep your arm dry. This brace is also FDA approved.
Style | Strap
Price | $
#7 - Mueller Adjustable Elbow Support
This Mueller elbow brace provides full elbow support and can help prevent hyperextension.
This style brace is closer to a sleeve, with two adjustable straps providing a comfy fit. Furthermore, the brace's unique design allows for considerable flexibility. You can adjust it to your desired level of tightness. The brace is made of neoprene and a HydraMesh fabric that helps manage moisture. It also comes with an antimicrobial treatment to minimize odor. This brace fits elbows from 7 to 14 inches in circumference.
Style | Full Brace
Price | $$
#8 - ACE Tennis Elbow Support
The ACE Tennis brace has a simple and effective design.
Unlike many of the straps above, this one comes with an air pouch to provide targeted pressure. This typically makes it more effective for acute pain, but not as long-lasting since it can lose pressure over time. It is made of breathable materials that will keep your forearm cool. The brace comes with one adjustable strap for a custom, secure fit. The size will fit most people.
Style | Strap
Price | $
#9 - POWERLIX Elbow Brace Compression Support
This Powerlix compression elbow brace provides steady pressure throughout the entirety of the elbow joint to help you play tennis with minimal pain.
Whether you are plagued by tennis elbow, joint inflammation, or tendonitis, this sleeve can help you get back on the court without discomfort. The sleeve comes in 4 different sizes and is made of high-quality, odor resistant materials. This sleeve helps with inflammation and stays cool in hot weather while helping maintain blood circulation.
Style | Sleeve
Price | $$$
Conclusion: Our Pick for the #1 Tennis Elbow Brace
After reviewing many of the top tennis elbow braces on the market, we have found these to be the 9 best. It’s important to consult your doctor for injuries and professional treatment, but these braces can help alleviate pain, support tendonitis, and prevent further injury.
Our pick for the best overall tennis elbow brace is the DashSport Tennis Elbow Brace. This is because it comes with both a sleeve to help reduce inflammation, and a strap to help support the specific tendons for tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow.
Keep in mind, none of these braces will fix or heal your injury, so be smart about playing tennis while injured. The best advice is to consult with your doctor who may require you take time off from the sport, then use a tennis elbow brace once you do start playing again.