When we were developing the Ultra CTS® acute injury brace we were really astounded at the level of comfort and stability you can achieve by compressing the Tibia and Fibula together, especially with syndesmotic injuries. However the key was to provide stable compression up to 8 inches above the malleolus. Tape alone could not provide the structural integrity necessary to stabilize the lower leg and ease pain. Most rigid plastic ankle braces were too low on the leg to provide enough compression, plus they were so rigid making them uncomfortable. This data lead us to develop the first PerformaFit® detachable shell technology that provided significant Tib/Fib compression and stabilization, easing weight bearing pain, promoting early activity after injury.
The key to this dual upright PerformaFit® technology of the Ultra CTS® is the Performathane® soft shell we developed for the Ultra Zoom®. This firm, but flexible shell was perfect for providing both comfort and compression to the lower leg. The characteristics of the soft shell allow the upright to be closer to the skin as well as tighter on the leg. These two features of the technology is what provides the necessary Tib/Fib compression which reduces stress on the injured soft tissue.
Being able to provide lower leg compression and stabilization is a key feature in getting athletes or patients back on their feet quickly, however there is a second feature the Ultra CTS® has that is just as important. Although the upright of the Ultra CTS® is made with our Performathane® soft shell, the heel section of the brace is made with a more rigid plastic. This semi-rigid heel section helps absorb the weight bearing impact that causes weight bearing pain. We call this “Ankle Unloading.” If you want a quick return to activity after acute ankle injury, you must unload the ankle to reduce weight bearing pain. The Ultra CTS® is designed to do just that while providing the necessary Tib/Fib compression and stabilization to protect and heal the acute ankle injury.
Written by Rick Peters
Rick Peters is a Certified Athletic Trainer who has been advancing ankle bracing technology for three decades. Peters patented his first ankle brace in 1985, revolutionizing the industry by adding a hinge to traditional stirrup braces for greater mobility. In 1989 he was a founder and became President of Active Ankle Systems. In 1998 he co-founded Ultra Athlete LLC to develop the next generation of ankle bracing technology. Peters has 18 ankle brace patents and is considered an authority on ankle bracing technology worldwide.