To wear or not to wear that isn’t the question. We are talking about wrist guards, which are a must when you are skating and snowboarding.
Therefore, it is crucial for you to protect your wrists at all costs, even if there is some restriction in movement. Also, some might wonder, do wrist guards protect against fractures on the upper arm? The answer is no!
They only protect the wrist as they are supposed to. Moreover, there is little obscure evidence that the wrist guard sends the fractures up the arm. So, is it worth it? Let’s find out!
How Do Wrist Guards Protect From Injury?
Engineers molded the wrist guard in such a way that it fits all-size hands. They hug the hands and wrist for complete protection.
However, Wrist guards and braces shouldn’t be compared. Wrist braces are for medical purposes and are used for the healing process of the wrist.
Wrist guards have a special thick plastic that acts as a shock absorbent when you fall. When skating or snowboarding, there is a higher chance of falling on your face.
In this type of sports, for example, inline skating, skateboarding, and snowboarding, forward fall is common.
As the body has its reflexes, it tends to put the arms first to stop the fall. This creates a great impact on the wrists and arms. However, the wrists take most of the impact. This creates weight overload on the wrists.
The wrists then bend too much backward and break. Wrist guards prevent this from happening by stopping them from bending backward too much.
There is a back splint that helps with that. It is also made of hard plastic. So, if you fall, there is no fracture of the bones.
The splint on the palm of the gloves has a little convex shape to it. The reason for that is to minimize the impact on the wrists.
When you accelerate and then suddenly hit the break, you are most likely to crash on the face. To compensate for that, your body puts the hands forward.
When the wrist guards hit the floor, the front splints create a sliding motion. This minimizes the vertical impact on the arms.
The sliding puts less weight on the arms. Thus, there are no fractures. There might be bruises on the hands, but the major damages are prevented.
How Effective Are Wrist Guards?
There is no doubt that wrist guards will protect you from injuries. Depending on the severity of the situation, the effectiveness may vary.
However, it surely will mitigate the damage that would have taken place. It will surely minimize the amount of injury that ought to happen if you take no safety measures.
In most cases, the wrist guard prevents major damages to the bones and the joint as there is no device that is 100% effective because there are different kinds of situations when we perform sports.
Thus, you might wonder, can you break your wrist while wearing wrist guards? There may be a slim chance that it may occur. But the fall has to be from a great height to do so.
There is another type of wrist guard that has no splint at the back. This is kind of a trade-off for more wrist movement. Here you lose the protection by half.
If the fall is severe, both the splints keep the wrist alignment straight. But for the ease of movement, some prefer only one-sided protection.
Some wrist guards are not guards at all. They may be called wrist bands. These don’t have any plastic protectors. They might not be as effective as the real thing. But it is better to wear something than nothing.
In short, no matter how severe the fall, wrist guards will minimize its impact.
How To Minimize Injuries?
There are some ways you can minimize the damage when you fall on the ground. Injuries vary from bruises, sprains to fractures and dislocation.
Doctors suggest that you mustn’t try to catch yourself when you fall. Rather stretch arms out to make a sliding motion.
There is another way that needs a little bit of practice. The beginners should try to master this falling method.
When you get the instinct that you will fall, try to fall on the fleshy parts of the body. This prevents fractures of the wrists effectively.
The only drawback of the wrist guards is that they might be restricting. It means they might restrict the wrist movement at some angles. However, it is better to protect the wrists than to have a fractured wrist.
If you are a beginner, then the wrist guard is a must. Also, the older you get, the more susceptible you are to injure yourself.
As you age, the healing process takes more time. It is better to take protective measures rather than sitting back for months or maybe years.
Rather ask which ones prevent fracture best than do wrist guards prevent fractures. A beginner or advanced level skater should wear wrist guards and other safety gear when doing sports.