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5 Best Foot Drop Braces

5 Best Foot Drop Braces
Sailaxmi Chennuru

Also known as an ankle-foot orthosis (AFO), a foot drop brace is a medical device designed to help people who suffer from a condition called “foot drop or “drop foot.” Typically worn on the lower leg, the drop foot brace keeps the ankle and foot from inverting and dropping and helps individuals to walk more naturally. 

Foot drop makes it difficult to raise the front portion of the foot, a movement known as dorsiflexion. This condition can cause the foot to “drop” or drag while walking and increases the risk of trips and falls

Those who suffer from drop foot often exhibit a high steppage gait pattern, raising the thigh excessively when walking as though climbing stairs to allow their foot to clear the ground. Some individuals choose to swing their affected leg out to the side with every step to avoid dragging their toes. However, these walking patterns do not address the actual cause of foot drop but rather cause further complications, such as chronic pain, numbness, and fatigue.

Drop foot can result from conditions such as stroke, spinal cord injury, multiple sclerosis accessories, muscular dystrophy, or lower leg nerve injury. Drop foot can be temporary or permanent and can affect one or both feet.

How does a Drop Foot Brace help correct poor walking gait?

For people with foot drop, walking tends to be a little tricky. So, doctors and therapists often recommend wearing an AFO brace to make walking easier and safer.

An AFO brace supports the ankle and keeps the foot in its natural position with toes aligned with the rest of the foot, rather than allowing them to drag. This helps prevent the development of abnormal gait patterns and increases safety when walking.

AFO braces allow those suffering from foot drop to enjoy the activities they love and significantly improve their quality of life. We strongly recommend consulting your doctor before choosing an AFO brace suitable for your needs. 

5 Best Braces for Foot Drop

1. Optec Solid Ankle AFO Brace

FSA Approved

Available for both men and women in 4 sizes plus a wide range of shoe sizes, this prefabricated polypropylene ankle foot orthosis is designed to support foot drop.  It has a flexible footplate that is easy to trim and a padded hook-and-loop strap to secure it around the calf.

The Optec AFO Brace is designed for

Optec Solid Ankle AFO Brace



2. Alimed Freedom Swedish AFO

FSA Approved

Designed to address stability issues this foot drop brace provides increased ankle support and joint stability to minimize the risk of stumbles and falls. The AFO can fit into any shoe due to its low arch and open-heel design. Also, the footplate can be customized with a standard pair of scissors. The brace is fastened around the calf with a padded Velcro strap.

Why choose Alimed Swedish AFO?

Features of Alimed Freedom Swedish Drop Foot Brace

  • Easy to wear.
  • Lightweight and flexible.
  • Discreet design.
  • Easily trimmable for comfort.
  • Padded hook and strap for fastening.
  • Available in left or right, men's and women's sizes, and black or white. 
Alimed Freedom Swedish AFO



3. Ossur Rebound Foot-Up For Drop Foot

FSA Approved

A simple yet effective device that ensures the foot does not drop by gently pulling the foot upward when walking. This drop foot brace can be worn with all kinds of footwear or even barefoot. The ankle wrap is reinforced with a three-layered structure for durability.

Why choose Ossur Foot Drop Brace?

  • Lightweight, streamlined, and invisible when worn.
  • Offers dynamic support for drop-foot or related disorders requiring dorsiflexion support.
  • Allows for voluntary plantar flexion.
  • The smart clamp makes it easy to put on and take off with one hand.
  • Made from a comfortable, breathable material that helps maintain skin integrity and does not cause irritation when worn for long periods.
  • Adjustable cuff strap length.
  • Hand-washable.
Ossur Rebound Foot-Up For Drop Foot



4. FLA Orthopedics HealWell Soft Ease Multi-AFO Heel Suspender

FSA Approved

Designed to keep the foot in a suspended position and allows the heel to float in an air cavity. An integrated padded toe post protects the toes from contact with bed linens preventing skin breakdown

Fully adjustable straps accommodate changes in swelling and the super soft laminated foam material cushions the leg with extra padding at the sensitive Achilles area. This AFO brace can be used on both the right and left leg.

Benefits of FLA Orthopedics HealWell Soft AFO Brace

  • Eliminates pressure on the heels preventing the formation of ulcers. 
  • Aids in the treatment and healing of existing pressure sores.
  • Open toe and heel design help prevent heat and moisture build-up.
  • The super soft material wicks moisture away to keep skin dry and reduces friction.
  • Prevents Achilles contractures.
FLA Orthopedics HealWell Soft Ease Multi-AFO Heel Suspender



5. Complete Medical Lightweight Drop Foot Braces

FSA Approved

Recommended for mild to moderate foot drop, this brace supports and stabilizes the foot. The low arch and open heel give it a streamlined profile that fits easily into any shoe. Fabricated from a special orthopedic-grade thermoplastic that offers durability and long-term performance. For a customized fit, this AFO brace can be trimmed and reshaped using cast scissors and a heat gun.

Why choose Complete Medical Lightweight Foot Drop Brace?

  • Provides static dorsiflexion assistance and lateral stability for the entire ankle-foot area.
  • Anatomical design compensates for atrophy and avoids calcaneus irritation.
  • Provides optimal flexibility of toes.
  • Designed to fit into any standard shoe. 
  • A padded hook-and-loop strap provides a secure fit.
Complete Medical Lightweight Drop Foot Braces



How to choose the Best Foot Drop Brace?

Your doctor or physical therapist can guide you in choosing the right AFO brace for your specific condition. Here are some points to consider:

Style and design 

  • A solid AFO is perfect for patients who have unstable knees and loss of strength or motion. This AFO stops plantarflexion and dorsiflexion and helps stabilize the ankle and foot while walking. It can be a little bulkier but provides a superior amount of control.
  • Hinged AFO braces allow some ankle flexion. Posterior leaf spring AFO is ideal for patients with knee instability along with foot drop issues.
  • Material: AFO braces for foot drop are made from various materials, like nylon, neoprene, foam, and composite plastics. Nylon and neoprene are lightweight and provide more flexibility while foam braces offer better comfort. An AFO made of durable and comfortable material will last a long time and will not cause skin breakdown.
  • Custom-made or prefabricated: Custom-made drop foot braces fit your specific needs and body structure. Prefabricated options are appropriate for temporary foot drop conditions.
  • Discretion: Some AFOs can be discreetly worn inside the shoes to keep them hidden.
  • Breathability: AFO braces can trap heat and make ankles and feet hot and sweaty. For extended wearing time, choose one made of a breathable material to prevent heat build-up and skin damage.

Where to buy AFO Braces for Foot Drop?

HPFY is your one-stop shop for quality medical supplies and health products. We carry a vast selection of AFO braces from top manufacturers like Trulife, Ossur, Deroyal, and more. Visit our website to check out our complete line!



Disclaimer: All content found on our website, including images, videos, infographics, and text were created solely for informational purposes. Our reviewed content should never be used for the purpose of diagnosis or treatment of any medical conditions. Content shared on our websites is not meant to be used as a substitute for advice from a certified medical professional. Reliance on the information provided on our website as a basis for patient treatment is solely at your own risk. We urge all our customers to always consult a physician or a certified medical professional before trying or using a new medical product.

HPFY Sailaxmi Chennuru

Sailaxmi Chennuru

Sailaxmi Chennuru, has been a Health Products For You contributor since 2017. A business management graduate, the study of anatomy has always been of interest to her.

After working as a medical transcriptionist for several years, she developed a keen interest ...

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