Muay Thai requires a lot of footwork and impact on your lower legs. Ankle protectors are a simple yet crucial piece of gear for Muay Thai athletes who want to prevent injuries and increase stability on the mats. They’re suitable to wear during training or competition and really take the sting out of repetitive kicking. It’s important to find the right Muay Thai ankle guards to fit your preference, body shape and training needs. In this article, we will take a closer look at the Fairtex and Nationman ankle guards. Nationman only makes 1 style. For Fairtex, we will look at the AS1 model. Join us as we compare their size, shape, materials, prices, and aesthetic.
Muay Thai ankle guards look like a tube sock with the ankle and toes cut out. Much like socks, they stretch and can accommodate a wide range of foot sizes. So, it makes sense that both of these brands use a free size (“one size fits all” adults) for their ankle supports. There are several small differences between the two styles that will help you find the best fit.
How do Nationman & Fairtex Muay Thai Ankle Guards Size?
The general measurements for a Fairtex ankle guard straight out of the package are 26cm long, measuring 12 cm along the top opening of the sleeve and 9 cm along the bottom. The cut out that exposes the heel measures 4cm (measured from 1 side, laying flat) on the Fairtex model. Nationman ankle guards are 25cm tall, they measure 11 cm along the top of the ankle guard and 9 cm along the bottom. The heel cut out measures just over 3cm (measured from 1 side, laying flat) for the Nationman model.
So, in comparison, the Nationman ankle guards are slightly shorter and have a smaller opening for the heel. Looking at the shape, Fairtex ankle supports are slightly wider along the top of the sleeve, making them a more suitable choice for athletes with thicker ankles or calves. Straight out of the package, Nationman ankle guards look just like a tube with the heel cut out.
All of the observations and measurements are made from equipment taken right out of the package. These are rough guidelines only so please allow for slight differences with production. Also, please understand that this style of equipment will stretch with continued use and wear.
What type of fabric is used for Muay Thai ankle guards?
According to the packaging, Fairtex uses a blend of 35% acrylic, 35% nylon, and 30% elastic materials in their AS1 model. Nationman uses a similar blend of elasticated cotton material.
Both brands use the same grade of elastic at the top and bottom, so they will give the same level of stretch. Covering the elastic, both brands use a white color thread. Nationman is thicker and softer than the Fairtex material but the stitches are farther apart giving it a slightly scalloped knit look. Fairtex uses a thinner thread so it just looks like a solid, smooth white line at the top and bottom, outlining the heel hole.
Overall, the Fairtex ankle support feels a bit more supple and easier to bend. This may be a point of value if you have super sensitive skin. Nationman uses a thicker knit so it has a slightly coarser feel on the inside. It is less supple than the Fairtex fabric, but still gets the job done in terms of consistent compression.
Comparing Branding on Fairtex and Nationman Ankle Guards
Fairtex model uses a Fairtex screen print on either side of the ankle. You’ll see the brand name from either side on both feet. A pair of Fairtex AS1 ankle guards are priced at only $17USD.
Nationman uses their logo on the front of the sleeve. It is visible only on the front at the bottom of your shin. A bit easier on your bank account, Nationman ankle guards are only $12USD per pair.
Fairtex ankle guards are available in only 4 colors right now. Fairtex has black with blue trim, black with red trim, pink, or green. However, Nationman ankle supports come in a total of 10 bold colors. Nationman has black, blue, green, orange, pink, purple, red, turquoise, white, and yellow.
Both Fairtex and Nationman Muay Thai ankle guards provide consistent compression and protection for Muay Thai training. The slight size and shape differences discussed above can help you to find the right fit, beyond color options and price. As with most training gear, it’s got to work best for your body and needs. So, it ultimately comes down to your preference. We hope the comparisons we’ve made here help you to make the best choice for you. Please let us know in the comments if you have any additional questions about the Muay Thai ankle supports. We are always happy to provide any further details that can help you make a confident purchase.