Best Joint Support Supplements For Athletes [Updated 2024]

by Nader Qudimat
Updated December 21, 2023

Can you hear that?

It's the sound of your joints creaking and groaning as you type into Google, searching for the best joint supplements for bodybuilding.

You'd think by now, with all the advancements in science and nutrition, we'd have a clear-cut answer on what works and what doesn't, right?

WellnessSeries Joint Support by Transparent Labs

Another reputable company, Transparent Labs creates quality supplements with clinically dosed ingredients and well thought out formula's.

With 4 highly bioavailable ingredients, it'll help reduce inflammation and promote healing within joints.

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Elbow Grease Joint Support by Axe & Sledge

Axe & Sledge's Elbow GreasE is a complete repair and restore formula, designed to provide optimal joint health for the hardest workers in the gym, thanks to its blend of clinically studied ingredients.

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Well, we do have a pretty good idea.

But the supplement industry, like any other, is always buzzing with the promise of "the next big thing".

And let's be honest, that can be pretty confusing for folks like us.

(Related: best multivitamins for bodybuilding)

But don't worry. There's a silver lining.

There's solid research backing certain joint support supplements that have been shown to improve joint health.

Yes, you heard that right.

Real, scientifically-backed solutions to help you keep lifting without that nagging joint pain.

So, let's dive right in and explore the best joint supplements for bodybuilding...

Best Joint Supplements for Athletes


Tumeric+ by Revive MD


Supplement companies have a common approach when it comes to solutions, which is usually a quick fix like fat loss or muscle gain.

However Revive MD has broken into a niche where they provide long term fixes instead of focusing on the quick solution.

This is Turmeric +, a tissue repair and gut health supplement.

Not only does reduce inflammation all over the body, including muscles and joints, but it can support gut health, thanks to the 250mg of ginger (standardized to 5% gingerols).

Ginger can also reduce pain and soreness in muscles.

The first ingredient however is the reason why this is called Turmeric +.

It's Curcumin C3 complex, and it contains 400mg turmeric extract standardized to 95% curcuminoids.

Curcumin can reduce inflammation through multiple angles.

It's one of the best ingredients for decreasing inflammation, and it's in the best and most bioavailable form, Curcumin C3, which is a trademarked form by Sabinsa Corporation.

To help with blood sugar, Revive MD uses 100mg R-Alpha Lipoic Acid, and when it's combined with ginger, it works even better.

It can help reduce inflammation, blood sugar and improve insulin.

And to further help absorption of all the ingredients, Bioperine is added and this ingredient can increase bioavailability of curcumin by 2000% (study).

Revive MD has really assembled a tried and true formula for not only decreasing inflammation but also improving blood sugar, insulin and overall health.

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Strengthens and improves joint health
Supports joint and gut health
Reduces inflammation

WellnessSeries Joint Support by Transparent Labs


Transparent Labs is one company that has successfully blew up with popularity for producing high quality and, well, transparent labelled supplements.

Joint Support WellnessSeries is one of the newer supplements to come from TL and it's packed with the patented ingredients.

It has 4 highly bioavailable ingredients that are going to help reduce inflammation and repair common issues that comes with the build up of damage that we tend to put on our joints.

Joint Support supplement includes curcumin, calcium Fructoborate, Boswellin Super and UC-II.

Now we know tumeric on it's own doesn't have great absorption.

But when it's in the form of curcumin, then it becomes highly bioavailable. Especially when it's in a patented form like Curcumin C3, which is standardized to 95% curcuminoids.

There's a big 500mg dose of it here, and it can keep joint pain at bay as it can reduce inflammation, while improving physical movement.

Joint support containing this form of curcumin is certainly going to be a game change for pain reduction and improving overall performance.

Fruite-X is a varient of calcium fructoborate and it's made by combining boric acid with fructose and calcium carbonate.

This ingredient, like curcumin, can reduce joint pain, and as a bonus, it can also reduce brain fog.

It's essential for bone and joint health.

Boswellia Super is a trademarked ingredient of boswellin and it's basically a powerhouse of the extract.

And like the first two ingredients it can reduce pain and inflammation in the joint.

Now we get to the meat of Joint Support.

UC-II is a collagen extract, and collagen is important because the body is full of collagen, especially in the joint tissues.

With collagen, the body can repair and improve the connective tissue between joints.

This specific form of collage is UC-II and it's been used in various studies and the research shows that it can improve mobility and reduce pain.

The dose here is plenty, as it's in line with what the studies have used.

To maximize absorption and bioavailability, it also has BioPerine, which can increase abosroption of ingredients it's taken with by up to 2,000%!

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Reduces joint pain
Research backed formula
Enhances joint mobility

Elbow Grease by Axe & Sledge


Axe & Sledge has seemingly popped out of no where with the highest standard of top tier formulas and an excellent reputation to back it up with. 

The founder is Seth Feroce and he's a IFBB pro who has a great personality and the work ethics of a hard but smart worker. 

And that's who his supplements are for. 

While you don't need to be a professional athlete to benefit from his supplements, his company formulates high quality formulas that anyone would benefit from. 

Elbow Grease is their joint support supplement and it covers all aspects of joint health, from pain reduction to joint strengthening. 

Starting with a full dose of glucosamine, at 1.5g, this ingredient helps reduce pain and improve physical movement without any risk of side effects. 

Coming up next is chondroitin, another pain reducer for joint pain. 

The next ingredient, Cetyl Myristoleate Complex (CMO), is packed with benefits as it has the ability to prevent joint damage, decrease inflammation, and reduce pain associated with joints. 

In fact, CMO works well. In various studies, it's found to help reduce pain for people with mild arthritic symptoms.

The dose here is exactly what the studies used too of 300mg.

Now we have the pain and physical improvement ingredients out of the way, Elbow Grease wouldn't be complete with some collagen. 

Of course it's using a high quality patented ingredient, BioCell Collagen.

BioCell contains natural type II collagen peptides, as well as chondroitin sulfate and hyaluronic acid. 

This will help improve mobility, reduce pain while improving recovery and more. 

Collagen is important as it can enhance the health of ligaments, joints, tendons and bones.

The rest of the formula has basic vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, zinc, vitamin D3, and manganese.

Manganese is highly bioavailable and this is important for joint health.

It can improve bone mass density, joint connective tissue and it can also improve immune function.

Zinc and vitamin c are also important because being deficient with these ingredients are typically associated with the risk of rheumatoid arthritis. 

Elbow Grease is certainly made for the hardest worker in the room with it's highly bioavailable ingredient list.

For the money, this is certainly one of the best joint support supplements you can get. 

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Made for hard working athletes and lifters
Contains highly bioavailable ingredients
Contains highly bioavailable ingredients

Cyborg by Alpha Lion


Alpha Lion is one of the best brands that the supplement industry has seen in recent years. 

Their branding is flashy, but most importantly, the formulas contain patented ingredients and are made for the hardcore while remaining competitively priced. 

Cyborg is loaded with the most potent joint supporting compounds. 

All of the ingredients work in synergy and it remains unmatched by most joint supplements we've seen. 

Every 6 capsules contains glucosamine, chondroitin, Opti-MSM, CurcuWIN, UC-11 and BioPerine. 

The first ingredient, glucosamine is dosed at a full 1.5g and it is a natural compound found in the tissue and cartilage of joints. 

The benefits range from reducing inflammation to preventing collagen degradation and joint pain. 

Collagen is the vital part of healthy and strong joints but it can be broken down after becoming damaged. 

To help maintain collagen from breaking down, glucosamine will prevent it from degrading. 

Sulfate is the most bioavailable form which is what Cyborg is using.

Similarly, chondroitin functions the same way in that it can prevent the breakdown of collagen between joints and it actually works in synergy with glucosamine. 

The next ingredient is backed with plenty of research, and it's made in America. 

OptiMSM, or methlysulfonylmethane, can be effective against inflammation, pain, and recovery. 

Studies have found this ingredient to improve joint stiffness, reduce pain and enhance physical movement. 

Now, CurcuWIN is a trademarked ingredient of turmeric and it's basically one of the best anti-inflammatory ingredients to use. 

Turmeric has poor bioavailability but with this trademarked form, CurcuWIN, it has ultra high bioavailability as it's standardized to 20% total curcuminoids. 

It is further enhanced with the delivery system that the company uses, UltraSOL. 

The next ingredient is UC-II, and it contains 10mg collagen, along with undenatured type II collagen. 

This collagen ingredient helps strengthen joints as it can increase levels of collagen in the body.

In fact, it works well as studies have found this ingredient to increase knee mobility and with this benefit, it can improve performance.

It's beneficial to take joint support supplements for at least 2 months to see significant improvement. 

To help maximize the absorption of all these ingredients, Cyborg uses one of the best ingredients to accomplish this, and that's BioPerine. 

When this black pepper extract is used with turmeric it works even better as studies have found it to increase absorption of turmeric by 2000%. 

Cyborg is a complete joint supplement that contains highly bioavailable ingredients and it will help keep your joints functioning at it's best.

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Lubricates joints
Protects and helps repair joint tissue

Animal Flex by Universal Nutrition


Animal Flex is a joint formula to help maintain and improve bodybuilders joints. Each blend is designed to help joints stay healthy and strong.

While each blend has quite a few ingredients without any disclosure of dosages, it still has great reviews and many people regard this as a staple in their supplement arsenal.

The formula has everything from MSM, Glucosamine to Flaxseed oil, ginger root and even turmeric root.

The wide range of ingredients makes it an attractive joint supplement for bodybuilders, powerlifters and even athletes.

Like most products from Universal, you only need a single pack per day.

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Alternatively you can get it from these stores:

Multiple joint supporting ingredients
Well rounded formula

Extreme Joint Care by NutraBio


NutraBio has been leading the supplement industry with transparent and high quality ingredients right from day 1.

For nearly 2 decades, they've been setting the standard for top tier supplements for everyone, from elite athletes to bodybuilders and average joes.

Extreme Joint Care starts off strong with a big 1.5g dose of glucosamine sulfate, one of the best forms to have in a joint supplement. 

It's found in joint tissue and cartilage but although there are a few forms of this ingredient, this is one of the most studied forms. 

This ingredient will help reduce pain in joints and it can reduce inflammation. 

Glucosamine can also strengthen collagen, which can be damaged overtime with use. And the dose here is what was used in studies.

The next few ingredients are high quality and patented ingredients, including chondroitin sulfate, Opti-MSM, geletin, turmeric, KollaGen, ApresFlex, boron and BioPerine. 

Chondronitin works similary to glucosamine, in  that it can relive pain in joints and it's highly bioavailable. 

Opti-MSM is a trademarked ingredient, made in the States and it's shown to help enhance recovery from exercise, improves overall performance by increasing physical movement and helps repaired damaged tissue. 

This ingredient works in synergy with chondronitin and glucosamine. 

The rest of the formula is to help reduce inflammation, pain and help enhance recovery while reducing muscle soreness.

These are highly bioavailable, patented ingredients that work better than the extract forms that most joint support supplements contains.

Not only can Extreme Joint Care strengthen joint tissue but it can also prevent and reduce existing pain. 

There are no other fillers or other ingredients, so you know you are getting what you pay for and nothing else.

Now if you want a leading formula dedicated for joint health formulated by a trusted company, then go for their Extreme Joint Care product.

It has over 8 ingredients that are each made to work together to strengthen and maintain joint health.

Use discount code FITFREK. 

Take a look at Extreme Joint Care and try it out.

Well rounded formula for joint health
Strengthens joint tissue and reduces pain
Increases physical performance and movement
Made for the elite and hard working athletes

Collagen by Transparent Labs


Transparent Labs is already on here for their Joint Support supplement but it wouldn't be fair to leave out Collagen.

Collagen is important as you've probably learned because naturally, our body's production of collagen declines and we’re more prone to wrinkles, loose skin, and more importantly, heavy wear and tear on joints. 

While collagen contains a number of benefits for the skin, it’s here because it’s one of the best things for joint health and support.

When hydrolyzed collagen supplements are used on a regular basis, it’ll help reduce joint pain and promote healthy ligaments.

The dosage recommended by researchers is 5g, and TL’s Collagen Hydrolysate provides 11g which is more than enough.

Collagen contains 20 amino acids, 3 of which can mimic the body’s natural collagen.

This form is much easier to digest and coming from Transparent Labs, you know what you're getting, nothing more or less. 

Use coupon code FITFREK. 

High quality source of collagen

Orange Triad by Controlled Labs


Orange Triad is Controlled Labs  all-in-one multi-vitamin and joint care supplement.

With a complete range of vitamins from A to Z, you’re getting all the minerals and vitamins you need and whether you’re bodybuilding or training for the Olympics, you’ll surely get everything you need from 6 tablets of Orange Triad.

For joint health, you’re covered on all fronts as it has 2 specific blends for full joint and tendon health. 

What makes Orange Triad different is that it has the highest Vitamin B12 content and there's a huge list of high quality nutrients that these horse sized pills have.

Orange Triad covers the basics to ensure long term health, help maximize basic body functions and ease digestion of the bigger supplements you may take like creatine and protein.

While this is mainly here for it's joint complex, it has 2 vitamins that are important for health health, vitamin B and C, and both of these are in high dosages.

The joint complex makes up a 2g blend of glucosamine sulfate and chondroitin sulfate.

Both of these are important for cartilage health and keeping inflammation at bay.

If you're going to take a joint supplement, you may as well get something that has vitamins to cover your basics and help maximize workout performance.

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Alternatively you can get this from here.

Multivitamins with joint support

Joint Defender by 5% Nutrition


If you've tried every joint supplement and haven't found any success, and you want to try something that has particularly every joint ingredient in one, then Joint Defender is your choice. 

The late great Rich Piana has left behind this masterpiece of a joint support cocktail. 

It contains 17 ingredients that goes big on providing maximum joint support. 

Whether you're a true 5%'er or someone who needs joint protection, Joint Defender has been formulated to do the talking. 

Starting with a big 3g dose of glucosamine sulfate, this ingredient helps by reducing recovery time, inflammation, and even improving mobility. 

The next ingredient is also monster dosed at 2g, type II collagen. 

It's in a trademarked form of kollaGen II-xs, and it's known to reduce joint pain, help with mobility and improve overall joint health.

Proline, dosed at 2g, is a protein creating joint support ingredient that helps with joint repair. 

This essential amino acid has the ability to improve the efficiency of other joint supporting ingredients like MSM and collagen type II.

The formation of collagen and joint tissue repair is assisted by the 2g of lysine HCl, which is also another essential amino acid. 

The rest of the formula helps keep the joints lubricated, reduce pain and help improve mobility of the joints.

This joint support supplement was made for Rich Piana, and let's face it, the guy was a walking Hulk.

He was unmatched and this is what he would've used, and if it worked for him then it would most likely work for most of us. 

Thankfully this is a powdered supplement, otherwise you would be taking down horse sized tablets.

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Contains 17 of joint supporting ingredients
Helps keep joints lubricated and improves mobility
Repairs joint tissue and maintains them
Made for 5%'ers and professional bodybuilders

Research And Studies on Joint Supplements

Picture this:

Scientists in lab coats conducted a study titled:

"A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, prospective clinical trial evaluating water-soluble chicken eggshell membrane for improvement in joint health in adults with knee osteoarthritis".

Sounds fancy, right? Well, their findings were even fancier.

They discovered that a water-soluble chicken eggshell membrane significantly eased joint pain and stiffness in adults with knee osteoarthritis.

So, the eggshell membrane could be a potential game-changer for improving joint health.

Now, let's switch gears a bit. Imagine a diet rich in almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, and walnuts.

Sounds delicious, doesn't it?

Well, a study found that this nut-rich diet had a positive impact on metabolic syndrome components.

While this doesn't directly tie into joint health, it's a friendly reminder that a healthy diet can contribute to overall health, including those all-important joints.

Finally, let's talk about a study that looked at a natural combo of glucosamine, chondroitin, and methylsulfonylmethane (MSM).

This study found that this trio significantly reduced joint pain and improved the ability to perform daily activities, especially in those reporting knee pain.

So, this combination could be a potential ally for your joint health.

But here's the kicker:

While these studies show promising results, more research is needed to fully understand the impact of these ingredients on joint health.

And as always, it's recommended to consult with a healthcare provider before starting any new supplement regimen.

Because, let's face it, you want to lift heavy, not lift risks.

Let's dig into the effective ingredients for joint supplements.

Methyl Sulfonyl Methane MSM

MSM is an organic sulfur compound that's used in many joint supplements.

It works by providing a sulfur source for the body which is used for protein synthesis, strengthening connective tissue and absorbing nutrients for energy.

Studies have shown results with dosages of 3 grams per day.

It can improve joint health, joint mobility and reduce inflammation [1].

The best form of MSM is “OptiMSM” as it's the form that's used in human studies and is produced under strict regulations.

Boswellia Serrata

Boswellia Serrata comes from a tree commonly known as Frankincense.

It's traditionally used to reduce inflammation and it's been seen in various studies to do so effectively.

Studies show Boswellia can decrease an inflammation enzyme called 5-lioxygenase [2], and it can also inhibit leukotriene biosynthesis [34] , which are inflammation molecules that can be released from exercising or allergies.

It's also been seen to reduce a pro inflammatory transcription factor, NF-Kappa B, and by doing this it can help reduce inflammation all over the body.


Curcumin is an ingredient that's popularly known for being able to reduce inflammation.

Similarly to Boswellia, it can decrease the NF-kappaB transcription factor.

By doing this, it can inhibit IKb from being degraded, which is the molecule that keeps NF-kappaB inactive [5].

Curcumin can also reduce oxidative and inflammatory stress, which is also caused by high blood sugar. That's why it's often paired with ginger, as ginger can reduce blood sugar.

This ingredient is one of the most used for reducing inflammation and it is great to have in a joint support supplement.


Chondroitin sulfate is a glycosaminoglycan, that makes up a large part of the bone, cartilage, skin, tendons and ligaments [6].

It's similar to glucosamine in that it plays a role with joint health in the body but it's very bioavailable as the body uses it before it is metabolized by the kidneys.

Chondroitin, or CS, works in synergy with glucosamine. The majority of research show promising benefits when it's used together with glucosamine, but there's still a few studies that show chondroitin can be effective on it's own.

Research has shown CS to not only have anti inflammatory benefits, but it also has anti catabolic, antioxidant, anti apoptotic and anabolic properties. [7]

It's useful in joint supplements because studies show it may be able to repair damaged cartilage [8]. 


Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound in joint tissue and cartilage [9].

It plays as an defensive joint support ingredient.

It can prevent what would otherwise cause damage to the integrity of the compounds that keep the joints together.

The sulfate form has been shown to be more bioavailable and effective than other forms as science shows. [10]

Glucosamine has quite a few benefits for joint health, from reducing joint pain to decreasing both inflammation and collage degradation.

This means glucosamine can act as a pain reliever [11] and it can reduce inflammation [12].

And it can prevent the degradation of collagen. It's the building block of joint tendons and ligaments.

Research shows how glucosamine can prevent the degradation of collagen in joints by using dosages of 1.5g and 3g, and both of these daily dosages were shown to be effective. [1314]


Joint health is a topic that not only should help you prevent joint issues but also strengthen them and make them have the best functionality and performance so they won't hinder you in the future. 

Do athletes need to take joint supplements?

Absolutely! Athletes put a lot of strain on their joints, which can lead to wear and tear over time. Joint supplements can help support joint health and potentially reduce the risk of joint-related issues down the line.

What are the best joint supplements for bodybuilding?

There are many great options out there, including the supplements listed above. The best one for you depends on your individual needs and budget.

What are the best joint supplements for athletes?

There are several joint supplements that are popular among athletes, including those containing glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM, and Omega-3 fatty acids. The best one for you depends on your individual needs and preferences.

Can joint supplements improve athletic performance?

While joint supplements aren't designed to directly improve performance, they can help maintain joint health, which is crucial for performance. After all, it's hard to perform at your best when you're dealing with joint pain.

Are there any side effects of joint supplements that athletes should be aware of?

Some people may experience side effects like stomach upset, constipation, diarrhea, headache, and skin reactions. Always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement.

How long does it take for joint supplements to work?

It varies from person to person and depends on the specific supplement, but many people start to see benefits within a few weeks of consistent use.

Can joint supplements help with recovery after workouts?

Yes, joint supplements can help support recovery by promoting joint health and reducing inflammation, which can be particularly beneficial after intense workouts.

Should joint supplements be taken before or after workouts?

Most joint supplements can be taken at any time of day, but it's always best to follow the manufacturer's instructions. If you're unsure, consult with a healthcare professional.

Are there any side effects of joint supplements?

Some people may experience side effects like stomach upset, constipation, diarrhea, headache, and skin reactions. Always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement.

How can I incorporate joint supplements into my routine?

Most joint supplements are taken orally. Some may have specific instructions, like taking them with a meal. Always follow the manufacturer's instructions.

What else can I do to support joint health?

In addition to taking supplements, regular exercise, a balanced diet, and adequate rest are crucial for joint health. There are also specific exercises that can help, like stretching and strength training.

What are the Best Joint Supplements?

The ones recommended in the list above are the best available on the market now. 

Transparent Labs Joint Support is a good choice, and it's an example of a properly dosed and formulated joint supplement to take.

So there you have it, folks.

We've journeyed through the world of joint supplements, explored the science behind them, and even debunked a few myths along the way.

Remember, whether you're a seasoned bodybuilder or just starting out, your joints are your best friends.

They're with you during every lift, every squat, and every grueling workout. So, they deserve a little TLC, don't they?

Joint supplements, along with a healthy lifestyle, can be your secret weapon in maintaining joint health and keeping those creaks and groans at bay. But remember, they're not a magic pill.

They're a tool in your toolbox, a piece of the puzzle.

So, are you ready to give your joints the love they deserve?

To lift heavier, perform better, and say goodbye to joint pain?

The choice is yours. Because at the end of the day, it's not just about building muscles.

It's about building a healthier, stronger you.

And remember, if you ever need more information, our top-ranking lists and free spreadsheet workout programs are just a click away.

Here's to happy lifting and healthier joints!

by Nader Qudimat

Forged by iron and cold steel, I'm Nader, a mid-30s natural bodybuilder. Once a 100lb skinny guy, I've transformed into a 200lb muscular athlete with over 15 years of lifting experience. Today, I leverage my transformation and extensive experience to guide countless individuals on their fitness journeys.

Click here to check out my 12 year transformation: Natural 12 Year Transformation

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