Use your abdomen as the brace instead of outside help. The knee wraps serve no use except to the powerlifter who wants a bigger max lift. They may impede the growth of structures around the knee or even cause some harm if used often. This is because these objects can become band-aids. Your body will rely on these object to support your frame; and if this happens the body sees no need to strengthen muscles around your bodies joints to provide stability.
Many people use towels or padding under the bar. This may lead to some instability because the weight is "unbalanced" on a small area on your back. If the bar is hurting you this is because there is not enough trapezius muscle mass covering your shoulder blade yet. So, place the bar a little further down your back just above or below the sharp ridge on your scapula (shoulder blade).
Squats HURT! The most productive exercises are the most painful. It's a fact of life. If you squat with proper technique and heavy (for you) kilo's, you might grunt, scream, cry, but you probably won't be injured and you'll make terrific headway towards you goals. Learn to be aggressive and focus your complete attention on the task at hand (the SQUAT).
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Tabata - biking - DU's - Burpees - Push Ups - etc :)
3 x 5 then Find a Heavy Front Squat
3 x 5 then Find a Heavy Floor Press
1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1- 1- 1- 1- 1- 1 Challenging Power Clean
WOD / Metcon:
5 rounds -
suicide wall balls (each return do 3 wall balls)
5 KB Swings
5 Power Cleans