Updated: Jul 30, 2020
Ankle sprains are a runner’s nightmare. They keep you from being able to participate in great events like the upcoming ISL 5k-Spring Shuffle right here in Metairie, LA. This event on March 7, 2015, helps support the International School of Louisiana, the top charter school in the state. However, if you have a sprain, your joint can’t support your run—unless you strengthen the ankle again.
Your ankle supports your whole body whenever you take a step. Normally, the ligaments that stabilize the joint make this possible. After a sprain, however, these ligaments are stretched out and weak. Not only is this painful, your ankle cannot support you well. That’s where rehabilitation comes in. To get your feet back to normal and return to running, you have to strengthen the ankle again.
Ankle treatments to exercise your joint are easy enough to do at home. Try these rehab activities to rebuild your joint strength:
Foot pointing – Loop a resistance band around the ball of your foot and hold the free ends in your hands. Keeping the band taut, slowly point your foot against the band. Then relax and repeat this ten times.
Foot flexing – Tie a resistance band around a table leg and loop the other side around the top of your foot. Sit far enough away that the band is taut. Flex your foot against the band, then relax and repeat ten times.
Resistance training – While either sitting or standing, put the inside of your foot against a solid object, like a couch, and press your foot against it. Try to only press the foot below the ankle and not your whole leg. Hold this for ten seconds, then relax and repeat. Then complete the whole exercise again with the outside of your foot propped against the couch.
Balance training – Balance on one foot without support for 30 seconds. As that gets easier, extend your time to a minute, then close your eyes, and then stand on a pillow to progressively challenge yourself.
Don’t rush the recovery process—that will only increase your risk for re-injury and delay your recovery. Instead, recondition yourself over time. Don’t let ankle pain control you! If you’re struggling with your ankle rehab, or you haven’t already gotten help for a sprain, let our team at Gulf South Foot & Ankle, LLC in Metairie, LA, help you. Use our website to contact us. You can also call us directly at (504) 708-4810.