Improve your Ankle Mobility to Prevent Injuries

Running Injuries: Foot & Ankle,Videos: Running Injury Prevention & Care,Videos: Mobilisation & Stretching
Improve your Ankle Mobility to Prevent Injuries

When doing Natural Gait Analysis for our customers, we’ve been noticing how many runners have limited ankle range of motion and foot flexibility. This can result in all kinds of ankle and foot injuries – Achilles tendinitis, plantar fasciitis, ankle sprains, Morton's neuroma and many more.

In this video we want to show you why and how to improve your ankle mobility. Simple ideas and simple solutions to immensely improve your running technique and prevent injuries knocking at your door. Enjoy!

Ankle Recovery Exercises

It’s very important to rebuild strength and mobility after an ankle sprain or strain. Once the tissue is damaged, there is a higher chance of having the same issue in the future. That’s why as soon as your ankle and foot can hold your body weight without pain, and you can perform squats without any discomfort – basically, once you’re recovered from the ankle sprain – you should start to think about rebuilding strength. 

Ankle recovery exercises include even as little as a barefoot stand and balance to more complex exercises like a barefoot single leg squat and reach. Single-leg exercises performed barefoot will tremendously improve your ankle strength and proprioception after an ankle injury. 

Improving Ankle Proprioception

So, what’s ankle proprioception? In brief, it’s the body’s awareness. When you run, the your foot is in contact with the ground for about 200 milliseconds. That’s a very short period of time, but it’s enough for your amazing body to transfer information about the surface you’re running on from the sensory receptors at the bottom of your feet to your brain: if it’s hard or soft, even or uneven, safe to land on or not. 

After an injury like an ankle sprain or strain, this body awareness is limited and needs to be rebuilt, in order to avoid recurrence of the same injury. The sensitivity of the ankle is reduced, so there’s a higher risk that it will ‘judge’ the surface incorrectly.

But don’t worry, there are exercises designed to improve ankle proprioception. The best way is to take off your shoes and do some single leg exercises. You’ll immediately feel all those muscles and tendons around your ankle awaken, trying to find balance. That wouldn’t happen with shoes on.

The Benefits of Barefoot Exercises for Runners

  • Improve ankle proprioception
  • Improve balance and body awareness
  • Activation of higher leg muscles
  • Higher workout intensity
  • Improvement of foot & body mechanics
  • Improvement of ankle mobility
  • Just to feel good! 

Ankle Mobility Tools

Thera-Band Resistance Band

Thera-Band Resistance Band
Muscle Recovery & Strengthening

Trigger Point The Grid Foam Roller

Trigger Point The Grid Foam Roller
Foam Rollers & Massage Aids

These are exercises that we've found very useful and want to share with our customers. But we're not certified instructors. Always consult your specialist before beginning any exercise programme. This general information is not intended to diagnose any medical condition or to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate exercise prescription. If you experience any pain or difficulty with these exercises, stop and consult your healthcare provider.

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