Many athletes, weekend warriors, dancers, and wearers of high heels have experienced an ankle sprain. Most likely the sprain was a result of a quick change in movement, poor footing, or stepping on something unstable.
When these sprains are mild often people will self treat with rest, ice, compression and elevation and then slowly return to their normal activities. Whilst the injury settles this can be where ankle instability starts. This is because the largest predictor of ankle sprains is having had a previous ankle sprain.
Following an ankle sprain it is very important to come into physio to start strengthening the muscles around your ankle, improving your proprioception, as well as improving the ankle mobility in order to maintain adequate stability and prevent recurring sprains during your activity of choice.
Examples of effective proprioceptive exercises that require minimal to no equipment for the ankle include heel to toe walking, single leg balance on the floor or an unstable surface, as well as hoping and landing in multiple directions.
Reference: Rivera MJ, Winklemann ZK, Powden CJ, Games KE; Proprioceptive Training for the Prevention of Ankle Sprains: An Evidence-Based Review. J Athl Train. 2017 Nov; 52(11):1065-1067
If you’ve had an ankle sprain and want to avoid another please get in touch.