Grade 4 Sprained Ankle

First, the search capability has not worked on my computer this past week so I have not been able to “search”.

Anyhow, last night I severely sprained my ankle on a near 180 degree roll to the outside. I have sprained my ankles countless times in the past but nothing like this. Docs were convinced it was broken until they saw the xrays, so was I for that matter. They said 6 weeks before any athletic activities(working out not included). I would like to cut that figure in half if possible. Historically, I heal relatively fast, so I have my fingers crossed. I am looking for adivice in two areas…

  1. What nutritional stuff should I be loading up on? My intuition says lots of good fats, but who knows what else there is.

  2. Good rehap exercises to regain strength faster and more effectively. In addition, when should I begin these exercises.

Thanks t-men/women

Are you in any type of walking boot, air cast etc… Not being able to see your ankle limits the benefits of the following. If you are already under the care of an orthopedic and they have told you to stay off of it, then follow the advice.

You might be surprised to learn that a lot of the exercies you need to do to recover are similar to ones you already are doing.

First things first:

You need to make sure you range of motion is restored. Until you can move in all directions the same distance as your uninvolved ankle you will never return to full status.

Best exercies done 3-5x/day:
Giant Circles (both directions)10-20

Alphabet x 3- Drawing out the capital letters of the alphabet with your foot (toes are the tip of the pencil)

Ankle Pumps x 50-
Up and down like a gas peddle
Side- Side

Calf and soleus stretching, hold each 30 seconds repeat 3-5x

Once Range of motion is returning you can start some stregthening.
Tubing or thera band works best, working in all 4 directions. Its tedious but it will help. To fatigue.

One legged balancing- hold as long as you can. When you get good you can close your eyes.

Single Leg- Leg Press (higher reps)

Step- Ups- Sets of 10-15

Step Downs (where you start on top of the box and step with your good ankle to the ground) Sets of 10-15

Single Leg Squats (as tolerated)

Split Squats( static lunges)

As stregnth progresses you can advance to forward lunges, side lunges, body weight squats etc…

Your leg training may not be quite what you are used to, but in short order it will return to normal.

When people talk about having chronic ankle instability, its usually because they have had multiple sprains and done minimal rehab. Take care of the problem now and it will not be a problem later.


Thanks for the thorough response, I really appreciate it.

At the moment I am in fiberglass cast up to my knee. I get it off next week. As for now I am making fists with my toes and pulling my toes up and down. Fortunately, this is not causing me pain today. Last night I had so much fluid in there, no movement was possible.

check out ankle traction by dick hartzel of jumpstretch at

Geez, Tree. I think I’ll print that off and save it for reference. Lots of good info.

Any good foods or supplements to support soft tissue healing?

I have “chronic ankle instability”, I severely sprained an ankle 15 years ago and have never been the same. Had I known how to rehab it (or even realized how bad it was) I might have had a fighting chance at fixing it.

As it is, I now risk hitting the pavement every time my bad foot “rolls over” just because I step on a rock, ledge, crack, etc. I have compensated by wearing lace-up boots, which I would prefer to do without, some day. It sucks to lack the basic stability so that just walking on bumpy terrain is a hazard.

Is there anything that can be done for a guy who injured himself years ago? At this point I would do whatever it takes to regain ankle stability.

It sucks to lack the basic stability so that just walking on bumpy terrain is a hazard.

Thanks for any advice.

check out the jump stretch programs lumpy.


The same rehab principles apply for new and old injuries. Older injuries can sometimes be progressed more quickly than a fresh sprain.

As always start with range of motion. Then progress the strength.

Thanks for the tips!

It doesn’t help to be big or strong if stepping on a crack the wrong way will make you wipe out!