T Nation

Sprained My Ankle, Need Advice


#1

two wednesdays ago i sprained my ankle. This is the second time in two years that this ankle has been sprained. I am still on crutches, but am expecting to put them away and walk tomorrow (i can walk for a couple steps right now, but dont want to push it or I might re-injure it.) I want to start working out again, since i have been really anxious to get back at it after a week off. What would you guys suggest?

i know i cannot do squats or deadlifts, can most likely do leg curls and such. Im pretty sure i will be able to do bent over rows, but i think thats about it for standing exercises. Im just kind of lost on what i should be doing, with me having a sprained ankle and all.

Also, the day before i sprained it i bought Methoxy-7, should i start taking it tomorrow when working out? or should i wait until i am 100% recovered and am able to squat and deadlift? Thanks for the help and im sorry if its alot of shit you guys dont care about.


#2

I just went through the same thing but I fractured my foot. I took a week off totally and then did just upper body and only leg extensions and curls. Yesterday was the first time I did a full leg workout and damn was I sore. Not the foot just my legs in general. Be sure to tape it up really well with some sports tape and you will have less of a chance to injure. I would tape that puppy up anytime you are doing something that may cause a sprain so it wont turn as easily.


#3

1) Range of motion (ROM) exercises...plantarflexion, dorsiflexion, inversion, eversion (up/down/in/out)

2) standing gastroc stretch

3) bilateral (2 legs) heel raises off ground, progressed to off edge of step for increased ROM and strength

4) eccentric heel raise on ground, progressed to unilateral (single) eccentric heel raise off edge of step

5) weight shifts progressed to single leg stand progressed to 3-way challenge balance (stand on 1 foot lift opposite leg straight out in front, to side, and back, don't put foot to ground, repeat)

6) unilateral leg press/leg sled

7) unilateral body weight exercises...lunge squat to retro lunges to bulgarian split squats to step-ups

8) Ice


#4

Thanks for the advice guys. About the Methoxy-7, i kind of thought about it and decided that i will just wait a couple weeks to use it, so that i can use it at full health. It seems better to get the full effect from it, then to mostly be working upper body and doing leg curls while using it.


#5

Stationary bike to get it loose and warm. Then a lot of the stuff mentioned before about stretches and flexibility. Another good thing is balance excercises (standing on the injured ankle with your eyes close, for like 30 sec at a time or something). Also, I've always found that wearing one of those neoprene ankle sleeves really helps keep swelling down. The swelling is important to keep down because otherwise you can get scar tissue in the joint that will more permanently impair mobility.

Constant attention to the flexibility and swelling make a huge difference in recovery. I severly sprained my left ankle in high school, didn't know enough about rehabbing it, and it took several years before it finally returned to the same size and flexibility as the right one.

I also just sprained my right ankle a few weeks ago, and I just kept a medium sized trash can sitting out with water in it. After every workout on the ankle, I would buy a bag of ice on the way home, dump it in the trash can and ice the ankle for 10-20 at a time. That coupled with the ankle sleeve worn during the day drastically reduce the swelling and returned mobility to the joint faster than I've ever experienced in the past. I did both those things for about 2-3 weeks. Now its pretty much back to normal, but its amazing how weak my calf got just in that time.


#6

The only problem with the trash can is that swelling is gravity dependent, so icing below your heart doesn't make much sense if you are trying to prevent swelling. Put an ice bag on your ankle (or large bag of frozen peas/corn--conforms to the ankle) and wrap with an ACE wrap then elevate (put foot on couch and your body on the floor (do some crunches)). This way you get all four variables of RICE
R--Rest/Rehab
I--Ice
C--Compression
E--Elevation


#7

To build on my previous post...Concentrate on using the muscles surrounding the ankle, which causes intermittent compression with each contraction. Think of it like squeezing a wet sponge...you squeeze the sponge the water comes out...you contract the muscles the swelling gets pushed out.

You spend all day with your foot below your heart (sitting or standing) so gravity and your heart (the pump) are getting fluid to the area, if you aren't using the muscles the swelling will just sit there. The body has a great way of getting fluid to the area just not such a great way of getting it back without muscular contraction.


#8

Thanks again for the advice, like i said before, i sprained my ankle pretty bad a little less than two years ago in highschool. I did not know much about sprains back then, plus my basketball coach was pressuring me to hurry up with the recovery so i could get back on the court. My ankle was not fully recovered untill this fall, when it finally felt as good as my other ankle. Im trying to correct my mistakes with this ankle this time around.


#9

That's correct, I forgot to mention the elevation. I would trashcan for one or two cycles, then get on the couch, wrap my leg and put it up, sometime with continued ice bags. I just found you can get the ankle so much colder all over quickly with a trash can. I also like doing the alternating cold water/hot water for like 3 minutes each. That's great to start doing a week or so after, when the injury has stabilized a bit and isn't increasing in bruising. It's a good one to help get the swelling out too.


#10

Personally, I wouldn't use the hot water treatment as heat is a vasodilator that would actually increase the swelling, especially when coupled with the gravity of having your ankle in a bucket. The hot/cold is good for total body restorative methods after weight training training however its use in swelling control is not justified.


#11

If you want to increase the degree of cold and gain the benefit of elevation I would wrap your ankle with a cold wet paper towels or thin cloth towel and then place the ice bags over top then wrap with ACE wrap.