The role of ankle rehab in preventing future injuries
Lateral ankle sprains are extremely common in people who participate in sport and if not correctly rehabilitated can lead to more long term struggles. The majority of ankle sprains will often recover quite quickly and the pain will be gone but range of motion, balance and strength deficits persist long after the injury. It is these deficits which are thought to be why 75% of people who injure their ankle have suffered a previous injury. Therefore, ankle rehabilitation becomes really important after the pain has gone to reduce the risk of re-injury.
Ankle rehabilitation will initially focus on restoring range of motion and strength to ensure both ankles are similar. From there rehabilitation will focus on restoring the ankles ability to balance, especially in a dynamic nature which is often the most important aspect of rehabilitation. This often involves exercises that challenge balance using equipment such as wobble boards, foam mats and other rehab tools. It is also important to choose functional exercises based on the sport played by the individual to ensure the ankle is ready and the return to sport is safe.
Ankle sprains are common and so are reoccurrences, but with a solid rehabilitation program functional deficits can be addressed and a safe return to sport can be achieved which reduces the risk of future ankle sprains. Book in to see one of our therapists who can set you up with a good ankle rehabilitation program to prevent those nasty recurring sprains!