Ankle Injury Info

Ankle injury is the single most common sports injury. Millions of people suffer ankle sprains each year and many go untreated, causing pain, discomfort, and dysfunction for weeks, months, or even years. As an athletic trainer, I've treated countless injuries, from sprains and strains to tendinopathy and fractures. No  injury is exactly the same, and every one needs to be managed properly for a successful recovery. Sprains, strains, fractures, tendonitis, and chronic inflammation are just a few of the injuries associated with the ankle and foot.

The ankle is one of the most important joints in the body when it comes to sports. Face it, without a normal, healthy ankle, you cannot compete. Too many times I have heard people talk about the ankle like it is unimportant..."it's just an ankle sprain, you will be fine in a week or two." Perhaps you have done this yourself - sprained your ankle and didn't see a doctor or therapist, but continued to have problems for several weeks or longer.

The ankle serves as the connection between your body and the ground when you are walking, running, or jumping. It is a hinge-like joint that relies on complex interactions between the ligaments and muscles to remain stable. We often overlook ankle injuries, or dismiss them as not serious. But in fact, a single ankle sprain can cause lifelong problems if not treated correctly. Because the ankle is the connection to the ground, ankle injuries can lead to problems in other areas of the body - like the knee, hip, and low back.

Function of the body is centered around a concept of the kinetic chain. This essentially means that everything in the body is connected...and when something happens to one part or joint, it effects the parts or joints both above and below.

Did you know that an ankle injury like a sprain, even one that is completely healed and no longer painful, can alter the way you squat, run, jump, and throw. I have seen more than one athlete walk into my clinic complaining about low back pain, and it turns out that they had an ankle sprain several months or years ago - and that is the culprit of their low back pain. It amazes me to this day that it is all connected so intricately.

An ankle injury can vary in both degree and nature. From ankle sprains to tendonitis, they come in all forms. The key to limiting long lasting effects is to understand your ankle injury, and to know how to fix it. Ankle injuries are a part of sports, but they should not, and cannot, be overlooked.

Common Ankle Injuries

  • Ankle Sprains: The Most Common Ankle Injury
    The most common sports injury, ankle sprains can cause lifelong problems if overlooked. Chronic ankle instability, prolonged pain and swelling, and trouble walking are just a few of the problems associated with ankle sprains. Learn how they happen, symptoms, and how to treat them.

  • Ankle Sprain Recovery
    This is a question I get regularly from my patients and website visitors. It varies from person to person, but there are some things you should know about your ankle sprain recovery.
  • Broken Ankle Advice
    Ankle fractures are, unfortunately, common in both sports and recreational activities. There are many different types of fractures. Learn more about what to do if you have an ankle fracture.

  • Shin Splints
    Also known as medial tibial stress syndrome, shin splints can be a debilitating condition. Many people have chronic calf and leg pain. Learn more about this common injury, and how to manage it.

  • Achilles Tendonitis
    Commonly seen in runners, achilles tendonitis (or tendinosis) is often a chronic problem. Achilles tendonopathy can lead to achilles tendon rupture, a condition which requires surgery. Learn more about this injury and its signs and symptoms.

  • Achilles Tendon Rupture
    Often preceded by achilles tendonitis, this is a serious injury that usually requires surgery. It is most common in older adults, especially men, but can occur in young athletes as well. Learn more about this injury and the necessary treatment.

  • Plantar Fasciitis
    Plantar fasciitis is very common in athletes and the general population. It is an inflammation of the tissues on the bottom of the foot. Learn about the causes and how to treat this painful condition.

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