Raasay Waters Sports Therapy Cape Town

Ankle Sprain Treatment Cape Town

Ankle Sprain Treatment Cape Town

It is by far the most common athletic injury around. While this isn't much of a concern for runners hitting the pavement, off-road terrain puts trail runners at an inherently higher risk for ankle sprains. Since the rocks, tree roots, ups and downs of the trails aren't going to disappear, it is important for trail runners to have a couple of tricks up their sleeves for preventing and rehabilitating ankle sprains. A growing body of research offers an easy solution: balance exercises. This type of training is proving to be an increasingly vital part of rehabilitation for many runners as they navigate the ups, downs, cracks and crags that come with the trail running territory.

Studies have shown that nearly 30 percent of athletes who suffer a lateral ankle sprain demonstrate subsequent chronic ankle instability. Dr. Jay Hertel, author of a recent article concerning the rehabilitation of ankle injuries, says that the architecture of the ankle makes it susceptible to these types of injuries.

During the gait cycle, the foot is supposed to slightly pronate inwards as it hits the ground. When someone suffers an ankle sprain, the foot goes into supination and rolls outward, stretching the ligament on the outside of the ankle. If the runner is moving fast enough and rolls the ankle with enough force, a sprain occurs.

What makes a runner more likely to experience another sprain after the initial injury isn't so much weakness, but a sensory issue. The sensory receptors in the ligament are also damaged. Those receptors are responsible for proprioception, which is a function of the nervous system that helps a runner sense where the foot is in relation to the ground.

In my experience as a Sports Therapist in my practice, massage works well to help improve the range of movement, flexibility and decrease stiffness in the ankle joint. Mobilizations to assist with improving the range of movement and to get the ankle mobility back. I then prescribe exercises to restore strength, flexibility, balance, and endurance as quickly as possible during the first few days following injury.

Balance training will improve the proprioception and the coordination of the muscles around the ankle joint. It improves the neuromuscular coordination or sensory motor coordination that's going to involve the sensations of the ankle.