Did you know that ankle pain is the second most common issue in athletes? In fact basketball players are the worst affected. “But I don’t play professional sport!” You may ask. ” Then why the hell am I getting pain on running? Ok, I rolled my ankle but it’s been weeks! It should have healed by now. And I haven’t even gone back to the gym yet!” . Does this conversation ring a bell? Although you may have had this in your head rather than me. So here’s a quick explanation of what is going on.

basketball game, jump, sport, ankle, knee, hip

Your ankle pain is most commonly because of sprained ligaments

So if you’ve rolled your ankle off the curb of a footpath or just didn’t see that hole in the ground, chances are you have injured your ATFL. Now what in the world is that? It’s that big fat (not so fat) ligament that supports your ankle joint on the outside. But hang on, this is not the only ligament that supports the joint. There are other ligaments on the inside of the ankle that help too. But the ATFL is by far the most commonly injured one. You see when you roll your foot inwards, the ligament gets stretched and it can even tear. This really depends on how forcefully you’ve gone down or tripped. Once it’s hurt, there’s swelling and inflammation that cause ankle pain. You may even notice bruising. If it’s not severe, you can walk on it with some discomfort. However, if the injury is more serious then you’ll find it difficult to put weight on it. Sometimes there can be minor fractures that can go unnoticed. And you will certainly need help from a health professional to figure out how bad it is.

What to do immediately if you have ankle pain?

Ice works best on using immediately after an ankle sprain. It will reduce the swelling and prevent it from ballooning up. If you can’t put weight on your leg, please don’t try to be a hero. Listen to your body and stay off it. Get carried out on stretcher if you have to like one of those sports people. But don’t try to walk it off. This is becase you can do more damage to it. Next, as soon as you can, get your foot pointing up towards the ceiling. Try to move your ankle or toes to keep the circulation flowing. And finally, go see a physio! Because you will need one to get your pain down and your movement up. Also to get back into sport, so you can do it all over again. ha! just kidding.

When to see a physio for ankle pain?

You have to remember that pain is not normal. It’s your body telling you that something’s wrong. So if you are still feeling ankle pain on running or walking after 2 weeks of injury, you’ve got to see a physio! Why? Because a physio will take your pain away. They will get more movement into your joint by doing manual therapy. And finally show the exact strengthening exercises you need to get back on your feet. These steps are just so important to prevent getting ankle pain again. Be sure to find a good physio though. There are a lot of people who don’t touch you and want to cure you of your pain with exercises. In my opinion that doesn’t work. Exercises strengthen a joint, it doesn’t take away the hurt. So I hope that makes sense. If it doesn’t give us a call and I’m happy to explain more.