Ankle Arthritis is a common condition.
Here are some things that the Physiotherapist, Daniel Lawson recommends to his patients to help with Ankle Arthritis and keep you out there doing what you love.
Arthritis is a broad condition that affects how your joints work. Ankle Arthritis occurs when the cartilage that connects the bones in your ankle joint, rub together. This can lead to pain, stiffness, loss of movement and more importantly, can affect how you live your life.
Although Ankle Arthritis can occur from inflammation, injuries or simply age, there are a few exercises that you can do to help with this condition as outlined below.
Ankle pumps mobilise and lubricate the joints in your ankle. This helps promote blood flow to the muscle and tissue in your calves and shins.
Imagine you’re stepping on the brakes of your car. Aim for between 15 to 20 reps. Repeat for the other ankle and repeat this exercise 2 to 3 times a day.
Whilst the first exercise was aimed at getting your ankle moving, this exercise is designed to add strength. Calf raises focus on strengthening the muscles in your calf, which support your ankle. Keeping them strong is an important strategy to protect your ankle and to improve your mobility.
Aim to take 3 seconds to raise, 3 seconds to hold and 3 seconds to lower. Aim for between 5 to 10 reps and you should start to feel fatigue in your calves. If you are completing 10 reps easily, you can add some weights e.g. by adding weights in a backpack. Complete 2 to 3 sets, 2 to 3 times a day.
It is also important to stretch. Calf stretches help improve the flexibility of your calf muscles, which help with the range of motion in your ankle.
Perform the stretch first with your knee straight, then with your knee bent. Hold each stretch for 30 seconds and aim to completely 2 sets on each leg. Complete these sets 2 to 3 times daily.
Another potential solution for dealing with Ankle Arthritis is to find an ankle brace to support your ankle and allow you to get more out of your day.
Choose an ankle brace that:
- Please watch the video to view proper technique for each exercise.
- Please consult with your physiotherapist for exercises suited to your condition