Your ankles do a lot of work. They help to hold up your entire body, which is a lot of work. They also help move your body wherever you need to go. If your ankles are weak, it can make doing even the simplest of tasks, such as walking, difficult, or you could end up injuring yourself. Read on for exercises and stretches to strengthen your ankles.
Stand On One Leg
Standing on one leg can strengthen your ankles. Stand on one leg for 30 seconds at a time. If your ankles aren't very strong, or your balance is off, hold on to a wall or a chair for support. If standing on one leg for 30 seconds is too easy, add 5-second increments to your exercise. When this is too easy, try to do a one-legged squat to strengthen your ankle.
Walk The Balance Beam
Walk on a balance beam to help improve your balance and strengthen your ankles. If your ankles are not strong, walking with one foot in front of the other may be difficult. If you don't have a balance beam available to you, put tape on the ground and walk across it as you would a real balance beam.
Point Your Toes
Sit in a chair and point your toes down towards the floor and then up to the ceiling. Repeat this and hold the positions for 20 seconds. If you can, move your ankles from side to side, holding them in the position for 10 to 15 seconds each way. This will help stretch your ankles and will improve flexibility in your ankles.
Place the toes of one of your feet up against the wall and then press your toes and the ball of your foot against the wall, keeping your knee straight and putting your weight into the foot on the wall. Your other foot is slightly behind you. Hold this stretch for 15 seconds, then repeat on the other foot. This stretch can help improve flexibility in your toes, ankle, and calf to prevent injury.
To help strengthen your ankles and prevent injury, you can do the stretches and exercises above, which can improve your flexibility. If you have an ankle injury, visit your podiatrist to treat your injury and to prevent reinjuring yourself again in the future. Your podiatrist can also recommend other exercises/stretches to strengthen your ankles, as well as tips that can help you prevent injury while doing daily tasks, exercising, or playing sports.
Reach out to a foot and ankle specialist to learn more.