Sprained Ankle

  • Creator
  • #52901

    I sprained my ankle while trail running downhill about a week ago. Looks like it might take a while to fully recover. I started with some easy rehab exercises.
    Now I am wondering what’s the best way to keep doing aerobic workouts while my ankle is still recovering. Runnning and in particular trail running is probably not the best thing to start too soon. I assume biking and skitouring and hiking are probably the best ways as the boots give some ankle support?

    Also, I was entering week 16 of my trail running training plan and am wondering how to continue with that.
    I don’t have any races coming up at this point and was planning to transition into an alpine climbing training plan after that.
    I guess the best way going forward would be to stop the trail running training and do aerobic and strength exercises at a level my ankle tolerates and then start a transition period into alpine climbing training once my ankle is fully recovered?

Posted In: Injury & Rehab

  • Participant
    Pete Dickinson MS,PT on #52912

    Yes, partial weight bearing modes of exercise would probably be best. You can still do some strength lifts for upper body, and dead lifts which don’t require much ankle mobility. For rehab do your dorsi flexion mobility,and easy band strength. Now’s a good time to work on open chain hip strength. Best of luck moving forward!

    russes011 on #52930


    Since your username is swim.bike.run I presume you swim. I would swim to maintain your aerobic capacity. Also, as Pete mentioned, light weight bearing exercise would be quite useful in promoting recovery, as long as it doesn’t cause any pain in the ankle–sooner you can walk on it without pain the better.

    The big question is, as an alpine climber, how do you get back to climbing, at least in the gym. Hangboard is a no brainer. Maybe getting a ‘boot’ to wear would allow you to climb in the gym, and even boulder in the gym. If the injury just occurred, there are a few medical-level things you can do to expedite the recovery, but I would defer this to a medical professional to delineate in person. Connecting with a good PT or sports medicine doc, if insurance allows, may be what you need.

    — Steve

    sbr on #52943

    Pete, Steve, thanks for your input.
    Unfortunately I currently have any access to swimming pools because of Covid.

    russes011 on #52945


    Forgot about that. Perhaps a rower at the gym could give you a an intense aerobic work-out without straining your ankle (using a boot). I suppose you could do a one month cycle of higher intensity, but shorter duration rowing intervals. Since these types of work-outs are not very specific to trail running or alpinism, early season may be the right time to do them. Then you can do the more specific, longer slow runs and hikes when your ankle is better, 6-8wks before mid to late summer. I understand this is the reverse of the UA training paradigm, but it also can work.

    Best of luck,


    Thomas Summer, MD on #52949

    Some more thoughts:

    how is it progressing? did some professional check the ankle?
    Movement is key. But only with a little discomfort, not pain. I would also send you to the pool, but this f…… pandemic… But you can use the water to get blood and lymph flow going. Use alternating hot and cold. I would also recommend compression socks, to reduce the swelling. Taping, also Kinesiotaping, would be something to consider, for a period of time. But you probably need someone who really knows how to apply it. What I also like for sports injuries are enzymes to take orally. That helps with the recovery. Here in Europe, I would recommend “Wobenzym”. I don’t know where you are from, but you will find something similar all over the world.
    With endurance training, you can be creative. It’s the best time to try something new and work on weaknesses. I like Steve’s idea with the rowing (the question is if you have access?).
    Looks like the triathletes understand each other;-) It wouldn’t come to my mind that sbr stands for swim bike run. That’s probably because I can only run;-)

    have a quick recovery, but take your time!

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