Our feet and ankles are remarkable structures that play a crucial role in our daily lives.. There are a number of bones, joints, ligaments and tendons that all function together to make the ankle joint work efficiently. Unfortunately if we have injury to any of these structures, or they are not functioning correctly, we can develop pain and long term issues affecting our activity. They support our body weight, enable us to move, and provide stability. Yet, they often don’t get the attention they deserve until a problem arises. To maintain an active and pain-free lifestyle, it’s essential to take care of your feet and ankles. In this article, we’ll explore some tips and practices to help you keep these vital body parts healthy.
Help manage a wide range of foot and ankle pain or injuries. The aim of orthotic therapy is to help correct biomechanical factors. These biomechanical factors refer to the way that the muscles and joints function as you walk and run. When there is an injury, weakness or deformity present, these factors put extra stress and strain on the feet.
Exercise Your Feet and Ankles
Exercise is key to strengthening all areas of the body, including ankle joints.
Wall-based heel cord stretches, calf raises or using a resistance band to stretch your calf and to point and flex your toes.Before training, lightly stretch to warm up. A moderate two minute jog will also help. Increase the time of your exercise as you become stronger, but don’t overdo it.
Stretching exercises that focus on the calf muscles, Achilles tendon, and plantar fascia can help prevent conditions like Achilles tendinitis and plantar fasciitis. Consult with a physiotherapist for guidance on specific stretches and exercises suitable for your needs
Maintain Good Posture
Proper posture is essential for overall body alignment, including the feet and ankles. Practice good posture by keeping your shoulders back, chest up, and feet aligned with your hips when standing or walking. This helps distribute your body weight evenly and reduces the risk of developing foot and ankle problems.
Understand the Difference Between Fractures and Sprains
If you do injure yourself, make sure you find the right care. If your pain is bearable, you can manage the injury at home with over the counter medications and by following RICE:
Icing your ankle for up to 20 minutes every two to four hours until swelling starts to subside
Compressing the ankle by wrapping it an elastic bandage
Elevating the foot and ankle
Your body knows best. Listen to it! If you have any pain during activity, stop immediately. At Don Kelly Physiotherapy & Acupuncture, we understand that foot and ankle pain can have a significant impact on your daily life, and we will work with you to develop a treatment plan specific to your needs. The proper diagnosis is paramount in determining the most effective treatment plan for your individual condition.
Here are some products that may assist you with the exercises and advice we prescribe in our clinic.