Back of the ankle (achilles) pain

It’s been nearly 2 months since I bought my first unicycle (24"). On the 2nd week of learning how to ride, I sprained my right ankle inwards. I started riding again after a week, and only once or twice a week to let my ankle heal.

Recently I’ve been getting a sore achy feeling from the back of my ankle. The first thing that came to mind was that ankle sprain. But I did some research (google) and found out that it is from the Achilles tendon.

I am able to ride for over 10km now, and I suspect that the constant use of back pressure as a way to slow down/balance is causing this. A month ago I changed from 150mm cranks to 125mm ones.

Coming from mountain and road bicycles, I’ve gotten into the habit of using the balls of my foot. However, in this video by Unigeezer, he uses the arches of his feet instead.

I’ve did some searching and it seems that most of the results were about doing drops, or hopping. I’m more concerned about normal riding. Have anyone had similar experiences? I would love to hear your thoughts about this. :slight_smile:

Yep, same thing - sore Achilles (or something right near or behind it) after I started riding uni last year then I switched to riding on the arches. My right ankle has been badly sprained a few times and mildly many more times. When I get on the MTB after a spell, it feels like I’m riding on my tip-toes in comparison. My weak ankle is weak in both the side-to-side and front-to-rear directions and riding on my arches really minimizes the torque on it especially on the drops (I don’t go big, though, just enough to clear obstacles on the trail). I wear hard braces with pivots for side-to-side protection.

With the smaller crank throws, I don’t think I’m losing any muscle elongation by removing my ankle from the equation, either- I may be gaining back some efficiency because of this, actually. I run 165’s on the 24" muni (I like to climb) and 125’s on the street 29’r.

When you sprained your ankle, what did you do while recovering? I’m considering not riding at all for 2 weeks.

I wasn’t riding anything on a regular basis at the time so really all I did was use a crutch for a couple weeks and let it heal on it’s own. I still get the occasional tweak but now have a decent instinct to just collapse when I feel it start to fold.

The worst one gave me a black-and-blue streak from my pinky toe to halfway up my calf. It was nasty, I stepped into an unfinished jacuzzi to inspect it and didn’t see that the step had a tilt to it right where I stepped - it bent over so far that I bruised the knob on the outside of my ankle on the ground.

If it were to happen to me now, I don’t think I’d uni much until it regained a lot of strength and stability back since mounting and UPD’s can put a lot of unpredictable stress on it. Bike riding with higher-cadence and low force is probably about the best exercise you can do and not lose pedaling fitness.

I’ve stopped riding for a week now. Plan to rest for a month, but we shall see.

I think the sprain has healed, but it’s stiff. I can have full range of motion e.g. drawing the alphabet in the air. But when I squat on it, the dorsiflexion (upwards bending of the foot) makes my ankle feel stiff (the whole are to the side and front of the foot).

Did you do any exercises to get it back to normal? I’m doing stretches to get it to be less stiff. It is tempting to go ride, but I’d rather play safe and not lose a future of cycling =/