Strengthening My Ankles

Hey, I’ve been doing some drops, probably none more than 30 inches and stuff and my ankles hurt a bit some times. I’m pretty sure I just need to do some exercises to strengthen them up though. As far as I know there’s nothing drastically wrong with my technique, but it’s not perfect. But really I still need to make them stronger.

I was wodnering if anyone knew any exercises you should do if you want to strengthen them. I think I remember someone saying something about squats with waits but I’m not sure.

Thanks guys!

Actually they say that balancing on one foot with your eyes closed is a great ankle excersize. I have known people to do that for physical therepy. It might not be the most strenuous excersize, but sounds like more fun than squats.

If the pain is in the joints it is possible that nothing will help, BUT…
When I was between 15-18 years old I had some problems with running on hard surface. Nowadays those problems are gone. I think it has something to do with stronger muscles supporting the knee, so it might be possible for you to get same results on the ankle with some training. That eyes-closed-standing-on-one-leg-thingy sounds like it might work. You could try some weight training too.

Zia, squats are really nice. A lot of weight on the shoulders and squat until you almost throw up. The feeling after that is sooooo good. Especially if your not able to walk well after that it really is a great feeling. Stairs are your enemy after doing squats well.
“No pain - No gain” :slight_smile:

Lots of walking in the woods with low-cut shoes. Take your time at first not to turn your ankles.

Thanks guys, I’m sure this will help alot. I’ll see if I can work my way up to 5 minutes with my eyes closed on one foot. And some squats aswell with weights.

Thanks again!

Learn back summersaults!!! they strengthen the ankles because the amount of time you land on them badly :slight_smile: Just try dropping from high places onto your feet.


Uh… that doesn’t work. My dad used to jump off boats, very high up and all that did was screw them up. This was over a lot of time, it just screwed them.

Um, this seems to obvious, but no one has posted it.

>Slide your feet forward on the pedals before taking drops.<

I was being serius with the back sumi thing, my ankles are like rock now :slight_smile: I find when I do drops on uni I just have my feet in normal position.


Oh yeh He tells you how to do a back summersault in the Tutorials things :slight_smile: alot more that I do :slight_smile:


Quite right. The only time I’ve hurt my ankles during drops is when my foot has been too far back on the pedal, and the ligaments haven’t been able to take the strain.

Yes, I’ve done that and I found it helps but I still havn’t gone any higher than 30 inches. I think I just have really weak ankles. Oh well, what a shame.

I did 2 things with my eyes closed. Got 3 minutes on each foot until it started to hurt alot, although I now have doubts about whether it’s strengthening my ankles as it never hurts there, oh well it’s probably doing wonders for my balance.

Now all I need to do are find some weights I actually can do squats with.

I don’t think it would hurt your ankle to stand on one foot. What you want to do is strengthen the muscle. Stand on one foot and feel the muscles around your ankle, they are all very tense. I think it would be a good way to strengthen your ankles.

Something that strengthens your ankles is skating with a hockey boot. Hockey boots have little ankle support, compared to most other skates which go way up and tightly wrap around your ankle. They are this way so you can turn quickly. If you have never worn them before your feet wobble all over the place and you will have difficulty keeping your feet straight, instead of bending to the side.

What about hopping on one foot? Should strengthen the muscles.

Yeah standing on one foot won’t hurt it, but I’m jsut saying it probably isn’t the fastest way. As for hockey boots, I don’t even skate right now, hard to find a palce in Australia.

But hopping on one foot? It’ so simple. I’ll give it a go and get back to you. But I still reckon squats will be the best, once I find a weight I’ll get back to you all on that.

Do the muscles or the joint hurt?

I think it’s the joint. It’s only for a split second when I do the drop and then it goes away and I feel nothing, so I don’t think it’s the muscle. But it just puts me off wanting to do it again, makes me less confident also because I’m scared I’m gonna really screw it one day.

About 4 months ago I did a good big jump on a BMX but there was a drop off at the bottom of the down ramp and I was outta control on landing and my foot slipped off on the drop and whacked my foot backwards when it made contact with the ground.

Since (about) then I’ve been doin a lot of uniing and whenever I do drops or sometimes when I hit the bottom of a set of stairs… and even sometimes when I’m just braking too hard with too much momentum against my foot I reinjure myself.

It’s not too bad coz I can usually get back on the uni within a minute or two (or 3) after the pain subsides and my foot feels fine again.

It’s annoying though and I’d gone for about 2 weeks without it happening until yesterday when I was tryin some big drop/steep roll sections and it ended up bein one of the more agonising times that it’s happened (maybe it’s getting worse?).

Can you even describe this “feet too far back on the pedals” flex thing as being an ankle injury?

Anyway, the reason I clicked “reply” was that I was gonna say to Robbie that doing an exercise where you slowly go from standing to standing on tippy toes and back down (without a uni) might be a good way of targeting those muscles/tendons/ligaments/whatever they are in there that need strengthening?

… not that I’ve actually tried doing that exercise, perhaps I should do that.


Thanks alot I’m gonna try them all and see which ones work the best.

I still havn’t done squats, or the one pete suggested, but the best so far is what my physiotherapist taught me about a year ago to loosed my calf muscles as they were very tight.

Basically you foot is flat on the ground start about the width of your shoe away from a wall and bend your knee towards the wall. If that’s easy (that’s actually about the best I can do, it’s poor) just start moving further away. I believe if your foot was in a bad position on the pedal and you did a big drop it would sort of be like this, so I think this will help.

Maybe you should go see a doctor or some similar person who can tell you for sure. If it really is the joint it might never be really good, but you can make it feel better. Stnading on one foot with your eyes closed and grabbing the other foot with hand at the same time is a good exercise. Some kind of balance board, like this is also really nice. Stand on it onefooted and roll it around without letting the sides touch the ground. It improves balance and makes your muscles around the ankle stronger.

Even though squats are nice they are not so good exercise for ankles. They are mainly used to make your muscles above your knee stronger. You can easily ruin your back by doing squats if your technique isn’t correct. Squats with heavy weights put a lot of abuse on the spine and muscles supporting it. That little exercise Pete mentioned is also good for your calves and ankles. You can do that on one foot and with weights too. It’s even better if you put something under the ball of your foot so that you have to rise a little higher.

I broke my ankle almost two years ago, and had phisical therapy to regain the strength and some good things to do are, lots of stretching because if your mobility is good you are way less likely to injur anything, work on your forward mobility of your ankle, which is mostly related to your calf muscles; The balancing excercizes are good, standing on one foot on something unstable like an almost deflated ball or trampoline, no need to close your eyes; another good one is to stand on one foot holding on to a counter or something and lift up and down on the ball of your foot and do this as many times as you can can until you can do this several hundred times. Good luck, Dan