In the previous blog post, the Arlington podiatrists at AllCare Foot & Ankle Center gave you tips on how to deal with pesky sprained ankles that can interrupt your healthy and active lifestyle. In this blog, we’ll give you a few tips on how to keep your ankles healthy and avoid sprained ankles altogether.

Stretch before and after exercise.

If you’re into running or sports that involve running or changing direction quickly, pre-exercise stretching is a must. By keeping your ankles and feet flexible and strong, you’ll reduce the likelihood of developing foot and ankle injuries that can keep you out of the game, and you’ll speed up recovery time if any foot or ankle problems occur.

There are a number of stretches that can improve the health and mobility of your ankles and feet, so talk to your Arlington podiatrist or hop onto YouTube for some stretching ideas. Healthy stretching is a must for all muscle groups and all exercises, so stretch everything out and keep yourself active!

Wear ankle-friendly footwear.

For sports like soccer and basketball, quick, lateral movements are essential for peak performance and athletic success. But with lateral movement comes a risk for ankle injuries—particularly ankle sprains.

Wearing shoes with high ankle support, or using athletic ankle braces underneath your shoes or cleats, can help stabilize your ankles during physical activity; allowing you to turn corners and change direction without twisting or folding your ankles.

Ankle injuries are one of the most common injuries in general, so why risk your mobility and health? Grab a brace and support your ankles—and they will support you.

Build your ankle strength.

While ankle sprains are not entirely preventable, you can strengthen your ankles (and the areas around the ankle) for a lower likelihood of ankle injury. One of the best ankle-strengthening exercises is the “Toe Towel” exercise: First, sit down in a chair and place a hand towel beneath your feet. Put a bare foot on the towel, pressing your heel to the ground. Keep your heel in a stationary position for the duration of the exercise. Starting with your pinky toe, contract your toes in order to bunch the towel beneath your foot, and slowly pull the towel beneath the chair in an inward fashion (pretend you’re moving your pinky toe inward toward your big toe). Repeat this motion 10 times, then switch to the other foot. Alternate feet until your feet are tired.

Stop by your Arlington podiatrist!

If you’re in need of more ways to strengthen your ankles or prevent ankle injuries, talk to the friendly staff members at AllCare Foot & Ankle Center! We’re happy to help you with your foot and ankle needs in any way we can, whether it’s to heal your sprained ankle or give you tips for long-term foot and ankle health. With friendly, experienced staff members and locations in Arlington and Dallas, you’ll always have expert podiatrists and medical professionals at your disposal. Get started and schedule an appointment with AllCare Foot & Ankle Center today!