I just sprained my ankle pretty badly. What can I do to help it heal quicker and what kind of exercises can I do in the meantime?
The first 24 hours are important for icing, rest and elevation to reduce the amount of inflammation. The first goal is to slowly regain a full range of movement. It's important to start rehabilitation exercises as soon as possible, depending on the severity of the sprain.
If you canít do weight bearing exercises, try this: Rotate your ankle and point your toes in different directions, spelling the alphabet with your toes to improve range of motion. You can also use a towel or resistance band to provide a little resistance at the ankle to help build up strength again.
Once you feel comfortable with weight bearing exercises, try this one: Stand against a wall (with your side to the wall) with your sprained foot supported on one side by the wall. Put all weight on that one foot. Start with 5-10 seconds and work your way up to longer times. If you are able to walk on it, take out the hills and inclines if you can, until you don't feel any pain. Taking shorter walks--if you don't feel pain when walking-- is also a good idea.
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