Hi everyone, today I want to talk you through 5 quick and easy exercises that can help your ankle arthritis.
I usually do these exercises in the morning in an effort to alleviate the morning stiffness in the joint.
#1 The calf raise
Perhaps the most effective exercise for me.
The calf raise, as the name suggests, strengthens and builds your calf muscle. This is a muscle that a lot of people can find difficult to grow.
When having arthritis in the ankle joint as I have, I find the stronger your leg is the less pain and stress is put through the arthritic joint.
It is a case of building up the muscles around the effected joint in order to compensate for the restricted movement.
The calf raise can help with this.
The calf raise can be done by standing with feet shoulder width apart and raising up on to your tiptoes. Once on your tiptoes hold the position for a few seconds before slowly lowering your heels back to the floor.
You can do this on one leg by raising the other foot off the ground just remember to hold on to something if your balance isn’t the great, mine isn’t.
You can also do this by standing on the lip of your stairs, this adds greater resistance to the exercise as your heels will dip below the position of your toes when lowering on the lip.
As you progress and become comfortable doing more repetitions, you can add more resistance by holding a little dumbbell, or something of weight whilst performing the exercise.
#2 Wall press
In simple terms, imagine doing a press-up stood up against a wall rather than laid on the floor.
Stand in front of the wall with your palms flat against it, legs shoulder width apart, press through your arms so you move towards the wall as you would move towards the floor when performing a normal press-up.
Keep your legs straight and feet flat on the floor during the move.
As with the calf raise you can perform it on one leg when you are more comfortable.
#3 Wall squat
A difficult exercise I have found.
Stand with your back flat against the wall and lower yourself down the wall in to the squat position. You need to keep your feet flat on the floor as you lower yourself.
Therein lies the problem.
When you have an arthritic ankle with little to no movement as I do it is incredibly challenging to keep the foot flat to the floor when lowering in to the squat position.
I tend to find my heel starts to raise during the manoeuvre.
I do try to continually attempt the move and I would advise that you do as well. Especially for those of you that still have some movement there, this exercise could be beneficial for maintaining or even improving that.
The lunge is a good leg strengthening exercise that is fairly easy to master.
Start standing, take a large step forward and lower your body so both knees are bent. Your front knee should be directly above your ankle and keep your lowered back knee just off the floor.
Remember when performing the exercise to keep your back straight, head up and engage your core.
As with any exercise, if your form isn’t correct there really isn’t much point in doing it.
Like the other exercises you can add resistance by using dumbbells or other weights. I would suggest mastering the technique and form first, as with all the exercises.
For those of you who have read my product reviews and other posts, it will be no surprise that this one makes the list.
You think of lower body exercise you of course think of cycling. I have mentioned that I use a foot bike every morning to ease the stiffness in my ankle and to get me moving.
Cycling is great exercise for strengthening the legs and it is low-impact as well which is beneficial for us arthritis sufferers.
Isn’t all exercise good for us? Not necessarily.
Due to the fact we have arthritic joints it is considered a better and safer option to perform low-impact exercise, for instance cycling, swimming, yoga, tai chi.
High-impact exercise that can involve jumping and explosive movements, can increase the chances of an arthritic flare up, as you are putting more stress through the joint.
Remember to be comfortable performing the move, have someone there to assist you or hold on to something for balance if needed.
As with anything the more you do it the better you will become!
Just remember to listen to your body you know better than anyone how it is feeling and responding!
For anyone who wants to read about the foot bike I use I have included the link here.
If you enjoyed the article like and share and as always be great to hear from you!