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Ankle Exercises

helping patients to manage their muscle and joint problems

Exercises to Improve your Muscle & Joint Problem

Below are a series of exercises which aim to improve muscle strength and joint movement of the lower limb.

They are provided in 3 different levels of difficulty. 

These exercises are provided to support the exercises provided within the MSK assist app. If you feel that the exercises you have been provided are too difficult or have become too easy, try the exercises below to find the level that suits you. 

Basic Level Exercises

Ankle flexion/ extension

Sitting. Raise the foot to be exercised off the floor. Point the foot/ toes downwards and then pull upwards. Continue for 30 seconds.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Ankle Rotation

Sitting. Raise the foot to be exercised off the floor. Rotate the ankle in both clockwise and counter-clockwise directions. Continue for 30 seconds.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Seated Heel Raises

While seated, raise up onto your toes as you lift your heels off the ground. Hold for 5 secs.
Repeat for 30 secs
The aim is to do 3-5 sets.

Seated Toe Raises

In a seated (or standing) position with your feet on the ground, raise up your forefoot and toes as you bend at your ankle.
Repeat this exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Plantar Fascia Massage (golf ball)

Sitting or standing. Place a golf ball on the floor and place sole of the foot on top of the ball. Slowly roll the ball under the sole of the foot so as to massage the soft tissues.
Continue for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Moderate Level Exercises

Double leg Heel Raise

While standing, raise up onto your toes as you lift your heels off the ground.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Calf Stretch

Stand facing a wall so you can reach it with the palms of your hand. Keep back leg straight & heel on floor, bend the front knee and lean into wall until a stretch is felt in calf.
Hold the stretch for 20/30 seconds.
Repeat the exercise 3-5 times.

One leg balance

Stand on one leg and maintain your balance. Maintain a slightly bent knee on the stance side.
Hold and maintain your balance for 20/30 seconds.
Repeat 3-5 times.

Resisted ankle eversion

Sitting. Place a resistance band around both feet.
Move the foot to be exercised by turning the foot outwards and upwards.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Single Leg Balance (Eyes Closed)

Stand on one leg and maintain your balance. Maintain a slightly bent knee on the stance side. Close your eyes and maintain balance. If necessary stand near a chair or surface to act as support if needed.
Hold and maintain your balance for 20/30 seconds.
Repeat 3-5 times.

Advanced Level Exercises

2 Leg Heel raise off step

While standing on a step with your heels hanging off the edge, raise up onto your toes as you lift your heels up. Position the step in front of a wall if possible to offer support if needed.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Single leg balance - cushion (eyes closed)

Perform this exercise beside something solid (wall, table, worktop) to hold onto if you loose balance.
Stand onto a towel/ cushion. Then lift one foot off the floor and raise arms outwards to help maintain your balance.
Once you feel you are balanced, close you eyes to make the exercise more difficult.
Try to remain balanced for 10-20 seconds.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Single leg Heel Raise

While standing on one leg, raise up onto your toes as you lift your heel off the ground.
Repeat this exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Hop and Balance

Start on two feet. Jump and land on one foot and balance for 2-5 seconds, then jump on to the other foot and again balance for 2-5 seconds.
Repeat the exercise for 30 seconds.
The goal is to do 3-5 sets.

Jogging on the Spot

Jog in place so that you are moving your arms and legs as in a jogging pattern but not moving forward. 
Do 3 sets of 30 seconds each.