Written by: Melanie Talastas-Soriano BA-Kin, CAT(C), ISSA-CPT
Athletic Therapist, Personal Trainer
Winter season can be very cold and very slippery. The combination of cold temperature and fluffy snowfall can cause slippery roads and sidewalks. Driving and walking can be affected when the ground is slippery. Few cases this winter we heard of people/clients who unfortunately had fallen and broke their ankles. Even if you are careful, accident happens however, dealing with the stress on the body can be tough on anyone. This is how we can help you.
Here are three points on what to do when you find out that you had fractured your ankle.
Number ONE: Seek medical help immediately.
If you know for sure that you broke a bone or bones after slipping and falling outside, go to the closest emergency hospital. Unbearable pain or unable to move your foot/lower leg is an indication that it might be broken. Also, if you heard snap crackle or pop at the time of the accident that means something is or could be broken. I mentioned hospital because they can give you pain medication whereas if you had gone to PanAm first, they may have just advised you to go to the hospital/emerge. To confirm fracture, an X-ray would be done. Of course, you’re going to need someone to drive you there.
Number TWO: Seek the help of an Athletic Therapist to help you get through your injury on your way to recovery. Fast forward to confirming a fracture and perhaps done with the surgery, your doctor would have cleared you to start rehabilitation to improve your ankle joint function.
What to expect when you see an Athletic Therapist?
- Your injured limb will be assessed, meaning you will be expected to move the joint that is affected (ankle joint, knee joint or foot).
- Modalities can be use like heat, ice or which modality is necessary.
- Expect that the Athletic Therapist will do hands on treatment like massage, soft tissue release techniques to flush residual swelling and create good environment around the injured area.
- Expect to have a home program.
Number THREE: Simple and effective rehabilitation exercises can also be called as “home program” can help with muscle atrophy. Small foot or ankle movement is better than no movement at all. Starting with beginner exercises using small intrinsic muscles of the foot can help with the overall goal. The goal should be, weight bearing with no pain and walking as normally as you can before you got injured.
Let’s start with these non-weight bearing exercises:
- Towel crunches
- Actively moving your toes (flex, extend and splay)
- Complete the alphabet using your ankle joint
- Calf stretch using a robe or a belt
The full exercise prescription / home program parameters can vary from person to person. It is also between you and your therapist on how often and how long you do these exercises. If you know someone that needs Athletic Therapy treatment, send them our way so we can help improve their quality life.
We hope that you keep safe for the remaining of winter and enjoy the outdoors. For more exercise and rehab tips please visit our website at www.insahyu.com
Written by: Taylor Post CAT(C)
Certified Athletic Therapist
Mini Bands have recently gained popularity in the fitness world due to their versatility and effectiveness to build both strength and stability. Made of wide, flat elastic formed in to small loops, mini bands usually. They usually come in packs of 3-5 loops, with different resistances represented with individual colours. They are also inexpensive and extremely portable, making them a great way to workout at home or while traveling. Your local gym may also have a set as part of their equipment available for you to use.
Whether you are new to working out or have wanted to try adding mini bands into your regular fitness program, here are some exercises to help get you started:
1. Mini Band Squat
Place the mini band around legs (just above your knees) and then step into your squat position (feet approximately shoulder width apart). For comfort, the band should be flat against your legs. To initiate the squat, press your butt back and sit down until your thighs are parallel to the ground. Be sure to keep your weight in your heels (can wiggle your toes) and your chest up nice and tall. Push out against the band and do not let your knees collapse in as you squat down. Finally drive back up through your heels and return to a standing position. Repeat 3 sets of 10-20 repetitions.
2. Lateral Walk
Place the band just above each ankle and wrapped around both legs. Again, make sure the band is flat, not bunched. Start with your feet shoulder width apart and your knees bent slightly. Keeping your core tight, step left with your left leg. Then follow with your right leg, but try to avoid bringing your feet together—you want to keep some tension on the band. Continue walking left, one foot at a time, moving slowly and maintain the half-squat position (low and controlled). After travelling 10-15 steps (or another pre-determined distance), switch so that you are leading with the other leg.
3. Banded Knee Drive
Start by standing with the band around both legs at ankle height. Drive your right knee up as if you are going to sprint forward, bringing your left hand up for added power. Your right hand will naturally drop back to keep your balance. Pause at the top of the movement before bringing your foot back down. Focus on maintaining a square and balanced stance throughout the movement. You can either repeat 10-15 repetitions using the same leg, and then switch. Or perform 20-30 alternating knee drives. Try and complete 3 sets.
4. Glute Bridge
Begin by lying face up on the floor, with knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Place your mini band around your thighs, just above your knees. Keep your arms at your side with palms down. Lift your hips off the ground until your knees, hips and shoulders form a straight line. As you lift press your knees out against the resistance of the band. Squeeze those glutes hard and keep your abs drawn in so you don’t overextend your back during the exercise. Pause at the top of the movement before lowering yourself back down to the starting position. Repeat 3 sets of 10-15 repetitions.
5. Bicycle Crunch
For this exercise you will have the mini band around your feet. While lying face up, position your hips and knees flexed at ninety degrees so that your lower legs are parallel to the floor. Next, place your fingers on the sides of your forehead. Lift your shoulders off the floor and hold them there, this will help engage your abdominal muscles. Twist your upper body to the right as you pull your right knee in until it touches your left elbow. Simultaneously straighten your left leg. Return to the starting position and repeat to the opposite side. Remember to keep the movement slow and controlled. Aim for 3 sets of 20-30 repetitions (10-20 per side).
6. Triceps Extension
Start by holding one end of the band in each hand. Next anchor your left hand (and the band) in the centre of your chest. Make a fist with your right hand and then bend your right elbow to ninety degrees. Slowly press your right hand toward the floor, fully extending your elbow and squeezing through your triceps. Pause, and then reverse the move. Make sure to stand tall, keep your shoulders back and bend your knees slightly to activate your core. Perform 10-15 reps on each arm, for 3 rounds.
7. Banded Push Ups
Adding a mini band during a push up is a great way to challenge the stability of the movement. Place the band around both arms, just above the wrist. Get yourself into a high plank position, with your hands under your shoulders and abs tight. Your legs should be extended straight out behind you, with your weight in the balls of your feet. Splay your fingertips and keep your hands far enough apart to keep tension on the band. Keep your core tight and your glutes engaged as you lower down until your chest touches the ground. Then press back up to return to the start position. If you are not strong enough to do a full push-up, lower yourself down to the floor slowly but then use your knees to push yourself back up. Complete 3 sets of 10 repetitions.