Further to my blog post ‘Ankle Strength Importance’, here are some exercises for you to try to help strength the lower limbs.
Balance board stand
Begin by standing on the wobble board on two feet. Find your balance and gentle rock the board backward and forward. Progress this exercise by circling the board so that the edge of the board remains in contact for a full circle. Once you have mastered standing on two legs, move to one leg. You can repeat the same exercises as before. If you feel too unstable then partially hold onto a wall until you feel more comfortable.
Lunge on balance board
Only perform this exercise once your lunge pattern is correct. Place one foot in the middle of a balance board and the other behind as if you are performing a normal lunge. Perform a normal lunge movement. This will feel more challenging due to stabilising the movement of the front leg. Perform 3 sets of 6 reps on each leg.
Although a very basic and unexciting exercise, the theraband can help to strengthen the ankle from the beginning. Using a strength suited to you and loop the band around your toes so that you can perform plantarflexion, dorsiflexion, inversion and eversion. Try performing 3 sets with reps of 10-12.
Setup a row of hurdles placing them a few feet apart. Begin by performing this exercise on two feet. Stand in front of the first hurdle with feet shoulder width apart. This will be the starting position. Push off both feet to jump over the first hurdle. Land on two feet, bending the knees, rebounding out and over the next hurdle. Finish by pausing in the ready position (1/4 squat) for a count of two.
SL balance and catch
With a partner grab yourself a tennis ball and stand a few feet away from each other. Each stand on one leg and pass the tennis ball between you with an aim to challenge the other persons balance by throwing the ball outside of their body. Makes sure you remember to swap legs.
Note: you can also do this exercise against a wall.
Split leg bench squat
Stand in front of a bench or low object. Hold both arms out at shoulder height in front of you and reach one leg into the air. Sit back onto the object as slowly as you can. To stand, engage your core, transfer your weight forward and drive your weight through your foot.
See the exercises in action below –
Drop me a comment to let me know how you get on!