Ankle Sprains: how can you recover from them?

Ankle sprains are way more common in the summer and a lot of people come to us for physiotherapy for them. Sometimes you don’t have access to physiotherapy or its just a little bit too far away. How can you come back from an ankle sprain yourself?

One of the hardest things to do when recovering from an ankle sprain is getting the ankle strong again. Since the goal is to be able to do everyday tasks again, we wanted to give you a step by step plan on how to strengthen after an ankle sprain.



  • The ankle has a certain amount of side to side movement but what we’re looking for is the stability to be able to do this
  • The reason why is every time you walk at some point you’ll be on one leg and we don’t want to put added stress if the ankle already isn’t doing well

Test #1: single foot balance

  • If you have an ankle sprain it’s generally the smaller muscle on the side of the ankle that need to be strengthened
  • This is a way we can build that up
  • Here Vanessa is standing on one leg with her other knee slightly balancing (Vanessa is a dancer and VERY good at this)
  • If you can stand without having to re-adjust for 30 second you can and should probably move onto something more challenging

Test #2

  • This is basically the same as the last test but with an added difficulty of an uneven surface
  • You can do this with a pillow or a mat; anything that feels like your whole weight isn’t distributed through your whole foot evenly
  • To make this more difficult all you need to do is increase the height of whatever you’re standing on
    • I.e if you’re standing on a pillow add a second one

That is our step progression for coming back from an ankle sprain! We also have a video here about shin splints which go hand in hand with ankle sprains.

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Christina Prevett