Why Does Ankle Still Feel Weak Months After Sprain?

I sprained my ankle six months ago. It still feels like the ankle could give out from under me at any time. Why is that?



Muscle strength is important in holding a joint steady or stable. But, there are other factors as well. For example, the joint must be able to sense what position it’s in at all times. This helps the body adjust itself over the ankle and keeps us from losing our balance.

The sense of joint position is called proprioception. Most ankle rehab programs include exercises for proprioception. A new study also reported that the muscles that pull the foot and ankle inward (called invertors) are weak after an ankle sprain.

Exercises for ankle sprain usually focus on the muscles along the outside of the ankle called the evertors. However, it may be that weakness of the invertors is the real problem. Consult a physiotherapist if you haven’t been in an ankle rehab program. The therapist can set you up with a program to restore normal ankle function.

Joanne Munn, et al. Eccentric Muscle Strength in Functional Ankle Instability. In Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. February 2003. Vol. 35. No. 2. Pp. 245-250.
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