Five common football injuries(3)-Ankle Sprain
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Five common football injuries(3)
3. Ankle Sprain
The ankle joint consists of the tibia, fibula, calcaneus and talus with three lateral ligaments which help stabilize the joint. Usually, players stepping on the uneven ground and landing on opponents’ foot will result in excessive stretch of the ligament leading to ligament sprain.
Ligament sprains are categorized into 3 grades of severity:
Grade 1: The ligaments are slightly overstretched and there is no significant pain.
Grade 2: Nearly half of ligaments are torn. The injured players have significant pain when walking and decreased muscle strength and flexibility.
Grade 3: Complete rupture of the ligament which means it is torn in 2 parts. The X-ray imaging test is needed to check if any bone fracture. Usually it takes 6 – 12 months to heal.
The signs of ankle sprain are significant swelling and bruising and the pain is one of symptoms when walking.
Apart from rest and ice, electrotherapy like ultrasound is important to help reduce pain and inflammation. Also, patients should perform active ankle stretching at pain free range to prevent joint stiffness.
Strengthening the calf muscle with proprioception training such as single leg stand with weight shifting on bosu and calf raise are the crucial rehabilitation exercises. It can enhance the muscle control ability on the uneven floor to prevent recurrent injury.
Calf strengthening with balance training
Single leg standing with weight-shifting exercise
Calf strengthening exercise