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Ankle Injury and it’s Grades, Causes, Symptoms, Precautions, and Recovery

Ankle injury is the most common injury across all sports. How does it occur, it’s various grades, causes, precautions, and symptoms. Also, know about Post-injury rehab and the recovery process.

Minlun Sat
Last updated: 07.06.2020
Ankle Injury and it’s Grades, Causes, Symptoms, Precautions, and Recovery | Sports Social Blog

Ankle injury is the most common injury across all sports. It is also the most frequently recurring injury that takes place with day-to-day activities. Now, with this injury being so common many times people tend to rush back into playing a sport or their everyday activity without proper care. The frequentness of the injury is usually because of negligence.

Anatomy of Ankle

How does it occur? 

Well, various tendons and ligaments that allow for a certain amount of flexibility hold the ankle together. Now, when there is excessive pressure forced on the ligaments through twists, roll, and stretch. When this happens, the severity is varied depending on the kind of pressure the ligaments in the ankle go through. Apart from sports activities, an ankle injury can also occur by tweaking it on uneven surfaces, an awkward positional displacement, and forcible pressure while stepping. 

We can categorize them according to the severity like:


1. Grade 1: Ankle strain through minimal pressure due to a stretch or an awkward tweak to the ligaments. This causes swelling and can be treated using various home remedies and recovery procedures.

2. Grade 2: The severity is more because of a minimal tear in the ligament and the uneasiness of everyday activity is affected.

3. Grade 3: The last category requires extensive medical care, which is usually surgery. The rehab and recovery process takes longer.

How Ankle sprains is caused

Prevention is better than cure is a great statement but when it comes to ankles you can never be too careful because even the slightest tweak can cause a strain.


For a better understanding of the injury let’s talk about the symptoms, pre-injury, and post-injury recovery processes.


  • Symptoms of Ankle Injury:


1. A popping sound when the injury occurs

2. Inability to bear weight on the affected ankle

3. Intense pain depending on the severity of the injury

4. Swelling or bruising

5. In severe ankle sprains, there can be instability

6. The normal flexibility of the ankle decreases


  • Pre Injury Precautions:

1. Make sure to warm-up well before any activity.

2. Specific conditioning exercises for the ankle.

3. Make sure to wear shoes that are specifically designed for the sport.

4. The soles of a shoe, when worn out, must be replaced.

5. Avoid using shoes that have caused you to tweak your ankle.

6. Avoid running on uneven surfaces.

7. Be aware and avoid repeating a past injury prone workout or exercise

8. When the body feels even the slightest irritation, make sure to take a break

9. Your body knows its breaking point so listen to it


  •  During Injury Precautions:

  1. Initial days do not risk walking and putting pressure on the injured ankle

  2. Do not do any heavy-duty exercises or work

  3. Make sure to constantly follow the medical and work out plan

  4. Compressed dressing with bandage or ankle support tapes to immobilize it

  5. The first 48 hours, the ankle needs to be rest on soft cushion about heart levels for good circulation

  6. Constant icing and soft massaging to help the swelling decrease must be done

  7. For Chronic ankle sprain make sure to use crutches for support while moving around.

  • Post Injury Rehab:

1. Slow-motion exercise: The flexibility of the ankle post-injury will need time and the exercise has to be precise to avoid injury again.

2. Strengthening Exercises: The best way to strengthen your ankle is by doing exercise underwater and there are varied workouts that can be done.

Various exercises in post-injury rehab (Source: Very Well Health)

3. Balance workout: Ankle deals with a lot of bodyweight distribution and to help the recovery process understand the distribution, the balancing exercise is important.

4. Agility and Body Mechanics: Agility puts a lot of strain on the ankle and for this to not cause future injury the post injury agility work out must be slow and paced. Body mechanics deals with shifting and grounding of weight and the slow side-to-side ankle break exercises must be done under supervision.

5. Slow Running: gradually move to slow-paced running. This will allow the ankle to take the weight and pressure of compression on the ligaments and tendons.

6. Weight Squats: As the pain reduces and the flexibility of the ankle reaches normalcy, move to squats and gentle dynamic exercises with weights and these can be squats, lunges, one-foot skips, etc.

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