Foot,, ankle, lower leg stability and strength

I'm back with another question. When I did PT after my ankle bone spur surgery, a lot of the exercises were focused on stability -- balance on one foot for a minute at a time, balance board, total gym using some sort of pillow or padding that made my foot, ankle, and leg work harder to stabilize, calf stretches with foam roll. Sometimes after these sessions, I would be so sore and stiff for days that I could barely walk across a room. When the original prescription ended, I didn't seek additional therapy, partly because it was so painful and partly because that was right when my mother entered her final decline and then died about 4 months after the surgery. I'm thinking about going back to the doctor, even though it's been so long (almost 2 years), and asking for another referral to PT. I would do that after I get fully vaccinated in a couple of weeks.

In the meantime, I found this:

Can anyone with knowledge weigh in on whether these look like reasonable exercises?

I moved from doing seated exercises to a low impact cardio yesterday, and I'm noticing that the soreness around my ankles seems to be similar to what I had when I was doing PT. Inner ankle behind the protruding ankle bone. That's making me think that this is an area I need to work on strengthening. I've been continuing to count calories and I'm currently down 22.2 pounds from my heaviest weight (which I reached right at Christmas). I want to lose another 30-35 pounds, as I know that the excess weight is making it hard to reach my stability and mobility goals. That loss would put me in the healthy BMI range. The image is from prior to the bone spur removal.



  • claireychn074
    claireychn074 Posts: 1,354 Member
    I typed a reply but it didn’t seem to post so I’ll try again!

    I’m a nutshell, it would be a good idea for you to see a PT / physio if you can. I badly sprained my ankle last year and those exercises certainly look very similar to the ones I was prescribed. But I ended up with all sorts of muscle imbalance from being on crutches and favouring my uninjured leg. I’m still working on resolving those, and I sometimes get referred pain. I have a strength and conditioning coach and he’s got me through this and back into proper training - I would not have had a clue how to do it myself. I didn’t realise that my right glute had got so weak, or that my left ankle had lost mobility, for instance. His exercises and tests are correcting it all for me (with hard work).

    So if you can see someone for a proper assessment, I think it would be be safest path (and probably the quickest too) to proper mobility.
  • Cherimoose
    Cherimoose Posts: 5,209 Member
    The first few exercises are basic rehab exercises and should be fine, if they're the right difficulty level for you (which i don't know). I wouldn't do the 2 advanced exercises without a PT's approval. For the others, short, frequent sessions are best - for example, 1 minute every 2 hours.
  • rosebarnalice
    rosebarnalice Posts: 3,488 Member
    edited April 2021
    I had ankle replacement surgery, and my PT involved many of the types of exercises you describe in your original post, but when I complained of soreness, she recommended using a chair or a door frame to stabilize my balance (fingertips only-- no grabbing!). That was six years ago, and I still do things like stand on one leg while brushing my teeth, and I STILL need to stabilize with fingertips on the doorframe when standing on my bad ankle (although I can balance pretty well on the good one).

    From the video, I do something similar to the alphabet ankle exercise, and the marching form drill should be fine, but I would be wary of the hopping exercises.
  • Whatsthemotive
    Whatsthemotive Posts: 145 Member
    Thank you. And rosebarnalice, I have been told I needed an ankle replacement. I had bone spur removal to put it off for a while.