how to fix a sprained ankle.

this is my take on ankles. specifically sprained ankles. I’m not talking little tweaks either. I’m talking fully rolled ones, that swell up pretty much instantly (verging on dislocation) and/or completely ripping all tissues and tendons, causing bruising that starts going up the back of your leg (as well as everywhere else) and feels like you’ve broken your foot. Yeah, those are the best aren’t they?

Y’see the thing with rolling ankles is once you’ve established there’s no bone damage, there’s nothing more you can do to wreck them. Everything from the point of ‘rolling’ is the bodies way of healing. Once you are aware of this, your mental approach to your injury will change from ‘I’m out of action, and can’t do anything’ to ‘this is annoying, I’ll just go and fix it’. Sadly, the thing that stops us doing anything other than resting and icing is professional advice…. grrrrrr …. and my Dr is useless so I rarely visit and listen to him.

Dr’s will tell you to ‘ice-up and rest’ and there’s nothing more they can do for it. Fine, however that is also the same words of advice they offer an 85yr old person as they do a 15yr old person. This is useless to active people. We need to get back in action asap. There’s a lot you can do to get that fully rolled ankle working in probably a quarter of the time, most Dr’s claim it will take.

first understand what’s happened to your foot;
The tissues, have torn, the ankle is trying to protect itself and start healing by swelling up, allowing zero movement, until the bruising can come out. The ankle is damaged, the tissue cools and starts locking up the foot. Once you’ve established there’s no bones broken, you can start to reverse the damage.

Here’s what you do;

Always stand on it.
Stop being a moaning lightweight and complaining that ‘it hurts’. Its just pain, ignore it. Training your brain to accept that this is ‘good healing pain’, is the way forward. If like me, you’re always active,  then suddenly being reduced to a wobbly cripple, because one of your joints decided to give way, then you’ll know the importance of being able to walk properly, like there’s no injury at all. Therefore, dump the crutches, stop hopping, and start walking like a normal human being again. It’ll take a while, but start as early as possible… Unless my foot is pointing the wrong direction, or worse then i’m walking out. none of that ‘hopping’ rubbish.

(you’ll notice i’m not being very sympathetic here? well thats because sympathy never healed anything)

never stop moving it
If you’re sat at a desk all day, keep rotating the foot, ignore the swelling, there’s nothing you can do about that, just get yourself a super sloppy pair of comfy ‘mid-height’ shoes (iPaths are perfect btw) and get used to it. next!

hot and cold
ice the foot to bring out the bruising, and heat the foot to keep the tissue soft and supple. Get an ice-pack on it, then get it in a hot bath straight away. For one of my worst injuries, I spent 2 days doing this continually. By the third day I was back at work and walking pretty good.

Standard movement isn’t enough, we’re athletes right? we need full movement in all our joints. Sure its going to hurt, but don’t be a wuss and wimp out on me. Take pain killers, smoke weed, do whatever you’ve gotta do to block out the pain, but push your ankle movements to the limit. Ignore the swelling, that’s just a pain in the ass, stretch the foot out in every direction as much as possible. Even if you get tears of pain, ignore that and keep pushing it. Tears are the bodies way of moaning. Ignore it.

Ta-daa. that’s it. nothing more to do. It can takes aaages to sort out this injury, but it shouldn’t take forever. In a few days: walking, a week: walking properly and being able to jump up and down etc. Note; it’ll take a lot longer to for the swelling to go down. This advice is learned from 20+yrs of rolling ankles on a skateboard, and learning from other skaters about dealing with rolled ankles.

Personally I have gone from a fully rolled, instantly swollen, can’t walk properly, ankle to being back on my board and skating (casually) in a week. So if you’ve anything less than a fully rolled ankle then, you’ll be back in action in no time.

Most people reading this, will think ‘yeah, but you haven’t seen ‘my’ ankle’ … uh-huh… your muscular composition is different to everyone else is it? I don’t think so.

hope this helps :)

BTW – I cannot reply if you comment on someone else’s comment. You need to make a brand new comment at the bottom of the page.

Now read about my recovery from a sprained ankle

btw – This guy (who is a Dr) linked to this blog post for a bit and notice the third bullet, where he advises immobilisation isn’t advised, unless you’re hurting:



Filed under acrobat, breakdancing, free running, Gymnastics, injuries, Martial Arts, Pain, parkour, skateboarding

258 responses to “how to fix a sprained ankle.

  1. LOL… great advice! I’ve sprained both ankles pretty horribly, and what you’ve described is what I usually do to speed up the time to get mobile and active again.

    • Zak Z

      Great advice. I love it. Your ankle is working full-time to heal you so why shouldn’t you be working full time to heal your ankle! None of these Rest Ice crap. Work it till it works. Everytime you feel pain from moving it thats one less spear of pain your gonna feel without his sprain. If your going through hell, keep going. Don’t lay down and elevate your foot!

    • thanks, glad you enjoyed it :)

      • Daisy

        I got a 3rd degree sprain on my ankle in a soccer game about 5 months ago. My achillies tendon really hurts when I planterflex or dorsiflex my ankle. The most sad part about my injury is that I can’t wear heels anymore, every time I try walking in them my ankle makes a popping sound! I was wondering if you or anyone can help me try to fix my ankle. Not just to wear my heels but to get back on the field like before my injury!

      • tracyeggensberger

        I feel so horrible last Monday took my dog out and he saw a cat took off fell and sprained ankle I’m a mess 51years old been off work a week my god can’t
        Bare weight on ankle. I still can’t walk. I fell like I’ve tore tendons fell on left outside of ankle.I’m worried.have research every thing on internet on ankle. I feel .I need advice.Exray said not broke considering mri.HELP

    • gruntler

      Don’t just stretch it. That won’t get rid of the fibrotic “trigger points” (micro-spasms) that develop when you injure yourself and which will become a semi-permanent part of your local musculature. These will contribute to future injuries, even at distant points like the lower back and shoulder (the knee bone is connected to the.hip bone, etc) .. To get rid of them you also need to massage the ankle, calf and foot. You’ll be able to feel the trigger points when you massage them. They are sensitive points and sometimes they are like little nodes or ropes. They hurt. Over time, you can massage them out.

      • Agree on the massage. I forgot to mention that I massage my ankle at any given opportunity. During bathing, in bed, whilst watching TV etc. I’m try not to let the ankle get cold unless I’m freezing it. Thanks for the contribution.

  2. Em

    hmmm… mark, i can see where you’re coming from but i’m not entirely sure i agree with it. yes, you can strap up an ankle pretty well (i have played many a game of rugby having sprained my ankle) but you do need to strap it pretty good to ensure that you allow any healing of tendons/muscles etc. to take place. If you go repeatedly tear the same bits then scar tissue will build up which will be thicker and less flexible than the original and you prevent future movement in it. So yes, carry on using it but make sure you continually ice it (especially straight away) and definitely strap it as tightly as you can. Once the initial brusing and pain has gone then you can manipulate it to get the movement back.
    Hey, trust me, I’m a doctor… ;o)

    • Gabe

      What if the the initial bruising and pain is long gone, but the swelling is still quite visible.. can i start forcing it? I mean, it’s been 22 weeks since i sprained it (second time this year), and have been to three different doctors, have had 2 x-rays, and attended 6 weeks of physical therapy (dropped out because didn’t find it to helpful for the money i was paying.)

      • Gabe

        kinda got carried away there, i meant the money my parents were paying, i kinda felt bad, physical therapy was serious shit.. i’m only 15 and i skate, really wanna get back on my board as soon as possible.. i’m hitting up europe this summer with friends and i would really love some help. Read my other post for more information.. oh and btw, the x-rays showed that i have no bone damage, and the first week of my sprained ankle i went snowboarding and felt absolutely no pain at all, and ever since i beleive that is the reason holding me back from skating.. anyways, i really hope you can reply with some help, because i’m at the point of blowing up..

  3. I like the idea of strapping up the ankle to reduce swelling, but don’t favour it, as I’d rather get full movement back asap (ie: to walk correctly) and deal with the swelling later. I generally don’t strap up an ankle, have had multiple injuries over 20+ yrs, heal quickly and have full movement in both ankles. I’m happy with my solution, it works for me.

  4. LOL. Great article. As I read this I’m sitting on the couch with Ice on my foot. I’m at the one week mark and just finished an hour of training. OUCH. I fully believe in ignoring pain and getting back to work. I once dislocated my knee, finished cleaning up my dojo, and then passed out in the back room where the paying customers couldn’t see. IBUPROFEN to the rescue.

  5. thanks. hey I checked out, is that anything to do with you? it looks really good.

  6. Haha, no I just laughed so hard when I read the article that I had to repost it. I gave credit to tricksession tho. The boxer article is so true, as a really new trickster, I feel as if I have infinite things to learn (and hurt) so I take all the advice I can get. (how do you think I got this nickname????)

  7. Muhannad

    I injured my ankle yesterday and it’s showing all signs of inflammation and pain but I’m an active guy who goes to the gym daily so staying at home is definitely out of the question! Screw doctors…I just read this article while at my desk at work and i’m twisting my ankle six ways to Sunday and all the pain I can muster…I like it.

  8. nice one mate. glad you’re not prepared to sit around moaning. Hope you get back in action soon!

  9. Christine

    Crash I am in the same position as you are, I still can’t stand on my ankle, it’s soo bruised but itches like a son of a you-know-what.
    My Dr NEVER even wrapped it, she just sent me home and told me to put it up and ice it. I was soo upset.
    Well by tuesday I was using my crutches, hopping on one foot, and crawling across the floor to the kitchen for food, water and to let my dog outside.
    Even though crutches are a pain in the butt after awhile of hopping or crawling you will love it when you can use them again, trust me.
    I will try what you said to do, and get back to you on if it worked or not.

  10. Pingback: How to fix a sprained ankle 2 « JumpClub

  11. That is a great article / blog I’ve ever read. I like your advice and I’ve been doing like that but the swollen hadn’t gone away for more than 9 months ago. I mean it’s still a bit swollen than it used to be BIG as baseball.

    One of those day was good for me to walk, and some are not. Thank you so much for posting this. I *thought* I was the only one. haha

  12. yo yo ma

    Good advice duudddee

  13. dannyi81

    Hello, I’m in a similar position with some of you. I got the sprain yesterday and I can’t stay on my ankle. Can anybody tell me how many days may pass until I will be able to move again without crutches?

  14. B boii

    i sprain my ankle badly bout once every 6-8 months. LMAO yer. just looked up if thats gonna be bad for me in the future or somthing, but if im doing no bone damage you sed ill be alright so im confident in that. just wondering is it okay like even if it hurts to hit the board again after a week. i dunno maybe stay away from the kickflips or somthing there just OUCH when come off a sprained ankle injury and back on the board.


    • luisestrada

      this is really good advice thanks for the article…but this is the third time i’ve rolled/twisted my ankle…the swelling has NEVER gone down. is that normal? its gone down some but not all the way compared to my left foot (im goofy) man i just wake up every day and feel like skating i hate this.

      • Gabe

        man i feel you i haven’t skated for 21 weeks because of my ankle, it feels great but still is swollen! i see this was back in 2009, you obviously got passed the ankle injury, any tips?

  15. yeah if you can stand the pain, then sure go for. I think the best exercise for a skaters sprained ankle is to go skating! Just remember you shouldn’t be rolling in agony, and that your ankle will probably feel worse not better the next day.

    btw if you continually sprain your ankle, you will suffer long term damage to the joint. You’ll be better off figuring out ‘why’ you keep hurting tweaking it, and to start changing something now. I think you need to pay more attention to what’s going on down there. Here’s a suggestion…

    It sounds like you have lazy legs, you probably kick the board out really hard to create a flip, but don’t suck it back in fast enough to make sure they are back over the deck, when you are landing. Practice doing loads of short fast kicks in to thin air, extending the leg and retracting it fully back in to your body. Do that many times before you go for a skate and you’ll notice your flip power and control will be much better.

  16. B boii

    LOL yer i probally do have “lazy legs” but the funny thing is i twisted it on a rock chasing my board down a hill after bailing from the trick. thx for the advice i read your continuation of it on how to fix a broken ankle #2 and LOVED! it. im gonna spread the thing bout HIMS insteada RICE cos me and all my mates always used RICE as the way to fix ours. but HIMS works out better to me :) ill get some skater mates of mine to read this article and tell others bout fast skate faster.
    B boii

  17. thanks man, spread the word!

  18. Faisal

    hey, i just sprained my ankle right now playing football, my friend ACCIDENTLY kicked the football on my foot and i fell awkwardly sideways and the pain was agonising. im not sure but i think it could be a sprained ankle. now that ive read your article i hope that this wil help fix my sprain cause ive got a football tournament coming up.wish me luck! p.s im 13 years old.

  19. unlucky mate, that sucks, you’re young tho, so it’ll heal quickly and sort itself out in no time. All the best – mark.

  20. mark watson

    heres a couple of things ive learned the hard way that hopefully will help someone… (for me it takes about 4 – 5 days to completely recover from a sprained ankle)

    I find keeping the joints warmed up when they’re damaged helps to fix it, my theory is that if you’ve torn muscle and it gets cold it’ll contract and either tear the muscle even more or slow down the healing process by keeping the tear under tension.
    Also i find some ‘light’ streching just before going to bed seems to speed things up a bit too.

    its really common sense as far as im concerned, unfortunately most people do the complete opposite by using ice packs and stretching during the day instead of before bed

    yeh hope this helps someone
    ill shut up now

  21. my thoughts exactly. No matter how much i’m told to ice something, it doesn’t feel like the right thing to do, as the next day I can’t move my foot! Give me heat and stretching any day. Thanks for sharing.

  22. alex

    hey ummm k so i kick fliped off this 4 stair and i sprained my ankle like bad i couldn’t even walk for 2 days but after that i started walking and stretching it and standing on it but it still hasn’t healed completely its been a week and 4 days and idk the swelling still hasn’t gone down and when i go skate and i try to do a simple flat ground ollie i get a shooting pain in my ankle and i cnat go through with trying it

    like how long does it take for this to heal cause im so tired of waiting i want to go back to that 4 stair and land
    and ride off this time
    id be cool if someone could give me advice id be much appreciated

  23. has the Dr seen it? if not, he should. Nearly 2 wks is a long time when you’re young, it should be healing good by now. If the Dr has checked it, given it the all clear and its still painful, then its time to start stretching it out. Even if its painful, keep stretching it as much as possible. Also applying heat to get the joint supple again. Thats about all you can do, you gotta be patient and hold back until you’re good again. Sessioning it before its ready will just screw it up more.

  24. Mark is right. Get your ankle moving as quickly as possible. Athletic trainers for top colleges insist on ice only for the first 24-48 hours. Reahabbing a sprained ankle consists of 3 parts –

    1) reducing swelling and pain fast so you can start rehab
    2) Start strengthening supporting muscles and begin to restore range of motion
    3) Protect the injured ankle with a lace up ankle brace and/or taping.

    The trick to moving the injured ankle is to find a way to reduce the swelling and the pain at the same time. Ive experienced complete rehabilitation from a sprained ankle in less than a week at 23 years old. Just recently I showed a 14 year old how to reduce swelling and pain at a national basketball tournament. He was able to play in the championship game only 36 hours after his injury. You can rehab a sprained ankle successfully in less than a week.

    • Keith

      Bret, any chance you can pass some advice my way? This is my first decent ankle roll playing ball. I’ve had them before but the were minor (out a day at most). This one is def worse. I’m very active ballin 3-4 times a week minimum so this is killing me not being able to run them courts. I did the whole ice elevation for first 48 hours. now im using a heat pack then strech a couple times a day. Im able to fully put weight on it with no pain but it does still feel pretty stiff. Anything you can offer would be great! Thanks!

  25. Shade

    Yes you are a very wize man im only 15 and beleive me i would be saying the same thing as you.

  26. B boi

    hey i was just wondering i skate everyday (literately). i last posted a comment last time i twisted my ankle 6 months ago.. reading over you said it will be bad for me if i continually sprain it but i only had a slight sprain today and i only every slightly sprain my ankle (have to look closely to see bruising after swelling has gone down to normal size in 1 maybe 2 days) on an average of every 6-9 months will i still be able to get my ankle back to 100% if i can get rid of stiffness and achieve back to full motion by getting back on it asap.

    and it also sadden me that i could only find two articles (including this one) on other methods of how to fix a sprained ankle. allot of people are ill informed by the rice method.

    been skating for the past 5 years I’m 17 and do have hopes for skating in the future. i hope these slight accidents don’t cripple my hope for making more of a career out of it.

    and if you have not treated a ankle the proper way after spraining it can u still recover from it properly like stretching it out and stuff cos i know friends who have laid on the couch for a month after a sprain and always bitch about there ankles can they still recover from there damage towards there ankle completely because i read somewhere it damages your neuromuscular system. and other places cant recover completely if you haven’t treated right is there other ways of fixing it if you haven’t treated it right within the next 4 months or so..


  27. I’ve sprained my ankle many many times and its still in perfect working order. Luckily the direction most skaters sprain their ankle is the same direction they flick the foot to kickflip, this means we’re continually stretching our muscles and tendons almost in preparation for it rolling! Unlike other sports (football, soccer etc) whereby a normal running motion of the foot is taken by surprise when it is suddenly forced to go the wrong way and creates lots more damage in the process.

    RICE is a general guideline for most people, it works for some people and not for others.

    I’m sure you’re right… Neuromuscular damage sounds like something official that a Dr would diagnose, and I’m no Dr so I’ll agree with whatever they said :)

    Basically use common sense: If you regularly sprain your ankle (3times a year?) every year, for many years, the ankle will suffer long term damage. It will also mean that you’re a shit skater with a severe ability problem and you should either identify the problem (lazy legs) or find another hobby. I actually developed my switch flips and ramp riding to kill time whilst my ankle healed up.

    Hope this helps mate – mark

  28. B boi

    WELL im not gonna quit somthing i love. and i definately dont sprain it 3 times a year that would be insane. just thought u might know somthing more about it. but your no doctor so ill just keep to what i know from now on.. lataz :P

  29. Ushnik

    haha I tried what you said Mark. So I’m trying to 180 this gap and I suddenly fall off the tail of my board rolling my ankle really badly. It was nasty. I didnt put ice on it… Stupid mistake, but I stretched, rolled, walked on my ankle whenever I could. Within 4-5 days I was back on my board. Bam! The same day I hurt it badly again at the same spot. So I give it another 4-5 days… Happens again. So now Im on day 3 after rolling my ankle in a nasty nasty way. Whenever it seems to go down, I skate, I hurt it, I end up back where I started.. Any ideas/suggestions? Please dont say stay off the board for a month =( lol

    • Keith

      I know it ain’t sexy but I would wear an ankle brace. Maybe a basketball style one. Give you more support. Just my two cents.

  30. Ushnik

    I forgot to mention, it doesnt hurt at all except for the 3 times I hurt it. It hurt really bad for the first 15-20 mins and then its gone. But whenever I do anything more than 4 stairs my ankle gets a jolt of small pain. =(

  31. did you get it checked for bone damage? if not, you should have. Sadly mate, you have to rest it. Or at least not do anything that hurts it. I found I could do certain switch tricks and mini ramp riding whilst mine healed. but basically I had to stay away from anything that caused it pain. Sounds like you’ve gotta do the same :/

  32. Ushnik

    Well… Is there any possibility of it breaking if I can still skate (hurts a bit), and walk normally? I mean it getting better really slowly. How long u think I gotta wait for it?

  33. its unlikely that you’ve broken anything. Why? Because broken bones (even chipped ones) hurt like hell. Like a sharp, stabby pain with hot knives. You seriously will know if you’ve broken a bone. Its more likely that you’ve severely ripped tissue, muscle and maybe damaged tendons – but you’ll live. The basic rule is; if it hurts, don’t do it – if it doesn’t hurt, you’re ok. Eventually it will heal – but it’ll take time. How long tho, I’ve no-idea. Personally I just take pain killers and push through it. But then I did get my ankle checked out with a Dr first ;)

  34. Ushnik

    haha, thanks. Yea Im gna get it checked by a doc later today. But I also put an ice pack on it for 3 hours yesterday and then dipped it in pretty hot water for 30 mins, and it felt a lot better. But yea Im gna get it checked. thanks man

  35. gabriel

    look im 16 guy and i was just asking does it include ankle twisting to i landed on my ankle then i got twisted my ankle is swollened up i think but it is 6 times my ankle size any advice?

  36. go see a doctor. If there’s no bone damage, then you’ll be ok.

  37. Mimi

    You are pretty stupid if that’s what you do and I have been stupid just like you as well. Multiple left ankle sprains and always worked. Then I sprained the right one and after 4 months of pain I finally went to a doctor. Same symptoms, same feeling exactly. Turns out I had a fibula fractire as well as several fractures on the Tallus so if you can afford to go to a doctor if it hasn’t healed in 3-4 weeks, then do so or you are basically screwed. Surgery is inevitable after that ;)

    Doing what is described above is not much different than laying on your chest when you need a heart replacement. It’s bullshit. And if you have a broken bone, you will dislodge it as well by putting weight on it and instead of healing, the broken parts will end up being almost an inch away from each other instead of touching.

  38. Mimi

    Yeah and no “bone break” symptoms as described by the expert above ;) Just the same exact symptoms as a regular sprain with the pain not going away for months even though you can walk on the foot eventually.

  39. Mimi

    And you don’t put an ice pack for more than 15-20 minutes at a time or you end up fucking up your tissue. You put an ice pack for 15-20 minutes every hour for as many week as it takes if that is what you want but you don’t put it for longer than 20-25. Jeez bunch of medical experts here lol.

    • Keith

      I would say it would really have to depend on the “patient”. Some people have a low tolerance to ice, meaning 3-5 min would be ideal, couple times an hour. Or if your more active, 15-20 minutes may not reduce your inflamation. Good rule to follow is you want your foot cold, not hurting from the cold tho.

  40. Thanks for contributing Mimi. You hear that people? Go see a Dr first! :)

  41. Julio

    I rolled mine yesterday, twice. once skating, next later on that night getting off the couch i stepped on my phone and popopopopop it goes. fuck it. im on campus today pushing around. im stiff legged as fuck but what ever, in it to win it.

  42. yeah mate, that’s the mentality. sucks that you killed the foot twice tho. check out dogens titanium ankles tutorial: – it may not be about skating but its still just as relevant. Good luck.

  43. Remi

    Just rolled my ankle playing basketball. I’m elevating & icing it while smoking weed at the same time. Ive broke both ankles once and continually sprain/roll the damn things. I have a bowling tourney in about 25 hours & as of right now, there’s definately no chance of putting pressure on the heal…only tip-toeing (on the sprained foot). I’m gonna take your advise & keep getting up/walking around & we’ll see if I bowl worth a shit tomorrow.

  44. yeah, I’m not stating (or ever have stated) that my method works for everyone, but it ‘really’ works for me… and I think its worth giving a shot if you haven’t tried it.

    • emmanuel

      Hello a gymnast,I have a serious ankle injury,sustained this injury when I went for a competition ɪ̣̝̇и̣̣̣̥ 2011.2 years now and the sprained ankle wouldn’t let me train.

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  47. Tori

    i was so mad when i sprained my ankle in gym last week.. my parents made me go to the doctor and he made me walk on crutches for two days and it was hell. i knew i could walk on it and in computer class i got up (im abnormally tolerant to pain) and started walking and almost forgot them. I missed our championship soccer game last friday and the game we had tonight. we re in a tournament next week and im already fighting my parents about it.

  48. Tyler "gomesy" Gomes

    hell ya bro i rolled my ankle skating, but i got up and kept skating, im not gonna let an ankle pain stop me, and yess smoke lots of weed its good for you =]

  49. Ronin

    I’ve never read a bigger pile of crap in my whole life. I’m sure ignoring your doctors advice and just manning-up and getting on with it got you back in action ASAP but it certainly didn’t do your ankle any good, as you will find out when you’re crippled with arthritis at the age of 45. Swelling is your body’s way of protecting an injured part during the acute healing stage and should not be dismissed as a waste of time. ANY sports therapist will tell you to rest, ice & elevate for 48 hours to allow the swelling to do it’s job. you should NEVER contrast bathe (hot & cold) in the first couple of days while the swelling is there as this will only increase the problems. Active movements can be carried out after 2 or 3 days as pain allows but don’t ignore the pain – it’s trying to tell you something.

    The only thing you’re doing by giving out your witch doctor advice is opening yourself up to a lawsuit!

    • Vajayjay

      A lawsuit? Lmao. I highly doubt that’ll be coming his way as he clearly states that he is not a doctor of any sort, just a person with 20+ years of experience on a board. I’ve been skating for 5 years and I’ve rolled both my ankles at least more than twice each yet both have healed 99.9% and I don’t get any sharp pains in my ankles when I skate whatsoever. Unfortunately though, I recently just did myself in again and trust me, when I roll an ankle, I roll it like it was chillin with rock if u knomsayin. I always do the RICE procedure and make sure I limit my walking for a couple days at the least. After the pain is suck-up-able, I try and get my pimpin swagger back and push my wood like a skater should. Oh, one more thing… don’t forget your kush and backwoods… you’ll need it ;)

    • Gabe

      you sound like you know quite a lot about ankles, well save me! i’ve been to two different doctors and had two different X-Rays that showed absolutely no sign of a fracture or a break. The best part is, my ankle’s been swollen for the past 22 weeks, and i do not know what to do. Both doctors saw nothing wrong with it, neither did my therapist.. i attented physical therapy for 6 weeks then dropped out because i barely found it helpful.. i wanna go out and skate, i hate this so much, oh and btw, i do ice it a lot, almost everyday for most of the day.. and yes, i have sprained it earlier this year, although it only took 12 weeks to heal. and if it helps i’m 15, not 50.. Please help

  50. Tori

    im thinkin weed isnt that good for you…and considering im 13 that wouldnt work… i got to playin the game we had earlier today and scored the winning goal in the last 30 seconds :-D oh yeah and my ankle feels better now!!!!

  51. Bryan

    DUDE i sprained my ankle about four months ago and never let it heal right cause i kept skating so its still messed up. it hurts and its swollen and then i sprained my other ankle. i need help! How can i help them heal! i really wanna skate again..

  52. George

    this is sound advice, never let my first sprain heal, then sprained it again, never let that heal, now ive done it a third fucking time. so ill do this mate, sound as a pound

  53. Miguel

    dude i have had sprained ankle for 2 yrs has not healed bu i will try wat you said but now my heal is staring to hurt too wat should i do

  54. anon.

    wow. advice sounds weird. but i sprained my ankle almost 3 weeks ago now. i iced it and wrapped it for a week straight, started walking on it after that, hurts alot still, but not as bad, I can’t run, I need to, I ship to basic training for the army in a week and a half. What the hell do i Do?

  55. Aaron

    Thanks Im a skateboarder so this thing happens a lot

  56. stefan

    so im sitting here on my computer 2 days and 6 hours after i sprained my ankle and i just was looking at all these comments..
    i tried just now tried walking normally bcause i was to scared to earlier and i can walk normally ?
    thats weird like i heard cracks/ odd noisees when i “sprained my ankle ”
    if i can walk normally after this short a time. how long do you think till im skating normally with a brace on ?

  57. James Durr

    Hi Mark,

    I think there is some great advice here. Thanks to everyone for posting. I sprained my ankle about 10 days ago in the amazon. I did everything wrong. I didn’t ice until about 5 hours later, I went to see a healer who thought it was dislocated and was going to snap it back into place (thank god he didn’t do it as he said the pain would be too bad), I didn’t elevate etc….The next day I got a half leg casg put on by doctors who diagnosed it as torn ligaments. My ankle had swollen to a tennis ball size. They could not give me advice as they couldn’t speak english. I decided it was best to get some crutches which I bought in the market.

    Anyway, I sat around for a week and the ankle was getting no better. I still could not walk but the cast was pissing me off and I knew I was going to Rio in a week (not the place you want to be in crutches :) So I cut the cast off and started limping on crutches with just a bandage. Then I came accross this blog. I decided to start walking on it. Initially I used just the crutches to give me confidence by placing a little weight on the ankle. I also did the excercises as much as I could. I started walking without crutches yesterday.

    Its still painful and im walking slowly but good enough to be able to go out for a few beers tonight. I think psychology is important. I changed my thought process from ‘my ankle cant support my weight’ to my ‘ligaments are just tight’ and this has given me more confidence. My ankle is still swollen, its bruised to shit, but i will be walking properly in a few days I hope. Its a very frustrating injury but I did everything wrong and once I changed tack it started to improve rapidly. I was amazed.

    Hope this will help someone as the rest of the posts on here have helped me.


  58. Jase

    Ive had some nasty ankle rolls as well and I think it is good advice to keep stretching it out and try to walk on it. This makes it heal fast. Use a walker boot. Even a nasty roll that is unbearable can be walked on with a stiff walker boot. Now I’m in the business of prevention. Excercise the ankle a lot with some sports and always stretch out first. Soon the ankle muscle tendoins will get stronger and resist rolling. Also, wear a tight ankle brace or bandage. Keeping the ankle tight protects and reduces the chance of rolling. Also, post an injury this can help speed up the healing. -I’ve rolled my ankle(s) on a trampoline, playing volleyball, and couple days ago playing raquetball.

  59. dmt

    I just recently rolled my ankle…prob a first or second degree sprain. Swelling, bruising, all that crap. And I rolled my other ankle years ago, much worse.

    While I agree with you on some level, I think it’s more than a little obtuse to suggest that people who stay off their injury are “wimps”, “pussies” or whatever else. Once you’ve damaged ligaments, especially in the ankle, you are susceptible to further injury. Not allowing those ligaments to heal correctly further increases the probability you’ll have problems in the future…some possibly requiring surgery. Your “20+ years of rolling ankles” leads me to believe that you might have been better off allowing those earlier sprains to heal correctly rather than you being a pro at rehabilitating them.


  60. sean

    LOL.dude awesome article i twisted my ankle skateboarding too!im guy who keeps on twisting my ankle its fucking pissing me off so ima try what u say and hopefully it will get better in a few days giving me more time to start excersizing my ankle to make all the tendons and stuff strong again so ya thanks alot ill update u on the progress ill be making…

  61. sean

    oh and by the way i was wondering i twisted my ankle about 3 or 4 days i supose to follow ur advice right after i twist it, like is it to late to do all tht?

  62. danny

    yea during my football game yesterday i was going for a tackle and then a couple of people fell on me and i think my cleat was stuck to the ground then it just popped, when they fell on me my ankle was turning so thats how it created the popping. any suggestions? or should i just keep walking it off?

  63. Gee

    There are different levels of ankle sprains 1-3. Three being the most severe. I think each person will handle pain differently. I don’t think what works for one will work for all. I sprained both ankles at one time, by missing one deep step. Right ankle is a level 2 while the left ankle is a level 3 with bruising going up me leg and down my toes from torn ligaments. I definitely could not put pressure on the left ankle for at least 3 days. I was up the next day on the right ankle. So, you just have to listen to your body. A lot of icing, and Ace bandages helped me the most. Good luck to all.

  64. DAVID


  65. Matthew

    Thanks haha I like your kind of advice
    I rolled my ankle pretty bad today when I was trying to jump for a rebound in basketball and I kept going even though It was alot of pain but after about 5 minutes of play I went for a step and It just gave out and my face smacked the court so I decided to take me self out for the rest of that game haha but yea great advice :D

  66. I rolled my ankle two weeks ago trying a fakie heel-flip for the first time. When I got home and took my shoe off, it looked like I had a golf ball under my skin where my ankle bone used to be. For the first 4 days I couldn’t put any weight on it at all and was hopping around the house. Now its two weeks later, and I’m walking normally but anytime I stretch, or go down stairs I get pain.
    Today for the first time in 2 weeks I got back on my board. The pain wasn’t too bad – until I tried a pop-shuvit and came down on my bad foot. I felt that original searing pain again like the first time I hurt my ankle, and I hopped back into the house to sit down. Here I am 15 minutes later, and again I have no pain… Is it ok to do this? I’m probably not the youngest guy here at 28, but I hate to think that I have to give up skating now because of this.. I know healing takes a bit longer for us older guys, but shouldn’t this be enough time? Should I just keep skating?

  67. Rebecca

    Yeah my husband did just what you did during his young life of playing basketball. Now he’s not so young. Arthritis set into the joint, cartilage and ligaments destroyed. Basically walking around bone on bone. Could no longer run or do any normal activities. Amputation next route. Done and done. You might want to at least get your MD before you slop out your stupid advice. Idiot.

    • hehehe, this response made me chuckle. Your husband rocks if he has spent his life doing all the activities he loves – even if he screwed his body in the process. I bet he has no regrets in life. I love the way you blame me for you husbands injuries in his ‘young adult life’. Oh, and if you read the blog post, I say see a doctor first. Get the fuck off my website, retard. Hugs – Mark

  68. Jagan

    rebecca, maybe you can take your thrash talk somewhere else. Mark isnt asking you to do magic with your ankles or jump on them whatsoever, its just stretching and heating and applying pressure on it, its logical and arthritis is caused by so many other factors as well -_- stop speculating and move along

  69. Maddie

    I sprained my ankle 2 nights ago. I was at a cheer workshop, and one girl wasn’t holding me properly and practically dropped me. Sucks, but it happened. I rolled it, got up, and kept going for the next hour of the workshop. Jumping and flipping and all that. I could feel the swelling happening. I knew it was gonna be a level 1 sprain. Any worse and I wouldn’t have been standing after it.

    It’s now almost 2 days later since I sprained it. I’ve been using the R.I.C.E method, but have now stopped strapping it. I found it was making above the place I strapped on my calf muscle to swell. BAD! So, I’m icing it, and using ibuprofen rub for the inflammation. I can walk properly already, and even balance and stand on one foot.

    I have cheer tryouts on Sunday, and am gonna strap it like crazy so I can be there and do my best. The only thing I might ask not to do is round offs and cartwheels. That might be a tad too risky straight away.

    Anyways. I full support you whole, get out there and get moving. Hopping around and not using the ankle or muscles will only make it worse in my opinion. I also asked my doctor if I’d be ok for Sunday. He said as long as I strap it, I’ll be fine. He felt that there was no severe damage. The only evidence that I did it, other than me not being able to run again yet, is the bruising and a tiny bit of swelling there.

    Other than that, I’m all good. I’m gonna continue to move around and stretch as usual until I regain full use again.

    This ankle will not stop me from trying out on Sunday. Not a chance!

  70. I just sprained my ankle like 2 hours ago doing parkour. I did a jump off of some 12 foot ledge and landed wrong. it hurt like hell and I was rolling around clutching it Lol… anyways I need to get back to the training gym so I hope this article helps! BTW, Maddie, notice the dates on these posts…so…like the get out there and get moving crap is like not really use full, coming especially since youre like a cheerleader so like you like to cheer or whatever. coming from a guy that hates cheerleaders, like the bods tho..Lol

  71. Cooper

    Dang this is great advice! Haha I got my sprain by trippin in the park (sad but true) and I’m a pretty active person plus it happened to me on the day before I was going to head out to visit family in another state and I didn’t want to be stuck inside their house with a messed up ankle while I’m on vacation so I found this article and so far your advice is working out great for me and I hope I’ll be good and won’t have to worry about it while I’m out there. 3 thumbs up

  72. Awesome advice, it really works!

  73. Tom

    I pretty badly sprained my ankle on Tuesday evening. On Wednesday I walked 1 and a half miles on it to the train station. Then half a mile from the station at the other end to my workplace. I’ve done the same again this morning and I’ll be walking home in three hours.
    Altogether I’ll have walked about 5 miles on my ankle in the 48 hours since the injury.
    Really enjoyed this article, it’s given me faith that what I believe about recover is right.
    Here’s what my ankle looked like an hour and a half after I did it:
    And here’s what it looked like around 24 hours after that:

  74. matt

    PLEASE READ AND HELP ME: its been 14 months since my ankle rolled, i still cant skate, i had 1 x ray but was supposed to get 3 but i was broke, i can run jump around and everything for the past like 10 months or so, but i just cant skate… im planning on getting it thotoughly checked out when i have the money… can anyone tell me anything? or please say this has happened to one of you and still ended up skating again in your life.

    • After 14months whatever was damaged, has now healed. You’ll be dealing with tissue which requires physiotherapy.. either start working it yourself or get professional help. That’s the only way it will get back into action. Mark (I am not a Dr, what do I know?)

  75. Jen

    HEEEELP!!!!!!!!!!!!! i am 9 weeks into an injury and it is STILL swollen and painful. Need to get back to running i’m rapidly losing my mojo.

  76. Bob

    This is just what I wanted to see.

    I sprained mine about 6 weeks ago and have experienced little to no pain. I was skating on it regularly but ended up injuring it again and did the RICE thing – the swelling is almost gone but it is still swollen. No pain except for when I move it a certain way which I now know could have been gone by now if I was stretching it on the daily! Thanks bro, I’m gonna go to the park now :)

  77. Bob

    YES! Best session of my life. Didn’t quite re-sprain but did land on the ankle =/ Just some pain that is now gone and a bit more swelling. Icing for a few then in the tub with some hot water, stretching, etc. You are the man! :)

  78. fabian

    hey i twisted my ankle a week ago and its really swollen and the side of my foot is all bruised up but i can walk on it and move it up and down and side to side even tho it hurts a little but i cant jog or kick a ball hurts alot, but i wanna know how long til i can play a soccer game cause i have my 1st game in4 days and i dont wanna miss it what should i do?

  79. Pseudo-Doc

    Ok people here’s the thing. The reason your ankle swells up is that your body is actively trying to restrict your ability to move your ankle. Why you ask? Simple, it is preventing you from causing FURTHER HARM to your ankle. Not only that, but your body is trying to keep your ankle stable so that proper healing has a chance to occur. If you have anything above a grade I sprain, RICE, followed by intensive physical therapy is the ONLY solution to retain full range of motion and strength, and is the only way to prevent reinjury in the future. If you actually do have a ligament or tendon tear, even a partial tear, following the advice of this article is almost guaranteed to cause improper healing, development of scar tissue, and eventually reinjury. Physical therapy, especially exercises to restore proprioception to your ankle, is the single most important thing you can do for your sprain. However, it cannot be started until the swelling and bruising have dissipated. The people on here posting “oh well I sprain my ankle every so often and this works for me” well guess what people, if you followed a physical therapy regimen and properly treated your ankle, you wouldn’t get perpetual sprains. Perpetual sprains and reinjury in general are caused by long-term instability and weakness of the supporting muscles in that area. Remember, RICE shouldn’t be used indefinitely, just until the swelling has gone back to normal. Doesn’t take longer than a week in most cases. After that, if you don’t do physical therapy, you WILL reinjure that ankle and be worse-off in the long run. And physical therapy is not simply returning to action or stretching. It is usually a very specific set of exercises designed to strengthen the surrounding stabilizer muscles as well as the ligaments you injured. See a therapist and they will tailor a regimen around your specific injury. Hope this helps people, peace.

    • There you go kids, listen up^ to that guy. He/She knows what they are talking about, not me. I’m not a Dr, I’m a voice inside your head from a website on the internet. Go to a Dr first, follow the above advice, and if it isn’t working for you, then maybe try my idea. As I’ve said before, it is knowledge gained from 20+ years of skateboarding, spraining my own ankles and fixing them and speaking to people that had the same problems and sorted them out. I have not read one medical book on the subject. I’m 37yrs old and still back flipping and street skateboarding daily with no pain and full movement. Everything I’ve stated is practical applications to solve _my_ ankle injuries.


  80. Laura

    On August 1st running a 1/2 marathon I 3rd degree sprained my ankle on mile 10 and ran on it to mile 13.1 to finish. I searched the internet for advise such as yours as I was in training for the 10/10/10 Chicago Marathon and wanted some sort of hope that I would be able to still continue my journey to run it. Well I stayed off it in the beginning as they told me to but something inside me said that if I didnt push myself I would still be sitting on my couch. Funny I did a lot of the things you said here and today I am back up to 15 miles. With two weeks to the Marathon I am going to run and finish!

  81. z40

    lol ya good treatment to get permeanent ankle instability ive rolled my 5 times this year cause i kept rushing back on it to skate only to roll it again cause it was still weak and not fully healed…your ankles bro f em up if you want when your 50 you will be wishing you werent so badass when you were younger…

  82. Thaank you thank you thank you. I’ve been skating for 20 years. I skate pools and vert mostly these days, but I had to go New York for a job and i wanted to do some street skating. Well, the sidewalks and roads there SUK so I thought I’d get some softer wheels to help me roll over stuff. This guy in a long board store in Brooklyn (I have never even TOUCHED a long board and I should have known better) convinced me to try some 81a bertz wheels. Well those wheels were way to soft and gay (I’m gay in the sense that I’m a homosexual, but the gayness of these wheels is beyond any level of gay I could ever hope to achieve no matter how much dick I suk). I got stuck trying to roll over a crack, and SEVERLY sprained my ankle. Everyone said DONT walk on it, ice it, elevate it etc. I came across this article which makes WAY more sense so I followed the advice and one week later my ankle is almost completely healed! I’ve even done some light skating. I was traumatized by my injury cause I thought I would never b able to skate again (that’s how bad it was- I couldn’t even walk for the first 2 days) but by doing xactly wat u said I’m back in action after a week. Thank you thank you thank you!!!!!

  83. Wow, thanks for this reply. Glad to hear that you’re on the mend, feeling good and getting ready to roll again. Spread the love of this post to anyone else that gets a sprain… it may not be medically ‘sound’ advise, but it works for me, you and a whole lot of other people… so there must be something of value in it!

    mark :)

  84. Francesca

    Great. What if it’s fractured? My fracture is small, but it’s still an ankle fracture. I really like the advice for sprain- I’m an athlete, and all my instincts were saying the same.

  85. I’m a 61 year old female who sprained an ankle and chipped a bone 2 months ago. The bone has healed but the ankle, (which was in a boot for 6 weeks ) keeps swelling up whenever I take any exercise. The swelling looks bruised and it subsides when I rest, but as a physically active person I’m sick of inactivity


  86. Sarah

    ok… I am a dilegent athlete.. competitor.. 2 wks to a 3 mile race turkey trot.. 5 wks until a 1/2 marathon.. I sprained my ankle really badly.. day and half ago… doc appt today to make sure no breaks and I AM GOING WITH YOUR PLAN.. I LOVE IT. I NEED IT …….. DAMN THANK YOU!! Sarah in VA.

    • wow! thank you for that response! It’s people like you that make doing this blog worthwhile. Work that ankle loads, strap it at night, then work it again the next day! keep it going. Would love to know how you got on with that ‘trot’ in 2 wks – I think you’ll do it!

      mark :)

  87. Joe

    Walking on it hasn’t helped for me, So now I’m going to wait it out and not put pressure on it, Forcing and ignoring the pain is not the way to go, Natural healing and letting it take its time is.
    Trying to ignore and force something to heal faster just because you want it to isnt good.

  88. scap

    lets see how it works. sounds like im exactally like you but never actually tried this. Thanks bro

  89. veninka

    Does this advice go for knee and hip injury? I have these, and since I’ve been immobile for 4 months due to a broken ankle, I wonder if I can start stepping a little, despite the hip injury? (i had it yesterday, after excercises in bed) If I don’t start moving, I’m dead, but at the same time, I’m afraid not to make things worse

    • I have no knowledge of knee or hip injuries, sorry. Physiotherapy is designed to get people moving as soon as possible to aid recovery. I personally see no reason why you shouldn’t get moving, even if it hurts a little and you are able to do so. However I’m not a Dr.

  90. veninka

    hi it’s me again. i’ve had a bad pain around the right ankle recently; doc told me it doesn’t seem bad and i should/could step on it. I do it, but every time with lots of pain, it can barely stand my weight. I’ve had inflammation of ligaments on this ankle previously but it was better, now it’s acute again. Doctors tell me it’s ok, but i wondered if you ever had this – tendovaginitis- because the recommendations i read in the internet are always rest. The first time i had it i had to rest it for three weeks for it to pass. Now i can’t afford to rest it and im afraid it might get worse. Really stupid thing

    • The Doctor says it’s fine… That’s good enough for me. Why not you?…. either get on with your rehabilitation and ignore the pain (pain killers?) or find a new Doctor – getting a second opinion shouldn’t be a problem.

  91. Small ham

    I love this idea of don’t be a pannsy

  92. Raquel

    Just now, sprained my ankle that was already injured, playing with the dog, thanks for thee advice!

  93. Pingback: 2010 in review | FlipCatch

  94. R. London

    I rolled my ankle for the first time this past week while skiing out in Montana, funny this is, I did it coming down the stairs in our condo! You’re take on it is absolutely right though. I told my husband that it actually feels better standing on it. Just work through it and all will be fine :)

  95. Nathan Ward

    You arse.
    I thought I had badly sprained my ankle yesterday.
    Followed your advice, cold then hot bath. Tried to keep moving.

    Went to the hospital tonight, two fractures.
    A hot bath exacerbates swelling which causes damage.
    Walking around on a broken foot causes damage!

    Take this post down you pratt.

    • I seriously hope you’re joking when you call me an arse and state I should take the post down. As I specifically state in the article that I’m not a Dr and you should seek professional advice before following my words.

      ‘Arse’, straight back at ya, buddy!

  96. sophie

    im no expert or anything but i followed the RICE procedure for 3-4 after my ankle sprain and am now starting to re-introduce movement and try to start the rehab. i get what your saying but judging by what ive read its probably best to rest it a little first rather than rush back. but it is important not to leave your ankle completly immobile as this will not help. i think is probably best to get your ankle checked out asap to rule out breaks/fractures cos your rehab is gonna have to be different for that. if you know its a sprain i would think it would be best to rest for a few days then start to GRADUALLY introduce activites. ie. walk properly before you run, run properly before you jump etc. but im no doctor or anythiing and i think they should be listened to first.

  97. squid-aneesa

    thanks. i did it. i put ice on my ankle, i did the siliest thing. i played football! i had paracitamol and stuff, it healed a bit. i put joint pain gel on, and wore a sock to bed, it didnt help.

  98. Dude amazing advice!!! I sprained it bad longboarding (probably as close as I could get to a break without breaking it) and Exactly 2 weeks to the day my ankle feels great! I can tip toe on the foot with very minimal pain.

    This is epic. thank you so much, will be back skating next week!

    p.s. im one of those people who never comment on the internet so you know this guys advice is good.

  99. yola ashfield

    this is the BEST STRAIGHT FORWARD NO BULLSHIT advice i have come across apart from the nurse at the emergency he said walk as much as you can even if it hurts and it will heal quicker…i am 45 and started playing soccer this season and had never rolled an ankle before…have had other more serious injuries but boy this was a painful one…i can still hear the sound my ankle made ouch never rolling an ankle again : ) happy day : )

  100. Hey, I rolled my ankle 4 weeks ago and didnt stop doing my ususal stuff. The swelling has gone 75% but I’m now getting pains up the back of my achillies and calf muscle. It’s starting to sh*t me and I’m now limping. It was a bad roll but I dont think I broke anything, although i did hear it crack when I did it.. Do you reckon I should still wade it out ,or go and see my Dr.for an x-ray and all that other stuff designed to drain my wallet?

    • I dunno mate. I’m not a Dr. All my knowledge is based on going to a Dr first. If you didn’t stop ‘doing your usual stuff’ then I’d say that you didn’t break anything… because if you did, you wouldn’t be able to do anything! You probably snapped your tendon… those things take ages to fix. Google it. Rest up. You ain’t going anywhere fast I reckon. Good luck.

  101. Jace

    how long do you normally wait (on average – i know all injuries are different) to do any type of flip trick after a sprain?

  102. bryan

    dude so i sprained my ankle like almost 3 weeks ago an its still swollen but not like crazy swollen an i can walk run an im swimming to stretch it out but my main concern is if i can skate cause im so bored an its summer an i just wanna skate can you give me advice?

    • yep, ankles are a bitch aren’t they? Sounds like you’re doing all the right things. Get on your board and do what you can do, until the swelling goes down.

      • bryan

        hell yeah man but i tried skating today an i was just doing a shuv to see if i can do it an i landed on my heel an it hurt like a bitch but ill just take your advice an skate!thanks man!

  103. bryan

    oh dude one last question sorry if i bug but i just got back from skating an i was just doing lil tricks an after wards my ankle hurts an stuff so what should i do?keep skating or stop an relax an keep icing it

  104. pati

    Yeah. That russian dude’s full o’ shite, but i may be mistaken my cyrilic is kinda rusty. I am so happy this article is up here. For anyone who is super active, and normally athletic, doing nothing simply because you have an ankle boo-boo is pretty dumb. Our bodies natural ability to heal is stronger when our energy is moving and our chi/prana is not stagnant. Obviously not a bright idea to skate, mountain climb or surf :( right away, but easing back into things with a positive attitude, and ignoring everyone who wants you on the couch miserable is the best way to go.

  105. pati

    OH yeah…sports injury tape (K-tape or kinesio tape or something like it). herbal salves with cayenne and st johns wort whoop sprained ankles back into shape too.

    • Russian dude was a spammer….. deleted now :)

      Thanks for your thoughts btw – I’m glad you agree with the article. The only people I have found whereby it doesn’t work is those that haven’t had their injury checked out by a Doctor first, or those that are unwilling to give it a try. Meh.. it’s their life. Personally when I’m desperate, I need options. This is merely one to try. Thanks for stopping by. Mark :)

  106. Oh Good, because his thread was full of russian swears (i think)…Thank you for mentioning going to the doctor first, definitely good idea. Its like having serious car trouble and not going to the mechanic…except you can’t buy another fully functioning factory spec model ankle, at least not yet, that i know of. We only get one, um i mean two (each), we take good care of them.

    much obliged,

  107. I have a middle view point on this.

    I would NOT recommend pushing yourself through continuous pain. You are in pain for a reason, your body has an issue it’s actively working to resolve, and the pain is a sign that you are currently doing something you should not be doing, period.

    At the same time, I would equally recommend rest until it’s fixed, as in, I would not just sit on my ass for 2 months until I can move it perfectly fine. That’s just bad for too many reasons to list here.

    You WANT to make yourself hurt, but just a little. I rolled my ankle about 6 hours ago, and I got myself doing circles with it. About 4 hours ago I was trying to move my foot and every movement was agony, so I moved it just a little back and forth until I could do up and down, until I could do circles. Now at hour 6 I am doing circles pretty well. I am making it hurt every time I move it, but JUST hurt. The second the pain is really there I go back the other direction. Do NOT push yourself into heavy pain zones, just keep going with a little pain and you will heal the best, if maybe a little slower that what Mark recommends. You swap a little recovery time for improved recovery, which help prevent further injury (this applies to just about everything) and improved strength/flexibility once the pain subsides fully.

    One question I have though, how the hell are people still swollen after half a year? Holy fucking shit people! That is NOT good! The swelling should be almost gone after like a week, IMO, tho I have zero real experience with this. I would be straight scarred if it lasted 22 months!

  108. Ben

    about how long does it take the swelling to go down? Good advice btw

  109. TopCat

    Two weeks ago, I did something to my ankle, im guessing sprain as it swelled up, hurt like a bitch and i couldnt physically hold my body weight on it hard as I tried. Either way I kept working -horses wait for no one- and then iced and elevated it that night. After that I kept working as normal, making sure to ignore the pain as you say -my body has learnt pain is nothing haha- anyways, I made sure not to run for a week just to be safe, then when I tried to run the otherday for the first time, I managed perfectly fine. A few days later my ankle gave out whilst I was running and still since then I can not hold my body weight on it. Is there anything you can suggest? I have done the whole making it take the strain factor, but I still can’t seem to get it to hold my weight? I am not a large person, I weigh 8stone at most, so I am rather confused?

  110. Saucer

    True mate, this site is his opinion at best for helping. Id seek a doctor cause he may have done major damage to the ankle since he didn’t give it sufficient amount of time to heal. There is no miracle cure to a sprained ankle. Takes time, if you don’t give it time and rush like everyone else here, pay the consequences.


  111. sophia

    I have a really spraind ankle and ur my freakin life saver and I dnt mean the candy

  112. Daniel

    Does stretching the ankle help swelling go down too?

  113. tommy10486

    Since I was 17 I have 3rd degree sprain my ankle from skating 6 times. My issue is this I was skating 12 days ago trying to re-learn my back tails and the board hit my ankle a few times ( not too severely either) I DID NOT SPRAIN/TWIST MY ANKLE IN ANY WAY WHAT SO EVER. I finished up my session and went home an took my shoe off an my ankle was as big as a softball. I’m 24 now. I’m having all the same exact symptoms as the 5 times I sprained it before with the lack of mobility, swelling, and pain. What gets me is my board barely hit my ankle. I know your not a doctor, I’m just asking for your opinion because u have had similar injuries and your years in skateboarding. Help a Boston kid out LOL.

    • OK, this is what I know:

      1: the body is amazing at repairing itself.
      2: sometimes the body can’t repair itself fully, so it does the best it can, which may limit movement.
      3: the body is amazing at telling us when to stop movement.

      Your ankle injury from when you were 17 has nothing to do with the ankle injury at 24. You’ve just damaged it in a similar way. Therefore, just go ahead and fix it up like before: strapping it up, freezing the bruise, heating it up to keep it moving & some stretching etc.

      If anything seriously bad has happened to your ankle, you will be experiencing excruciating pain, you physically won’t be able to stretch it because it will hurt too much and your brain will override your objective and make you stop.

      So, chillax, just work on it like normal and you’ll be back rolling again in no time.

      However, one little caveat here. Starting skating again at 24 is haaard! When you’re 17 everything is soft and supple and your body is used to the repetitive movements, building muscle and tissue up over time. At 24, things aren’t the same, you have to do all that training again. You might know how to roll in your head, but your body isn’t ready for it. You will hurt yourself more starting up again at 24 and injuries will take a lot longer to recover from. (eg: months instead of weeks).

      Stick with it tho… I’m 39 and still rolling every weekend :)

  114. tommy10486

    Thank u for your quick response bro. Since 17 I have stopped skating and came back to it several times. I just recently invested in a pair of Osiris high top shoes to cover up the ankle a bit for if I was wearing these 12 days ago I would have never knew this site existed lol. I agree 100% with your ankle remedy at a skateboarders view. The reoccurring ankle injuries are worth the risk to the reward of landing your daily goals of tricks in my opinion.

  115. I disagree. I play ball, and skateboarding is really bad too, but Basketball is one of the worst. Coming down from a full jump at top speed directly on a twisted ankle… ouch.

    Repeated sprains suck. If you don’t give it proper time to heal and you don’t do conditioning exercises, it will happen again really quickly. I know, I had 4 on one ankle in 6 mo and now it is basically shot.

  116. ian

    thank you for this… it helped me in my time of need….

  117. seba

    great great article!! Has anyone got their toes purple after the sprain? how can you know by yourself if you got a broken bone ? is it posible ? thnks

  118. seba

    I think my problem is more on the foot itself and toes, I hav had a lot of sprained ankles in the past but now is more like the middle of the foot and toes that are not responding completely. the ankle got pretty much all its movement back, any suggestions ??

  119. Clay Petkau #107

    this article is true. doctors alway say to put ice on it and rest well that takes forever. I cased 160 foot jump quad racing and sprained my ankle really bad so i wrapped it and rode a execise bike for 20 mins then got straight to trying to walk after rubbed a ice cube on it then did that for the next day and i was good to race the weekend after i did it. :D Thanks

  120. Wendy

    Well, I must say I have been enjoying reading all these emails…here is my question I rolled my left ankle about 2 weeks ago nothing broken but the pain is excrutiating…did I mention I can’t take any pain meds because I am 8.5 months pregnant!!! I have been trying to put weight on it but the pain and the swelling is so painful..but I can’t do crutches anymore…I have a toddler who needs my attension also..I guess what I am asking is should I just start putting weight on it because the dr. Said I could be on crutches for 10 weeks..hell no!!! Need some support..


  121. CF

    OMG – loved reading this. I just rolled my ankle last week pretty badly. I heard it pop and the pain almost made me vomit!! I have a heli-snowboarding trip planned for the first week of March and I am not missing it for a sprained ankle. So, I started walking on my ankle as soon as possible. However, I iced immediately to minimize swelling (which it did). I tried contrast (hot/cold) hydro therapy about 3 days later and can say that it helped tremendously. I am also a true believer of acupuncture to reduce swelling to free up the body to heal. I also used Traumeel (a topical anti-inflammatory containing arnica) three times a day. Its been 7 days and I am able to walk with a minimal limp, stand on my tip toes and balance on one foot fairly well. Lateral movement with the foot is still quite painful but I still do the excercise the PT gave me several times a day and try to walk as normal as possible. So, I am all for being proactive when it comes to injuries. Just glad to see there other people out there that think “resting” is bullshit!!


  122. melissa 33 year old female.i sprained my ankle about 7 weeks ago.been in a aircast for going on 4 weeks and my doctor wants me to wear it for another week and a half.i had an mri and i have a grade 2 sprain and a partial tear in one of my ligaments.the doctor said i dont need surgery and that it will heal on its on.i am so upset about this cause it has been 7 weeks and its still not completely better and i get some pain sometimes.not bad pain just a little here and there.i just feel like its never going to heal.i cry sometimes cause im so frustrated.i just want to be normal again.does anyone have any advice for me? thanks

  123. Uhh, your Dr has given you a pretty comprehensive report there… I think you should just chill, rest up and keep moving your foot if you feel you can. He’s right it’ll heal; you’re not 12 any more, these things take time. I’m 38 and I wish I healed as quickly as I did when I was younger.

    However…… 7 weeks ago? wow. Now I don’t know your history, height, weight, fitness condition or anything like that.. but there’s no way i’m wearing an aircast for weeks on end. i’ve done some super crazy bad damage to my ankles over the years and I always follow my above guide and get mobile asap.

  124. melissa

    thanks for the reply mark.i am 130 pounds 5″6 and im athelic buid.this is the first sprain i ever had in my life.i dont want to wear this aircast anymore either.but she said i should so the ligament can it possible my doctor could be misdiagnosing my healing process?and im going to call her tommorrow and ask about physical therapy,i think that would help.

  125. Landis

    How legit is the info on this page?!

  126. Dave

    Mark, I’ve sprained my ankle a week ago and I went to the doctor who didn’t take any X-Rays, but assumes that its not bad (because I can stand on my toes, bend my feet albeit slowly, walk but very slowly). So he says its not bad, but to come back in 2 weeks if it doesn’t get better.

    I’m 17 and it isn’t getting better. I elevated it/iced it for the first day, then I started walking and stuff (but the back of my feet hurt a bit, and my legs are SO STIFF). Its not “painful” but I’m scared ill break something and on top of that its super stiff. Should I still keep moving it? Its been a week! Do you think its something more severe? I can walk but really slooowww ..

    • Your Dr will have seen ankles like yours time and time again. Trust the man. You’re young, be patient; go back to the Dr if you’re not happy. However I believe that you’ll heal up fine. Bone damage of any kind is insanely painful, therefore relax, you will know it if the damage is really bad. Trust the Dr :)

  127. Chris

    Hi, was snowboarding three weeks ago and was gutted when the holiday came to an end, so was real happy when a friend offered a cheap 2nd week back in the mountains! On the 3rd day we were fucking round with a gps app and at 89.6 kph, hit a piece of solid ice, got thrown on to the wrong edge and stacked it down the mountain for what must’ve been at least 50metres. Ankle instantly hurt a little but finished the run, had lunch for an hour then hit the slopes again. Rode for a further three hours with no pain, then suddenly I really lost all movement In my ankle! It was really painful when we got back to the apartment so I rested it and iced it every 15 minutes for 20 minutes. Its gone really stiff and still painful but have read all your blogs and have been rotating my ankle during the last hour. Really wanna hit the mountain again before I leave, you reckon if I rest up tomorrow I can tear shit up again on my last day!
    Nice one, cheers

  128. chris meckens

    Thanx brooo.! this helped me out big time

  129. Gabriel

    I recently rolled my ankle on flatground, it’s now hurting more than any other rolled ankle I’ve had, when I rolled it there was a reasonable cracking sound but I could walk on it, I haven’t treated it yet and it has swollen on the outside. I’m 16 years old and shouldn’t really be skating due to the fractured skull I obtained in December, so anyone got any ideas?

  130. Shawn

    This dude is a jackass. #straightup

  131. Hannah

    ya i have got to agree, last year i sprained my ankle pretty bad but it was like the third time so i was like scre this im walkin. My friend goes and gets amild sprain and he is on crutches the next day haha i got a mild sprain today and i am playing in my soccer game tonight

  132. sammy

    hey guys yesterday i completely f##ked my ankle i rolled it with my entire body weight backside flipping off a 6 ft ledge over an 8ft wide drainage channel any tips

  133. Here’s what has worked for me – I tripped and missed the last step on a staircase, going down and sprained my ankle bad. A Grade 2. I did RICE for the first two days, walking on it, as best as possible. Went to doctor to check for any breaks (none). He put me in a fiberglass cast to travel (I was out of town when this happened) – stayed in cast 8 days. Very little swelling when cast was removed by my Ortho doctor. I am in a small side ankle brace and doing physical therapy 2 to 3 times a week. It will soon be 4 weeks and the bruising is gone and very little swelling. I think the cast helped stabilize the ligaments and the physical therapy helps strengthen it. One last thing, Arnica Gel! The best thing on the planet. I put it on the first week, amazing help.

  134. May

    Wow what an aggressive way of healing! But I can’t say its not true, I just don’t put as much pressure and work into it as you do. My problem is having flat feet, so ankle sprains have been frequent for me for the past few years now. Usually it would take about 2 weeks for my mild-moderate ankle sprains to heal, in order for me to walk without any pain. This time, it’s been close to a month, and this mild-moderate sprain is still burdening me! Of course all the swelling and bruising went away after icing and heating the first few days, but theres still pain felt when pushed against the area, same goes with walking. I do stretch and rotate, all together with massage and using hot patches still, but don’t know why it’s taking so much longer. Then, I found out that during the first three weeks, I have been icing it way too much!! Icing is good for swelling and bruising, so it should typically be used within the first couple of days to rid the color and size of the sprain, but I unknowingly continued icing for three weeks, and even worse, I had big blocks of ice directly placed onto the injured areas. I’m sure some of you know of the damage this may do, but I was ignorant, or may have forgotten the first time the Podiatrist told me. So for me, the RICE method does work, but also, like what MARK said, move it at the same time massage it for a faster healing process!

  135. ODette

    Thanks for the tough love, love. Very helpful!

  136. Alpha

    Hello, ur articale is amazing.. I wanted to ask if i should walk on my sprained ankel. See i was just helpinp my mom put our plants in the car and there was this frog came and jumped on me of course i jumped.. It didnt hurt to much, it doesnt hurt should

  137. Alpha

    *it doenst hurt anymore*. Should i walk on it and would it affect my running??? Btw im 12 yrs old

  138. Pingback: Approaches that can help Mend a Sprained Ankle

  139. lol great advice :) the inside of my ankle is swollen and bruised the last 2 weeks , i did’nt fall of twist it, i dont know what happened it to be honest but im sick sitting around, so tonight im going back to my excerise class and i’ll fight through the pain :)

  140. josh

    Love the advice I sprained my ancle 6 months ago and I was able to walk after a month by painkillers and ice I sprained it again did what you said and gait on my feet after a week back for soccer practice. Thanks a lot

  141. Coleman

    I love this! I sprained my ankle about two weeks ago, but haven’t gone to the doctors. I sucked it up! I’ve done just about everything you noted in this article. I just go my ankle brace yesterday and I love it. There is still pain and itching, but at least the brace is keeping my ankle stable. Shit… My son just had me doing the Wobble dance with him a little while ago. Thanks for the straight talk!!! I especially like when you said “Take pain killers, smoke weed, do whatever you’ve gotta do to block out the pain, but push your ankle movements to the limit.” That had me cracking up!

  142. michaiah

    I’m a very active person and I sprained my ankle unknowingly. And kept going with my day to day life and this was December of last you and it made my knee and hip and jacked up and im in a huge amount of pain. Unbearable. Surgery is becoming an option. So you may not suggest going on like normal.

  143. Gia

    You are amazing and hilarious! THANK YOU!

  144. Mjay

    Thanks bro, this is good tought advice we all need to stop the whining an get back to being a athlete !

  145. annaleigh

    if you really think standing on it is a good idea you are the stupidest person i have ever heard!!! you do rice R-rest I-ice C- compression E- elovation

  146. Wow!!!!!! Great attitude in very helpful information thank you so much to a breath of fresh air, mind over matter no pain no gain attitude. Although I must admit I am taking advantage of day 1 of my lovely sprained ankle, off work and relaxing around a little bit. Although I’m not a big Athlete or spotsy or outdoorsy type for that matter, well……..unless by outdoorsy u mean cocktailing on my patio, I am, however, an extreme fashionista. Soooooooo…….rolled, or sprained ankles and my new new 6 in zebra stilettos DON’T MIX!!!

    • If you wear 6 inch heels you deserve to have fucked ankles. However you write good blog comments, so I love you :)

      • HEEYYY…….not true. IF, INFACT, you eff up your ankle wearing 6″ heels, YOU HAVE NO BUSINESS wearing them. HOWEVER, If you ROCK them, like I do, you don’t have to worry. BTW, I was barefoot when I effed up my ankle, so fuck you very much (kidding of course I think your great, witty and funny as hell). You’ll be happy to know of my progress, I’m off the Uggs and back in my stilettos, have even added a few (10) new pairs to my collection to celebrate my successful recovery. I suppose I owe it all to you and your amazing blog :0)

        PS: I’ve got great calf muscles as a result of my regular 6″ heeling wearing I’ll have you know ;0)

  147. kamya

    That was a nice 1 thnx..

  148. Hi , i sprained my ankle for the third time 2 weeks ago. I ‘m not in pain and i am wondering if walking and exercising it will heal it faster than if i did nothing appreciate any feedback Catherine

  149. This really does work. Messed up my ankle a few weeks ago, still not night but been ignoring it since. Twisted it 3 more times since and found out if I keep moving it constantly, straight after, the pain goes away in a few minutes (it wasn’t properly sprained or anything but it proves the point)

  150. tony lanz

    Hi ..I am in the future.since this thread started in 2007
    I sprained my ankle badly while I was in a baseball practice sliding to second base. I felt like I had broken ankle swell like a I had a baseball coming out of my ankle, I could barely stand on but I started treating with ice and pain killers and try to rest it for three days. Swell spread it all over my feet and had bruise spreadin all over my feet after a week I started walkng on it and soaking it with warm epson salt and lite exercise on the bike I still had pain in the mornings. By the third wweek I could do the eleptical the bike machine and walk normal ..this my fourth week yesterday and I still got swell on my ankle but real small compare to before I still feel lil pain but just from the strectc of my tendons ..I hope the swelling dissappear completly I can’t wait to go back to 100 percent again..and I agree it takes like three phases. And lot of ice and pills.and start walking after the second week and exercise it..if you are someone active ..

  151. Taylor

    This is you beautiful.
    I sprained my ancle pretty bad a week ago. The swelling just wen down but still I couldn’t put any pressure on it at all. I had just bought a new motorbike the same day and was desperate to ride it. So I read this and did my own twist.
    I just got blind drunk so I couldn’t feel anything and walked on it cautiously but allot for hours. I passed out and in the morning it was soo sore and twice as worse. I rested up the next day and kept up on all my mess and made sure I was eating lots to give my body fuel to repair. And by the day I am walking on it almost pain free. Might not be everyone’s cup of tea but it seems to me like your demanding your body that you need it fixed and your body rises to the occasion. Worked a treat. Another few days and ill be Riding my bike.
    And by the way before I got drunk my ancle was in constant pain and even the slighting movement even in my toes was ago agonising.

    • Yeah, well obviously getting ‘blind-drunk’ and walking around on it is about as stupid as you can get with any injury treatment. But I’m glad you felt inspired to try and do something to get your ankle working! Enjoy the bike, stay off the booze, yeah? :)

  152. Nance

    So why does the Dr tell me to REST, Ice it, and keep elevated above heart and NOT TO WALK ON IT?? He’s got me in a orthpedic boot along with it wrapped in ace bandage. And out from my work. It’s been 8 days now and yet it’s black and blue on the inner side of the avulsion fracture <fracture is outer side of ankle) and the bruise travels under my foot. three toes (pinky one and 2 next to it) cannot lift them, or pains up the top of foot these too are black and blue. Now my foot is driving me nuts with itching.

  153. Jeffrey

    I’m sorry but I strongly disagree with more than half the stuff you say above. I think the severity of the sprain determines if you can use the techniques you mentioned. If you have a mild sprain then I can see how you got the idea. However, I would not recommend any of this if you cannnot even move your foot or toes and are on crutches (that’s what I’m going through right now)

  154. Brady Morris

    I suffered a 3rd degree sprain about 2 weeks, my ankle doesn’t really hurt anymore the middle of my foot is causing the pain. I haven’t read a comment that involves this.. I’m just curious on your thoughts. HELP!!

  155. James T Kirk

    Yes I do agree with Mark that his technique works on certain degree of sprained ankle. So check with your respective doctors. If bones are broken then his advise don’t work.

    • People also forget, or don’t realise, that broken bones hurt tens times more than a sprain! Most people don’t break a bone, or enough bones, to know and recall this.

  156. Dina

    My now 15 year old daughter broke her ankle 3 years ago at soccer training the snap was so loud people heard it from the opposite end of the pitch… required surgery and 1 very cool titanium pin…..she recovered well but on an active day her ankle will still swell up a little…..just to make life a little more interesting 3 weeks ago I get the call …I think I’ve broken my ankle again….well a hospital trip and X-ray later they decide its broken but not as bad……it’s immobilized and we book in for a proper cast in 2 weeks……well we go back two days later cos the back slab was a mess only to be told the GOOD news that its not a break but a severe sprain……thanks for letting me know (much sarcasm implied)…….so we put a pressure sock on she starts walking on it immediately all be it slowly and we book in to the physio hydro and mumo massaging with comfrey and arnica cream 3 times a day… was severely swollen and talk about 50 shades of bruised……she played half her soccer game at week 2 although she is being way cautios and a bit protective……simple U strapping with tape stops it from turning……she is young and healthy…..surely people can assess their individual situation and treat to suit……enjoyed your blog very entertaining….

  157. megan

    Hi, I am asking for your advice on a rolled ankle. This happened yesterday and I am feeling the pain! I haven’t been able to sleep much because of the pain. I’ve been icing it but I don’t know target points where to ice. I will tell you the pain filled areas though…the inner part and the part above my heel in the back of the ankle. I don’t skate but I play basketball and volleyball so I jump and land with a lot of weight. I will let it rest but try to walk on it until Monday. If it feels worse by then I will attend a doctor. I am 16

    • You’ve kind of answered the question already. You’ve rolled the ankle (it isn’t broken, because if it was, you’d be screaming), you’ve probably torn lots of tissue and maybe damaged the tendon on the back of the heel, and yes you should see a Dr, if you can :)

  158. Sophie Hawkins

    Mark :) c’est moi soph ..theres an amazing new DC park at work here in francais. loving skating more than ever. screwed my ankle bombing a hill late at night and cant wait to get back on it!!!!!!!!!!!
    im ditching the crutches and going to a rasta festival tonight. Its glaso weekend after all.
    Thanks for this :) much love. x

  159. Robyn

    Well non of these have helped us. My daughter got a high degree ankle sprain 6 weeks ago skateboarding. The foot almost could make a completeb360 . It was a complete tear in 2 spots
    She is a varsitsy level vball player outside hitter who needs to land on her left injured foot.mtry outs are aug 19,, she’s just getting off her brace. It still hurts and she can’t make circles yet. It hurts when she touches it.. Help she needs to start training
    Can she begin training soon?

    • Well this random guy from Australia would say it depend’s on how tough your daughter is, and how much strapping tape you’re willing to use :) but it’s now mid august and she’s probable fine by now

  160. Dude I can’t wait to try this, stupidly did some stuff yesterday, but only an hour away from talking to my Doc about my X-ray now… I really hope he gives me good news.

    sprained 8days ago, went from two times ankle size (all round) to a bit bigger today. now there’s just bruising all over and some pain while walking in the inside. just really want to be able to snowboard next week otherwise back to work :(

  161. Alyssa Romero

    Hi, I’ve never been to sympathetic myself and I was wondering about my ankle… I know it makes me sound blonde but I was walking to get a volley ball and stepped on the side of my foot it looks a little red and purple on the little ball thingy on my ankle ,sorry I don’t know what it’s called, I’ve also noticed that the little ball thingy that I’m talking about Is more “popped out” I guess I could say PLEASE ANSWER ME I really wanna be back in my sport within a week or so , thanks

  162. Jorge

    I have 33 years old kinda an old fart the thing is my bro buyed 2 long boards and I was having a great until ….yes I sprained my ankle, at first was just a litle pain on the foot but after 1 hour I just couldnt walk and even on the bed or sitting hurted, is this normal? I think I gonna need crutches plz answer!!

    • Yeah sprains always feel OK initially, then an hour later, bam! You’ve got a tennis ball in your sock and you’re crippled. Sounds like a standard ankle sprain to me. Crutches won’t help. Read all the post above, then all the comments, and get that joint working again immediately. I’m 40 btw and still skate all the time.

  163. I’m a very inactive person, 33yrold female and a little heavy. I’ve never had a broken bone or a sprain before. This weekend, Saturday afternoon, I tripped and twisted my right wrist while catching myself badly. Hurt like crazy but no swelling or bruising. I kept using it anyway (computer mouse) and just made sure not to move the fingers enough for it to hurt. Then Monday I was jumping in the mud to knock dead limbs out of a tree (moronic move) and twisted my right ankle. It looked like my foot bent completely in half outwardly but I didn’t hear any cracks or anything. I sat for a few minutes in shock (I’m known to faint if I stand up too soon after a sudden pain, total wimp) and then got up and finished cleaning up the backyard. My ankle hurt bad, sharp tingly pain, but my hand completely stopped hurting the moment it happened and has barely suffered a twinge since despite all of the heavy lifting I was doing. I don’t know if that’s because I kept using it for so long (my desk is high so it was elevated), or just mind over matter – my mind focusing on the new harsher pain over that old twinge. By the time I finished the yard my foot was sore but I could walk on it, and my shoe kept it from swelling at all. There was no bruise or anything when I finally sat down and checked the damage. I have very pale skin and usually bruise easily. A few hours later it started to swell so I slapped a cooling pad on it and kept it elevated, even sleeping with it up. This morning it was swollen right in front of the tip of the fibula but no bruising. It hurt to walk on but I minced my way around that slowly. I couldn’t fit it into any shoes so I wore heavy flat sandals to work (desk job) and now the swelling is all the way around my foot and ankle, evenly thick and puffy but only a little painful if I rotate it – then it’s like a sore muscle being stretched, achy and warm. Still no bruising. The lack of bruising is what made me assume it’s a very minor sprain. Does it usually take days for the bruising to appear or does that show up right away? After reading this article and all the responses I find that it doesn’t really hurt anymore (perspective). I’m babying it because I don’t want to push it and create a real injury. I can afford to baby it as long as necessary since all my hobbies are sedentary and I have a desk job. I’m going to continue using the cooling pad and elevating it in the evenings in hopes of reducing the swelling, but I’m curious if the swelling is really a bad thing. My ankle hurts when I elevate it, I just can’t find a position where it’s comfortable and sleeping like that is difficult since my toes get cold. I figure tossing warm blankets over a foot that needs to be iced regularly is counterproductive. Also, the swelling was worse when I woke up than it was when I went to bed despite it being elevated all night. Won’t the swelling go down on its own once the damaged bits are done healing? Will something bad happen if a foot is left swollen for too long? I need a reason to fear the swelling so I’ll fight it harder. Right now it just strikes me as a minor nuisance since I can’t stuff that puffy foot into my shoes. I’ll have to either buy a pair of bigger shoes or something to squeeze the swelling enough that my normal shoes will fit. The heavy sandals I wore today squeezed the edge of the puffy parts upward toward my ankle and that burned so much I don’t think I’ll like squeezing the entire swollen mass upward. Since squeezing hurts and leaving it alone doesn’t hurt, my gut instinct is to leave it alone. Is there a reason I shouldn’t?

    • Hey Arigatomina. Lovely name by the way:) thanks mina

      I sprained my ankle four weeks ago hey and it was still swollen heaps, I could only put on all my shoes about two weeks ago but I had to loosen all the laces. Actually my foot was still about one and ahalftimes normal size until two days ago. I had been going to my physio, doctor and a myopractic guy(Chinese medicine/chiro combo). And the last guy managed to reduce my swelling to almost normal size now. I have pain and stiffness still but I’m going to tell you how I reduced the swelling.

  164. So yeah I reckon you could try these (available in Australia from the local supermarket, so wherever is appropriate for you)

    I had a small handful in a chux wipe pouch next to the swollen joint.I used two wipes to hold the crystals cause I had so much swelling and wrapped it in plastic wrap. Just sleep overnight with this one night and it’ll either do nothing or reduce the swelling depending on if you have really soft and liquid swelling. If it’s hard swelling then it probably won’t do anything.

    Upon waking I had some really wet chux wipes and the crystals had mostly gone white. So you might want to sleep with a towel under your feet to stop the bed getting wet. But yeah I hope this works for you. Good luck finding the rocks though it took me three tries beforeiI found them

    • Thank you! I’ll get some of those crystals. Right now the swelling is uniform over my entire foot, ending just short of the toes. The worst pain is above the pinky toe, so I might have hurt that bone (cuboid) more than I did the tendons in my ankle. The original swelling started in a ball right over that bone, so that’s where I’ll apply the crystals. If spot-treatment doesn’t work then I can always try the bath recommendation on that you site you linked. I was considering short icy soaks at this point since my cooling pad doesn’t seem to be helping, so I’m glad to have an alternative. I have poor circulation to my toes to begin with, so freezing them is not a fun prospect. If there’s a warm way to reduce swelling, I’m all for it.

    • I tried warm soaks, so I’m not sure if it was the crystals or the warm water. Either way, it helped a lot. I recommended it to my sister since she hurt her knee a few days ago and has some nasty swelling that ice isn’t helping. Unlike me she has a doctor, so she’ll have to run it by him first. The swelling on my foot has gone down enough for my shoes to fit and for some bruises to show up. I guess the swelling kept them hidden. I have a long and thick bluish-gray bruise on the outside and pale blue green up around the tip of the fibula, and another a smaller but identical one starting on the inside. I suspect those bruises will darken once the last of the swelling around my ankles go down. They’re still puffy up around the joints. I also have a curious thick purplish red line just above my second and third toes. You’d think they were bent backwards, but I can’t see how that could have happened with my shoes on, and they never hurt or went numb or anything. The top of my foot is still puffy and looks like it might have a very pale bluish green tint to it so I’m not sure if I hurt those two toes in particular or if the entire foot is going to be colorful eventually. I’m glad the bruising didn’t show up right away or I would have panicked.

      Happily the bruising is just window dressing. My foot aches in different places now and then, but it doesn’t hurt anywhere. This post was right about walking normally. Once I rotated the kinks out and actually tried it, I realized I could. I still have trouble going downstairs and my ankle burns if I drive too long, but I can walk without a limp so I’m very lucky and happy. I wish I had before and after pics, too, especially now that it’s so colorful. If my entire foot does color up on me, I might have to borrow a camera just to document the experience.

      • Yeah I had bruising over my toes too and didn’t bend them back. And a lot of other areas a few days after the sprain.

        I think all the colors you mentioned are from bruising. Even that line of purple. My doctor and physio and friends who’s rolled their ankles all say it’ll take ages before I can run again a few more weeks but that’s my problem for getting bone bruising oh well good luck with your injury

  165. Rubix

    I sprained my ankle 8 years ago on the volleyball court in high school. I’m 23 now, and the swelling only gets worse with increased activity. I can’t run or hike without my ankle doubling in size (from its already “normal” swollenness), and the pressure pressing down into my entire foot. I’ve had x-rays, ultrasounds and MRIs and the only thing that the doctors found was a slight tear in my peroneus brevis tendon. They put me in a boot for a month, and that didn’t help. Then they put me in a hard plaster cast for a month, and that didn’t help either. I have done all the methods mentioned above, iced and elevated, rested, used crutches and nothing has helped. The swelling is entirely throughout my ankle (outside, inside, top of foot, around Achilles tendon) and it doesn’t hurt during regular daily activities. Pain, pressure and excessive swelling only occur after I leave the gym after cardio and/or leg day. The doctor said he could perform surgery on the torn tendon, but it doesn’t explain the swelling on the inside of my ankle and around the rest of my foot. My orthopedist is stuck, and I’m unsure what to do. Any suggestions?

  166. Alyssa

    Last time I had a sprained ankle I did this because I hate doctors, (I had not even read this yet) and that foot is perfectly fine. My other foot is now sprained and I have walked on it so far. I am just a little slower than before. I have finally found someone who does not say to do the RICE method. Thank you for not being a wuss like other people are. {:)


    AND Adviced me to strengthen it be standing on one foot and to rotate it clock and anti clock ( when the pain is completely gone) however i skipped this process and went back to the playground and played against a strong team after the match ended i felt a tick of pain i ignored it so pain increases and my ignorance decreases next day i slept woke up found it as red as a blush on a face and it was circular but i went to school NOTE: Egyptian preparatory or middle schools are NOT PEACEFUL thou i’m tall and stronger than much of them but you can tell who wins 6 normal men V.S 1 INACTIVE athlete HOWEVER it got messed up and i trained for quarter an hour feeling severe pain when coach arrived he told me to rest it so its 2 weeks now no activity no foot to defend myself and it’s MID-TERM EXAMS no ABSENCE and expecting to get fired from the team and if that happened these BULLIES in school should watch their backs and find some strong friends bec. they are gonna have hard time in hospitals when i’m done with them as well as i’m going to have hard time at home bec. of getting expelled hah ANYWAYS I’M 13 Ys old NAME:TAMEEM

    THANKS FOR THE ADVICE MARK BUT JUST PLEASE DON’T RUSH IT OR AT LEAST GET GOOD REST BEC. becoming from a PRO ATHLETE to a little grandpa is like going to HELL if you’re in my same condition please take your time BEC. YOUR LEG IS MUCH IMPORTANT THEN SOME STUPID MARKS OR A TEAM

  168. KevinM

    Love this article, cant believe its getting comments after 6 years.

    I used to be a frequent ankle twister with similar attitude.

    Here’s a bit of advice, stand on one leg at a time for as long as you can, at first every night, until you can go a half hour uninterrupted on each side, then once or twice a week. Sounds like a lot but can be done watching tv sports.

    It builds up the muscles and tendons to they get super strong and twist less often. I went from once or twice a year to once in five years doing the same sports things.

  169. Madi

    Ok so the doctor said I sprained it so much that anymore I would have had surgery. That was Monday. So I’m going on a snowboarding trip the 17th of this month could I go? I’m in a boot right now just got off crutches. I can walk about 10-12feet without the boot. I’ll just be riding up and down no terrain park. Sadly.

  170. Alexandra

    I totally agree with this article! After the first 48-72 hrs, RICE has no real benefit. I’ve suffered from weak ankles and wrists from tendonitis for years. A doctor described it this way, “Your tendons are like a rope. When a rope gets a slight cut, all the little fibers that make up that rope begin to fray. The rope gets weak at that spot, and all those little fibers stick out from the rest of the rope forming a ‘knot’ at that point in the rope. Thus, what may appear as swelling is actually just a severely frayed tendon and in time it will heal and shrink.” Well, that makes sense! I went to that doctor after the first one I went to told me to treat flare-ups with ice. I saw no improvement, so I saw another doctor. His advice was TOTALLY DIFFERENT, and EFFECTIVE! “Don’t put ice it. Ice is for swelling, not for healing! It shrinks the tendon and adds to the fraying process because you’re trying to stretch it but it’s too cold to stretch, so all those tiny fibers snap and fray even more. Moist heat is your best bet. Don’t pamper your joints, stay active with a variety of activities.”
    Well, 2 wks ago I pulled a doozy and missed the last step in my carport. My husband called an ambulance, because I was just sure it was broken. It hurt so bad, I thought I would throw up! X-ray showed no break or fracture. I used my mother-in-law’s walker for the first 3 days, then switched to using her cane. (I wasn’t taking anything she needs. She was able to stop using them once we got her into a regular exercise routine at 80-yrs-old!) I use the cane mostly when I’m cooking in the kitchen, because I’m still having a lot of trouble with balance when I turn around. I’ve been following a regular routine every day of stretches, flexes, balance, and mobility. I’ve already learned over the years that if you don’t use it, you lose it! Mobility is key to anything, whether it’s daily or a sudden injury. Stiffness if always the worst first thing in the morning, so I use the cane to get me started. New bruises are still popping up (even on my toes!), and swelling is still there especially if I’ve overdone it for the day–which I have a bad tendency not to pace myself, gotta work on that! I know that it will take quite some time for it to heal completely…could be weeks, could be months…so I’m not getting anxious or worried that I haven’t completely bounced back. Frayed my Achilles several years ago, and that took a good 6 months before I walked without some stiffness, so I’m mentally prepared for a long haul with this one, too.
    Thanks for this article. I hope everyone takes it heart…and don’t use ice after the first 48-72 hours! You’re only hurting yourself and contributing to long term stiffness and immobility! Oh, and don’t eat junk food while you’re healing. Focus on fruits and vegetables. They are natural diuretics and will help reduce fluid and shrink swelling.

  171. Emad

    Hi, what interests me is the fact that u decided to ignore what doctors say and started looking for solutions on ur own. I do the same and this helped me in many situations. However, theres this one problem ive been going thru that i cant seem to b able to solve.
    Its my left ankle. In the beginning it was the whole left foot. One day i went running and the next day i woke up completely unable to apply any pressure on my left foot. Pain was out of this world that i literally grabbed my whole left leg to avoid applying any pressure on the foot. It took several minutes till i was able to move carefully. Ever since wenever i woke up am always unable to walk on the left foot but after several attempts and not being a whining bastard i manage to walk and the pain starts to fade.. Back then the pain focused on the ankle and whole back lower area of the foot. By time, and am talking abt 3 yrs now, that issue was of no importance. The pain is there, but its minimized a great deal.
    Few months ago i woke up and i cudnt walk again, but this time it wasnt my ankle, it was the front part of the foot, that cusioned area from below and the exact centre of the foot from above. Again, i had to grab my whole leg to b able to walk. And again, took several minutes and i was able to walk…but i limped. This one took some time, whenever i woke up i cudnt walk. Had to keep standing on it for some time and apply very gentle pressure on the area till am able to walk carefully. However, whenever i sat down or stopped moving, the pain strikes back, and if i stand up i wudnt b able to walk immediately. Had to stop and sort of synchronize the foot to b able to walk..and i limped wen i walked. This took abt a month. Then twitches started to take place with the biggest toe and the one right next to it. Sometimes twitches were really intense that i cud feel my whole front part of the footbbending. Not bending hard of course but i cud feel as if something is applying pressure on the that part. Sometimes i felt those twitches were connected to the shin. Pain is minimized now a great deal and twitches are almost completely gone. And if i sat down i can stand and walk immediately and no limping.
    Whats weird now is that i noticed that i enjoy applying pressure on my left ankle. That area right below the ankle. I do it with my right foot. I position my right foot on that lower part below the left ankle (the inward side) and i enjoy doing that for long times till my left foot numbs and i feel a gentle strain on my left shin, which is enjoyable! Yet theres a gentle pain but i feel the urge of producing that pain, it feels nice! I noticed as well that i enjoyed rapping my lower left shin with elastic bands and extending the band to include the foot around the ankle. That felt awesome! I do this now wenever am home.
    I can move my foot im any direction and i can do watever i want. However, if i try to bend my foot inwards or point the foot to the right, i feel pain right on the ankle bone, that protruding part. Its no killer pain, but its pain and it denotes that smthg i wrong there. Recently i started to realize that this pain is somehow linked to my shin. The front part of the lower leg as well as the left part of the leg that extends above the ankle (outward part of the leg). I wud feel the pain as well on the foot connection with the leg, that exact part where the leg ends and connects with the foot (front part not backwards). As i type this now i feel all those parts r alive! Its not pain, but it sometimes feel warm, not by touching them, not the skin, but from inside. Maybe the tissues, muscles, blood, i dont know, but i feel them all.
    I did alot of search and failed to come out with anuthing.
    Am an athlete, i do body weight exercises. I cant run for long distances cuz my both shins kill me. So i decided running isnt for me. But i cud run slightly longer distance while applying shin bands. I always loved the feeling those bands gave me.
    I take multi vitamins and whey protein. Cud any of these relate?
    I saw a doctor and basically absolutely nothing happened with his advice. Cant even recal wat he said, was a useless visit. I mite b seeimg another one tho.
    Appreciate ur reply.

  172. Wooosy

    Top banana article! Fell off a quad bike whilst in cambodia but rather than rest they walked me to a spa and had some deep tissue massage right on the swelling (nearly passed out a few times with the pain)…
    But am walking even with the swelling and their moto unlike the wussy physios in the uk is the more pain the better it is for healing – Am fine now only after a few days massage and they said forget ice/heat crap just get the blood in there by massage.

    Therefore as you said it just keep on goin….


  173. Chris Dillard

    I literally dislocated my ankle, it’s wobbly like jelly….think I’m going to be off it for a while 😔

  174. That’s good to know because I’ve been taking pain killers and walking on it – I don’t have any choice right now. Whoever sets up the timing of these ankle sprains messed this up one big time — this last week was the ONE week I didn’t need this to happen. It’s badly swollen, but I’m still walking on it. So it’s good to know that it’s going to be swollen for a while. Excellent advice.

  175. i see it now this not fair my friend name tommy is guy friend he got trip on his sitars third and he was crying really bad hurts him so bad made me cry all about it I doint know what to say about It all my friends will seen it everyone thinks about him worryied about him I felt bad is not good im soo sorry I have story about my friend going to hug me be my best friend I have something for him he have cast his foot he got spread twist his ankle my friends will start cry and I will starting crying horrible terrible bad day for this about my life im third wheel being stressed out I doint know what to say

  176. Ash

    So I got my ankle ran over by a tractor trailer at work the weekend before last. It twisted, bruised and swelled up. I thought it was broken, but the Xray showed no fractures or breaks. I’ve never had any kind of injury that required crutches before so when the doctor told me not to put weight on it, while the paramedic insisted I walked on it 20 minutes after getting clipped by the tractor you could imagine my confusion. This article helped. I haven’t been icing it enough. I plan to change that starting tonight. Thanks for sharing.

  177. Aw. I’ve done it again. Oh well. at least it wasn’t nearly as bad as last time. but on the other foot!.

  178. Francisco flores

    i feel off my long board 4 days ago. and my left legs keep hurting bad and i just dont know what to do. i go to a high school and i have classes upstairs and it hurts bad every time i take a step

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