what to do next:
By Rachel Sutter-Leve, PT, DPT
We have all been there... you are in the midst of executing an absolutely perfect pirouette when all of a sudden you lose your balance and you roll your ankle. Like the hardworking dancer that you are, your initial reaction is to pretend like nothing happened and get right back to dancing. But you realize soon enough, that won’t work this time and you limp off towards the barre to try and "stretch it out".
Ankle sprains are one of the most common types of athletic injuries in dancers, so if this has happened to you, rest assured, you are not alone! The most frequent type of ankle sprain is an “inversion sprain” where the foot rolls inward and you injure the ligaments on the outside of your ankle.
So what should you do about it? Here is a step by step guide:
Get off your foot and (RICE)- Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation
After you have done the above, try to take a few steps on it. If you are unable to walk, go to the doctor. They may want to take an x-ray to make sure you don’t have a fracture.
Give your ankle some support by temporarily wearing an ankle brace. If you are unsure of what to buy, contact us and we can make a recommendation.
Once the swelling and the pain have subsided, begin gently moving your ankle until you have gained back all of your range, then work on strengthening.
Schedule a PT appointment. One of the greatest predictors for a repeat ankle injury is weakness in your ankle stabilizers. A physical therapist can evaluate your strength and decide what needs to be worked on to prevent this type of injury from reoccurring.