Jogging & Running/Calf stretch

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Question
QUESTION: Hi Nick. I hope all is going well. I twisted the crap out of my left foot and ankle three months ago running on an icy street. It is not 100% but is definitely on the mend. However, when I do a calf stretch leaning against a wall I feel it in my calf with my right leg but with my left leg I feel no stretch in the calf. I feel it in the ankle and the surrounding ligaments. Does this mean anything to you or tell you anything I should address?

ANSWER: Hey Len,

It doesn't surprise me. If you're not having calf pain you don't need to do a whole lot about it. Depending on the intensity of the exercise that you want to participate in will determine if it's worth going to see a physical therapist for. A physical therapist would provide soft tissue mobilization, ankle joint mobilizations, possibly dry needling, and some targeted exercises for the ankle that will help return it to full function.

If it's on the mend and you don't plan on running and cutting or jumping rigorously in sports you'll probably be fine to keep letting it heal.

Does that answer your question?

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: It answers my question to some extent. I have been running on it and plan to continue to run on it. Eventually I hope it will be fully healed and as flexible and pain free as the other ankle.

Enjoy the holiday.

Answer
It will continue to heal, but without target exercise it won't be 100% normal function. It will likely feel 100% and what you lack you may never notice.

You could try going to see a physical therapist for 2-3 sessions over the course of the next month or so. This way they can provide manual therapy (the mobilizations and dry needling) and exercises that you can perform at home to return it as close to 100% as possible. This is the safer approach.  

Jogging & Running

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Nick Rainey

Expertise

I can answer questions about pain and training program. If there is a question about running that I don't know then I'll do some research and make sure I provide you with an answer.

Experience

I'm a Doctor of Physical Therapy. I'm a track and cross country coach. I train clients throughout the year. I've helped prepare athletes for their NFL Pro Days. I've written articles on running. Finally, those that I work with have less pain and run faster.

Organizations
American Physical Therapy Association- Sports Section

Publications
The 6 Week Workout Program- I'm the author of this book Research Made Simple for Physical Therapists- I'm the author of this Kindle book

Education/Credentials
Board Certified Clinical Specialist in Orthopaedic Physical Therapy Doctor of Physical Therapy BS in Exercise Science NSCA- CSCS and CPT USA Weightlifting Level I NPI- Certified Posture Specialist Total Motion Release Level II Certified Dry Needling

Awards and Honors
National Posture Institute's International Perfect Posture of the Year Award 2011 Clinical Excellence Award- Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions Aegis Therapies Scholarship recipient

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