It is a known fact that ice skating can exciting but a physically demanding sport that injuries are likely to occur, especially ankle pain. The structure of the lower leg makes the ankles susceptible to stress and injury. In addition, due to the abrupt starts and stops involved in ice skating, these will add strain on the arches, feet and ankles. Using the proper equipment, exercises and treatment options can help alleviate the pain as well as minimize the risk for injury. By enrolling in a class on first aid today, you can learn measures to manage the pain.
How ankle pain starts
There are two main muscles that endure the stress from ice skating – peroneal and tibialis anterior. These muscles are prone to become sore and swollen. It is important to note that the peroneal muscle which contracts when picking up the feet can cause pain on the exterior of the ankle.
Prolonged hours of ice skating can actually weaken the peroneal muscle which is why sprains are likely to occur. As for the tibialis anterior muscle, it traverse down the exterior of the shin. Long periods of skating can cause this muscle to shorten which adds pressure on the tendon and causes ankle pain in the front part.
Treatment for muscle pain
A dowel or thin, round-shape wood at 24 inches long and 1 ½ inches thick can be used to work out sore muscle spasms in the ankles, help stretch contracted muscles as well as increase the circulation.
The individual should sit on the floor with the leg bent while the affected ankle is turned inward and then position the dowel below the exterior of the knee and slide it under the outside of the lower leg. The muscles spasms are indicated by sore areas and you have to press the down against these areas for 30-60 seconds before moving down the leg. Just remember not to push the dowel onto a bone to avoid bruising.
Sprains and strains on the ankle
The ankle pain after a fall can indicate a sprain or strain. A sprain involves the stretching or rupture of the ligaments that connect the ankle bones and there is a popping sound in the joint once the injury is sustained. As for strains, it involves the stretching or tearing of the ankle muscles or tendons.
The symptoms of both include swelling, ankle pain and diminished movement of the affected joint. Both can be managed with the RICE method (rest, ice, compression, elevation). The individual must rest and apply an ice pack for 20 minute every few hours. For compression, wrap the affected ankle and elevate it higher than the heart if possible with cushions or pillows. If the individual experiences reddened skin, difficulty walking, numbness or inability to move the ankle, a doctor must be consulted.
Most of cases that involves ankle pain can be prevented or reduced by wearing good fitting skates with the right degree of flexibility. Take note that the boot must be rigid enough to provide support but not too much that it prevents proper flexion.