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Programs / Ankle sprain

How to treat a sprained ankle

You may have suffered a sprained ankle from landing on it awkwardly - stretching or tearing ligaments connecting the ankle bones. RICE: rest, ice, compress, elevate is your initial treatment protocol. You may need to see a doctor. Read on for information on causes, symptoms and treatment for your sprained ankle, including simple exercises.

Download Injurymap's training program for treating ankle pain.


What is a sprained ankle?

A sprained ankle is a very common injury that can occur suddenly during work, sport and everyday activities. Ligaments on the outside and inside of your ankle help keep the joint in its position. A sprain occurs when a ligament is stretched and breaks, which results in reduced stability in your ankle joint.

Causes and symptoms

An ankle sprain is caused by damage to your ligaments, which typically occurs as a result of twisting your ankle. This can happen, for example, when you accidentally step in a hole or land badly after jumping. People with poor balance tend to get sprains more easily.

Typically, you’ll feel pain in the injured joint and the surrounding muscles immediately. Bleeding and swelling will additionally often occur across the injured ligament.

Diagnosis and treatment

Limit the swelling

You can attempt to limit the swelling by adhering to the RICE principle. RICE stands for:

  • Rest
  • Ice (cool your injury)
  • Compression (put an elastic band around your ankle)
  • Elevation (keep your foot above your heart)


Begin active mobility exercises straight after suffering an ankle sprain. Later, you should rehabilitate the lack of balance in the ankle with exercises training the stabilizing muscles in your ankle region. If you don’t proactively perform these exercises, you’ll increase the likelihood of prolonged discomfort. An unstable ankle is likely to lead to further sprains that will increase in frequency over time.

Use the Injurymap screening tool to find out if you are ready to treat your ankle pain with rehabilitative exercises.

Start your training today

Start your rehabilitation program immediately. Injurymap offers you a complete treatment course that gradually guides you step by step through all the different stages of your rehabilitation process whilst ensuring that you do not aggravate your injury. This reduces the risk of ending up with a permanently unstable ankle and repeated ankle sprains.

Examples of good exercises and stretches for Ankle sprain:

Injurymap divides your rehabilitation plan into 3 phases

Phase 1

The exercises in phase 1 will pay special attention to your ankle injury. It is important to keep your ankle a...
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Phase 2

The exercises in Phase 2 will help you strengthen your balance and stability around your ankle. Focus During...
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Phase 3

The exercises in phase 3 will help you get back to normal function by training your ankle's strength and mobil...
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Info about rehabilitation and pain

Why exercising helps reduce your pain

The human body is built for movement. If you don't use your body, your muscles and joints will become weaker a...
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How to exercise when you are in pain

Exercise treatment has been shown to be very effective for long-term recovery and pain reduction. Stimulating ...
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The structure of your exercise plan

When we structure your training plan, the damage sustained to your tissue is taken into account, as the exerci...
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Why it hurts

Pain in the musculoskeletal system (muscles, tendons, joints) may be due to many things, but the most frequent...
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