As the days warm and the snows melt, more people are hitting the trails for fitness and recreation. Whether you are hoping to hike up Horsetooth Mountain or climb your first 14er, you’ll be crossing uneven terrain where balance is key to avoid twisting your ankle. You’ll want to develop your proprioception through balance exercises to help avoid this common injury by doing the following. Stand on one leg for 15-30 seconds for 2-4 times on each leg. If you need something for balance move to the kitchen counter and let your fingertips barely touch while doing the exercise. When you can maintain your balance without touching and without your body swaying for 30 seconds, close your eyes or stand on a foam mat or cushion and repeat the exercise as these things will increase the challenge. The combination of the strength you build in your ankle and the improved spatial awareness your leg develops will help to keep you hiking through the summer.
If you struggle with hiking, contact us at 970-460-0066 (Loveland/Johnstown/Windsor) or 970-568-8461 (Fort Collins) for a FREE Physical Therapy Consultation.