WODdoc Episode 67 Project365: Better Ankle Mobility For Better Bottom Position

A lot of people bypass the ankle. Now, when I say the ankle, I’m referring to the mortise joint or, the joint that is formed by the two lower bones of the lower leg (tibia,fibula) and a dome-shaped foot bone (talus). By bypass it, I mean, we spend so much time on the calf we tend to think it is the only limiter of ankle motion. Turns out the capsule has a bunch to do with it too.   If the capsule tightness up too much it can restrict gliding between the articular surfaces of the joint and reduce ankle ROM.

Now, reduced ankle ROM has several implications. Of course there is the obvious… my heels come up when I squat. Worse problems are not so obvious.  You see, humans are the ultimate compensators so if we can’t get the ROM we need flexing “through” the ankle we tend to flex “around” the ankle. This is the position we see when our toes get thrown out way to the sides. When this happens, the arch of our foot drops, and we get an internal rotation effect on the leg. This puts us up for a host of bad things like…. knee problems, hip problems and back problems. Performance wise we lose torque and leak power.

Moral of the story… we need full ankle ROM.

mortise jointkinetic-chain

Picture above:       (left)The Mortise joint       (right) The effect of a fallen arch on the rest of the body.

Today’s WODdocket:

1. Test how far you can push your knee past your toes with your heel firmly on the ground.

2. Ankle Capsule Mobility 20-30 reps / ankle (3 secs / rep).

3. Retest Retest Retest.