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Are You Caring for Your Ankles During Football Season?

high school football team preparing for tackle

Football Season Is Among Us

The start of fall means many things: cooler weather, pumpkin spice everything, and most importantly, football season! Football is a much-anticipated sport for many fans across the country. America’s favorite pastime brings people together to root for their home team weekly.

Football season is an excellent time of year, whether you’re playing in a league, cheering from the stands, or watching on TV. However, it’s also a time when we see an influx of patients with sports injuries.

Ankle injuries are common in football because of the quick movements and change of direction required to play the game. When you add in contact with other players, it’s no wonder many people end up hurt.

The Most Common Football Ankle Injuries

The most common ankle injuries we see in football players are:

• Achilles tendonitis

• Ankle sprains

• Plantar fasciitis

• Heel spurs

Achilles Tendonitis

Achilles tendonitis is the pain or inflammation of the Achilles tendon, which is the large tendon that connects the calf muscles to the heel bone. This injury is often caused by overuse and repetitive stress on the Achilles tendon.

Ankle Sprains

An ankle sprain occurs when the ligaments in the ankle are stretched or torn. This can happen when you make a sudden movement or change in direction, resulting in the foot turning inward or outward. When a sprain occurs, your ankle may feel immediate pain and tenderness.

Plantar Fasciitis

Inflammation of the plantar fascia, the tissue that runs along the bottom of the foot, is known as plantar fasciitis. Overuse and constant stress on the foot frequently result in this ailment.

Heel Spurs

Heel spurs are bony growths that form on the heel bone. They are often caused by overuse and repetitive stress on the feet.

Preventing Ankle Injuries in Football Players

There are several things you can do to prevent ankle injuries when playing football:

  • Wear proper footwear. Make sure your cleats fit well and provide support for your ankles.
  • Warm up before playing. A good warm-up will help to loosen the muscles and prepare the body for activity.
  • Stretch before playing. Stretching the muscles can help to prevent injuries.
  • Be aware of your surroundings. Pay attention to where you are on the field and be mindful of other players around you.
  • Brace or tape your ankles. Ankle braces and tape can help provide additional support.
  • Regularly visit a podiatrist. Regular visits with a sports medicine professional can help keep your ankle injuries to a minimum.

Treating Ankle Injuries

If you do happen to suffer an ankle injury, there are several treatment options available. Treatment will depend on the severity of the injury.

  • Rest: This is often the first course of treatment for an ankle injury. Once the initial swelling has gone down, you can slowly add weight-bearing activities to your routine.
  • Ice: By applying ice to the injured area, you can help reduce inflammation and pain.
  • Physical therapy: Physical therapy can help strengthen the ankle muscles and promote healing.
  • Surgery: In some cases, it may be necessary to repair damaged ligaments or bones via surgery.

Keeping You Off the Sidelines This Fall at Bux-Mont Foot & Ankle Care Centers

At Bux-Mont Foot & Ankle Care Centers, we’re here to help you stay healthy and active this fall. We offer a variety of services to help you prevent and treat ankle injuries.

If you’re experiencing pain or discomfort in your ankles, make an appointment with us today. We’ll work with you to develop the right treatment plan and keep you off the sidelines. Call us at (215) 392-4009 or fill out our online form!