Want to squat better? Tired of knee pain with running? Has your ankle not felt right since you sprained it? You might want to check your ankle mobility.
Ankle dorsiflexion mobility is one of the most neglected factors in rehab and fitness. What’s ankle dorsiflexion? In short, it’s your ability to bring your knee over your toes without letting your heel off the ground. Having adequate dorsiflexion mobility is imperative for proper squat and lunge form, balance, and running mechanics.
Here’s a quick video from my mentor Phil Plisky on how we measure ankle dorsiflexion.
Limited motion on this test can lead to a whole slew of problems. For example:
I see a lot of patients with hip and knee pain. Commonly, I’ll uncover a significant deficit in ankle mobility on the same side as their pain. This is typically due to an old ankle sprain that they just rested until the pain and swelling went away. I love when I see this, because a lot of times, if you just free up the ankle, the knee or hip pain magically goes away.
If you have limited ankle mobility, here is a great exercise to try:
This exercise won’t fix everyone’s restricted dorsiflexion (because there are a lot of different things that could be causing the restriction), but many find success with this.
If you struggle with ankle pain or tightness, be the first to request my upcoming FREE eBook, "9 Simple Exercises to Quickly Ease Foot & Ankle Pain", by clicking here.