Ankle

What You Need: Sturdy, armless chair
This exercise stretches your ankle muscles. You can stretch both ankles at once or one at a time.
  1. Sit securely toward the edge of a sturdy, armless chair.
  2. Stretch your legs out in front of you.
  3. With your heels on the floor, bend your ankles to point toes toward you.
  4. Hold the position for 10-30 seconds.
  5. Bend ankles to point toes away from you and hold for 10-30 seconds.
  6. Repeat at least 3-5 times.

Safety

  • Avoid “locking” your joints. Straighten your arms and legs when you stretch them, but don’t hold them tightly in a straight position. Always keep them slightly bent while stretching.

  • Always stretch with a smooth, steady movement. Don’t jerk or bounce into the stretch; it may cause injury.

  • A mild pulling feeling while you are stretching is normal. If you feel sharp or stabbing pain or joint pain, you’re stretching too far. Reduce the stretch so it doesn’t hurt.

  • Always remember to breathe normally while holding a stretch.

  • Always warm up before stretching exercises. Stretching your muscles before they are warmed up can result in injury. If you are doing only stretching exercises, warm up with a few minutes of easy walking first. If you are doing endurance or strength exercises, stretch after, not before.

  • If you’ve had hip or back surgery, talk with your doctor before doing lower-back flexibility exercises.