woman jogging after injury

Return to Play After Ankle Sprains

A published study in the American Journal of Sports Medicine studied athletes with first time ankle sprains measuring the ankle instability and loss of function out to a year after the injury. They found that 40% of their patients had criteria that placed them in the chronic instability category. They correlated the tests to see if any were predictive for the later development of ankle instability issues. They believe that there are two types of jump tests that are strongly predictive.

  1. a single-leg drop landing
  2. a drop vertical jump.

They found that if there was an inability to properly perform these tests at the 6-month time point that they were able to assume that the patient would experience instability for on average of 1 year.

A simple sideline functional test is helpful early in the injury recovery process. After rested for a week or two from training having the athlete try a simple functional progression consisting of:

  • Jog comfortably
  • Then sprint comfortably
  • Cut left and right with good speed and proper form
  • Pivot off the injured ankle successfully
  • And finally do a two leg jump with a stable landing

The entire test takes about a minute or two You want to look for the athlete’s ability to progress the tasks and to do so without a limp, without pain, and with normal form. If they pass the test it’s generally ok to resume play. If not, it would be best to have physician evaluation, as these may be ankles in need of some rehab.

Accident Medical coverage is important for all team, league, events and associations to obtain. Sprains can be costly. Make sure you’re properly insured.

For all Sport and Special Event Insurance needs contact o2 Sports Insurance.

www.o2sportisnsurance.com or contact us at 1-855-351-0202[email protected]