How to get more flexible ankles?

Discussion in 'Health and Fitness' started by Ferret, Jun 10, 2015.

  1. Ferret

    Ferret Valued Member


    Ive never ever been able to get my heel on the floor when doing squats , sitting or side lunge squats, and always sit on the balls of my feet. I've recently taken up yoga, and can't even do downward dog with flat feet.

    It's like my Achilles' tendons is super stiff, and I have very little ankle flexibility.

    How do I get more bendy ankles, without damaging myself? Are there specific stretches for this type of inflexibility?

  2. Johnno

    Johnno Valued Member

    If your joints themselves are stiff then I would imagine that regular movement would be the answer. You can't really 'stretch' your joints in the way that you can your muscles (or not in a good way, anyway.)

    If it's your achilles tendon which is the problem then a good excercise to strengthen it is to stand on a step with your heels protruding over the edge and slowly dip down and up again.

    That's my two penn'orth, but I'm sure Lord Redcoat van Zandt (or whatever he calls himself nowadays) wil be along in due course with better advice! :D
  3. kwtde

    kwtde Valued Member

    flexibility....never had :(
  4. Ferret

    Ferret Valued Member

    Hey Johnno!

    When I had tendonitis in my shins, my physio had me doing those exact same stretches! I'd usually do them on the tube escalators to and from work :) I'll try them again.

    This is what I'm trying to do (random pics)


    But this is what I do instead....just cant get that heel down! :/

  5. crash76

    crash76 Valued Member

    Hi, I came looking for stretches on the soleus and found this!

    I have the same issue in not having great ankle flexibility.

    I have learned that generally its the soleus muscle that prevents the heel from going down. That and the achillies and gastrocnemius.

    The soleus is activated when you do pretty much any calf stretch, but you bend your knee at almost 45 degrees. The large part of the calf attaches above the knee, so when you bend the knee that muscle gets taken out of the equation almost, and the soleus takes over. (the soleus lies under the gastroc and also attaches to the achillies tendon). So any position where your knee is bent and you cant get the heel on the ground, its probably the soleus, (and also to some extent the posterior tibialis tendon.)

    Do a wall lunge stretch, but keep the knee bent at 45.

    Or put the toes and ball of one foot againt a wall, with heel on the ground, the other leg somewhere behind for balance. Then bend the knee to about 45ish, and try and push the knee towards the wall.
  6. 23rdwave

    23rdwave Valued Member

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