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High ankle sprain/injury adaptation


RichMan
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So I injured my ankle pretty badly at work in June. The verdict so far points towards a high ankle sprain. Had an MRI today and should know for sure where it stands in a couple days.

I'm hoping not to hear the word "surgery" mentioned. I was recommended to wear an ASO type stabiliser to help contain my Tibia and Fibula. It's like a lace-up/velcro straps wrap for the ankle.

If any of you have gone through a same/similar situation, have you worn something in your skate when back in the game? If so, what? Or have you completely refrained from playing until 100% healed? 

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Back when I had that injury, I was still a skater. A skaters boot has a bit more ankle support than a goalie skate, but I never risked it. Waited not only until the doc said I was 100% but until I felt I was. Sadly, that is a long healing process. With how bad walking hurt, couldn't imagine trying to skate on it. At the time I was in the military and soon as the doc cleared me, that gets sent up the chain and my LT decided I was healthy enough to do my physical fitness test and couldn't understand why running hurt. Think that's what made it longer before I skated again.

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The waiting game is a killer. I'm not in any bad pain. I can walk, slowly. Forced by my physio to use a cane to reduce ankle weight load. I get the occasional discomfort and my ankle clicks and cracks a lot. The biggest issues are the lack of dorsiflexion range and load instability. All the ASO wrap does is make my frigging lower leg swell up from the restricted blood circulation.

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I suffered a high ankle sprain years ago. Kept me out longer than shoulder surgery did, I was out around 4 months before I got back on the ice. Was in boot for a while and had to use crutches for a bit. Was in PT for the last 2 months of it. Unfortunately it's just one of those injuries that you just have to wait it out and hope for the best. I don't even wish high ankle sprains on my worst enemies.

When I came back I didn't wear any ankle brace or anything. My ankle and leg that I sprained was actually much stronger than the uninjured one due to all the PT I went though. 

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8 hours ago, SaveByRichter35 said:

Did you at least get workers comp? lol

Yes I am or I wouldn't be able to pay the bill to be able to write this at the moment loll.

Good news, had my MRI and there are no visible tears of any kind. No surgery needed.  It's a very high stress/impact injury that is just taking longer for me to heal. I'm aiming for a January start at the very latest unless I get an early green light :) 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Happened to me several years ago.  I had to wait until I was healed up before I could skate again.  I couldn't seem to fit anything inside the boot of my skate and I lost quite a bit of stability during the 3 month healing process, so I needed some rehab as well.

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I had the same thing happen last year. Tried to get back on the ice earlier than I should have and realized that the best thing for me to do would be to just take time off until it stopped being an issue. I could not drop down to the butterfly without having to use painkillers, and there was absolutely no possibility of using the RVH on my right side because that was the ankle I managed to screw up. I ended up sitting out the entire season and then more because it would still bother me from time to time, so probably seven or eight months in total. Hopefully yours is better.

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Personally, I've suffered 2 of them from over-doing hockey. I feel it every time i skate, player or goalie and for days after. I went to 8+weeks of PT each time to strengthen and learn stretches to mitigate pain/symptoms, but it never goes away because the butterfly position is inherently BAD for your ankles.

I wear elastic toe ties with slack and good supportive True skates, as well at KT tape to limit flex. I also learned to recover out of the butterfly in a way to not put so much strain on that ankle by pointing my toes and being more purposeful with my recovery (Thanks to Francois Brassard at GGSU camp for the tip!!)

Plus, Now I have a cool party trick where if I flex my ankle just right I can make a nice SNAP! sound which is the tendon flexing in my ankle over the bone.

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Hey RichMan,

I went through something similar in the spring. My injury actually happened during a game; I made an awkward toe save after a puck got deflected, my left leg got stuck under the rest of my body and I felt a « pop » in my ankle. It was definitely an ankle sprain (no ligament damage thankfully) but not a high ankle sprain as far as I can tell.

Anyway! I will echo what many have already said and what I learned through my rehab process: goaltending and the butterfly style in particular are very demanding on the ankles! In my case, I was able to walk normally and essentially live my life as before within about a week after the injury, but it was 4 months before I was able to play goal again without any discomfort. Physiotherapy helped a lot, but the average physio doesn’t necessarily understand the stresses that goaltending puts on our bodies. My healing progress improved dramatically when I came across some goalie-specific exercises following an ankle injury by Maria Mountain. I encourage you to do a google search and you should find a couple of videos with exercises to help strengthen your injured ankle in preparation for playing goal again. If I’m not mistaken, I think she has a video specifically on the topic of high ankle sprains.

I hope this will be helpful and I wish you the best of luck in your recovery.

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@CPage I might of seen that video but forgot about it. Thanks for the reminder. My accident happened at work, a freak one that could of been a whole mess of bad that I was fortunate enough to not go through. My physiotherapist is great, she understands what I do for sports and the demands involved. I'm happy that I don't have to go under the knife. Will it be permanent? I doubt it. It just seems to take forever.

Good news is that I was able to do some moderate squats and deadlifts at the gym yesterday so, I'm gaining some ground on my ankle dorsiflexion 😎 

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  • 1 month later...

Small update...

Things are getting better slowly. Swelling is still apparent but I'm told it was a serious enough injury, granted, and it will just have to take its time. I'm thinking my age and somewhat poor circulation is also to blame. I should be good to test things lightly by January. In the meantime I've been hitting the gym rebuilding strength and muscle, zero impact. Still doing some physio. Wish I was biking outside before the snow hits. 

Started a new job that is mostly sitting which allows me to heal some more and the pay raise is comforting.

On a plus plus side, I got a call to coach some pee-wee c goalies. My first step on the ice since June. It will be a light and welcoming time for me with both hockey and my coaching. Things are looking up :) 

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  • 2 months later...
On 11/11/2022 at 11:16 AM, RichMan said:

Small update...

Things are getting better slowly. Swelling is still apparent but I'm told it was a serious enough injury, granted, and it will just have to take its time. I'm thinking my age and somewhat poor circulation is also to blame. I should be good to test things lightly by January. In the meantime I've been hitting the gym rebuilding strength and muscle, zero impact. Still doing some physio. Wish I was biking outside before the snow hits. 

Started a new job that is mostly sitting which allows me to heal some more and the pay raise is comforting.

On a plus plus side, I got a call to coach some pee-wee c goalies. My first step on the ice since June. It will be a light and welcoming time for me with both hockey and my coaching. Things are looking up :) 

How's the ankle doing? Have you returned to the ice yet? I've been dealing with a high ankle sprain I got back in early December. I've been out in my pads at a few stick and pucks since getting "cleared" by my PT and things have definitely improved but nowhere near where I was before. RVH right side is still a bit painful and recoveries haven't been the most comfortable either but I'm getting there. Just curious to know how your rehab has been. 

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@Phil1p33 Thanks for asking ❤️. Hope yours heals well and soon.

I had one free skate as a ref during a game and now trying to organise a drop in practice with a bunch of goalies in Ottawa to break down the rental fees. They want some shooters to work on some drills and a coach to help them out. My goal is to just suit up and do some skating/mobility drills and see how that goes. I'll be too focused on myself to help out with the coaching. I'm hoping it will work out. I'm getting a ton of messages to sub here and there and have to constantly say no until I've tested things. I've played hurt before and now at my current age, it's not worth it. I have too many other activities that I want to continue with and getting hurt again will just screw everything up.

My next ortho appointment is next month. We'll see what happens in between.

I have gone for 2 light runs outside since the new year and it was slightly uncomfortable and sensitive the next day. One more activity to test out slowly and carefully.

On the plus side, weight training has been quite productive, seeing lots of muscle growth and strength increase. A plus for a 54 year old. Keeping the testosterone active :D 

Edited by RichMan
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