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How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury

How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury

The other day I received a message for a workout request. I get these quite a lot, but in the past have never really made a huge effort to address them. 99% of the time the workouts that I post are workouts that I’ve done and want to share with you because I love them.

It’s come to my attention how critical these workout requests might be – if one person is curious about a certain exercise or workout structure, then it’s likely that a LOT of people are also interested in it.

I am adamant to make this website as useful and resourceful as possible, and to help you get fit no matter what stage in your life.

This request I received was from a woman who runs a lot, but recently suffered an ankle injury. The injury stopped her from running, but in a way to keep positive, she reached out to me to help create some upper-body/ankle injury friendly workouts.

Because of this, I decided I would create a full body workout that you can do with an ankle injury. Of course this extends to feet or lower body in general – basically anything that prevents you from putting too much weight on one foot. If you have an air-cast – even better! You can definitely be doing these workouts with one of those on; it can even help you out with some of the exercises (depending on where you are in your injury)

How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury

Perform each exercise for the stated reps below, with little or no rest in between. Rest for 1 minute and repeat for 4 rounds total

How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury #borntosweat

1. Single Arm Kneeling Shoulder Press (L/R) (10 reps): Start in a kneeling position with the injured foot back behind you. If it hurts to lay your foot flat, you can also do this exercise while sitting on a bench. Bring the dumbbell up to your shoulder, keeping approximately a 90 degree angle in your elbow. Squeeze your core and press the dumbbell above your head, maintaining a soft bend in your elbow. Pause for a half second, and bring it slowly back down to the starting position.

How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury #borntosweat

2. High Plank Knee to Nose (10 reps): Start in a push up/high plank position, with your good foot on the ground and the injured leg hovering a few inches above. Keep your spine straight and eyes neutral. Bring your hovering knee in towards your nose, squeezing your abs as you do this. Pause for 1 second in this position, and then extend your leg back out behind you, squeezing your glutes. To perform on the opposite side, you can either repeat this movement on the other leg (if you have an aircast/boot on), or you can get down into kneeling position. Repeat the movement, except on your hands and knees.

How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury #borntosweat

3. Dumbbell Curl to Tricep Extension (15 reps): In a kneeling position, grab the outside of the dumbbell firmly with both hands. Hold it in front of you, with your arms almost fully extended. Keeping your core tight and back straight, curl the dumbbell up with both hands to chest height. From this position, press your arms up above your head, extending your arms. Bend your elbows, bringing the dumbbell behind your head in a controlled movement. Without letting your elbows flare out, reverse the entire movement until you are back in starting position.

How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury #borntosweat

4. Single Leg Weighted Deadlift (10 reps): Stand on your good leg, with your foot planted firmly on the ground. In the opposite hand hold the dumbbell – you can also do this exercise without a dumbbell to modify it. Maintaining your balance, start to bend at the hips, keeping a bend in your planted legs’ knee. Keep going until you feel a stretch in your hamstring. Pause for a half second, and then slowly rise back up to starting position, pushing through your glutes.

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How to Workout with a Foot or Ankle Injury #borntosweat

What About You?!

  • Ever had an ankle/foot injury stop you from working out?
  • What other kinds of workouts would you like to see?
  • Know anyone with a foot injury? Share this workout with them.

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  1. This is such a great post! As a runner I am always looking for ways to workout that don’t put too much stress on my lower legs/ feet.

    • beverleyc

      10 May

      Yay, i’m glad you liked it Diana!

  2. Yesssss! I love that you did a modification workout. I don’t have an ankle issue, but learning how to modify certain things I loved to do now that I’m pregnant is tricky!! That’s awesome that you created this just for one of your many loyal fans 😉

    • beverleyc

      10 May

      Oooo yea i bet you have had to change things up a lot!! You should do a post on it! Haha ‘loyal fans.’ I love it

  3. Samantha L

    10 May

    Thanks so much for this, Beverley! I’ve always been nervous about working out with my ankle injury from years ago and it became a little discouraging at one point because I wasn’t sure how to adapt (so I allowed myself to get a little lazy). Needless to say, I’m very much looking forward to trying this workout! 😀

    • beverleyc

      11 May

      You’re so welcome Samantha! I know the feeling of being unsure about working out on an injury – but its always good to try a little bit at a time so it can start to strengthen. Let me know how it goes!

  4. This looks like a great workout!! I had a bizarre toe injury a few months back that kept me from putting on sneakers (or doing anything that required bending my big toe). It was interesting trying to stay active during that time!! Lots of new stuff for sure!

    • beverleyc

      11 May

      Hahah toes man!! They are just the WORST haha. I would have loved to see what you came up with to do!

  5. Anu-My Ginger Garlic Kitchen

    11 May

    This is such an awesome post with amazing workouts! Will try it!

    • beverleyc

      11 May

      Thank you Anu!! Glad you like it

  6. caileejoy

    11 May

    Beverley! You’re so great! I just love how you adapt the workout posts to fit the needs of reader! You’re awesome! And this workout is great! Perf for someone who wants to stay fit with an injury. Thanks for sharing!
    xoxo Cailee!

    • beverleyc

      13 May

      Aw thanks Cailee! honestly, it’s taken me long enough to do this post at all.

  7. What an awesome workout! That was so nice of you to follow up on your readers request. I’m loving the quality of the videos too. Nice work, girly!

    • beverleyc

      13 May

      Thank you Sarah! i try to do what i can to help! haha.

  8. This is an awesome post and you’re so right- if one person asked for it, there’s a good chance it’ll be helpful for lots of other people who didn’t think to ask! I’ve had mostly knee injuries from running and ended up mostly swimming to recover (b/c I don’t know a ton about lifting!) but those would’ve been such good times to incorporate more upper body strength training.

    • beverleyc

      13 May

      Swimming is an awesome recovery method. It’s almost better than a normal workout itself!

  9. Mable Bailey

    1 August

    Please do more of these! I have a sprain that will take 4-6 weeks to fully heal and I would really like to continue with my progress 🙁

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