Question

Watersports

How do I strengthen my ankles for water skiing?

A Answers (2)

  • AToby Garza , NASM Elite Trainer, Fitness, answered
    Proprioception, Proprioception, and Proprioception. Proprioception is the sensory inputs: what you seem, hear, feel, that help you understand where you are. Easily put it is " body awareness". A great was to increase proprioception is through balance training, allowing your body to be put in a situation where it has to recruit muscles to keep you from falling will help you strengthen them. Try single leg balance, then progress to closing your eyes, then to standing on an airex pad. These all should help with your ankle stability.
  • To improve ankle strength and prevent injury it is important to improve proprioception, or the feed back you get from the ankle joint. You can do this by performing a superset of a strength exercise immediately followed by a stabilization exercise that both involve the ankle joint. This type of training requires the use of the following acute variables: 2-4 sets of 8-12 repetitions using a medium tempo for the strength exercise and a slow tempo for the stabilization exercise; rest for 30 seconds between supersets. An example workout to strengthen ankles is: 2 sets of 10 repetitions of calf raises on a machine supersetted with 2 sets of 10 repetitions of single-leg squats. Follow this group with 2 sets of 10 repetitions of seated calf raises supersetted with 2 sets of 10 repetitions of single-leg step-ups to balance. To make the strength exercises more difficult, you can increase the amount of weight you use as resistance. To make the stabilization exercises more difficult, you can stand on less stable surfaces such as a half foam roll, airex pad, or dyna disc. By doing these exercises you can improve ankle joint stability and increase the muscle, tendon, and ligament strength of the ankle joint.
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