Dealing with Weak Ankles


Weak ankles are no laughing matter. At Texas Foot Specialists, patients with this condition complain of ongoing pain and tenderness and also uncomfortable swelling in the ankle. Worst of all, however, is the repeated giving way or turning of the ankle when walking, participating in sports or even just standing still. Ankles feel weak and wobbly and there’s a constant fear of them twisting and an injury occurring.

Unfortunately, this often leads to a bad cycle—ankle sprains overstretch the ligaments, and this makes them looser and less able to support the ankle and then leads to more sprains. What’s a person with weak ankles to do?

Get an Evaluation

Start by making an appointment at our Pasadena (281) 991-0600, Sugar Land (281) 242-4448 or Houston (713) 664-6677 office. Our podiatrists, Dr. Gregory Mangum and Dr. Bruce Miller, will examine your ankle for signs of tenderness and swelling. X-rays or other imaging studies will be ordered to rule out a fracture and get a better picture of the ankle. Finally, the foot doctor will want to get a medical history and know if you have had previous ankle sprains or injuries and how they were rehabilitated. 

Steps to Stability

Once the podiatrist has assessed your ankle’s condition, the correct treatment plan can be determined. Some areas to consider:

  • Bracing the ankle may be suggested as a way to increase stability and provide added support to the ankle to help prevent future sprains. 

  • Physical therapy modalities and exercises can help tighten the ankle ligaments and strengthen the muscles that support the ligament. It’s also helpful to do exercises that increase balance to help minimize the risk of falls.

  • Choose shoes that do not have high or thin heels and that have good ankle support. High top sneakers and boots may increase stability. Wedges or wide heels are also good choices. For sports, get shoes at a professional fitness footwear store and ask about styles that particularly are designed for ankle support.

If you have additional questions about how to deal with chronic ankle instability, contact us.