There is typically only one thing that keeps an athlete from starting rehab and it is…swelling at the ankle joint.
So in order to start rehab right away (after the doctor has confirmed that you do not have any structural damage such as torn ligaments or broken bones) you must get the swelling down.
Most doctors push the RICE program – Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation.
This method is fine if you are a couch potato, but most people who are active want to take action to get their ankle rehabilitated.
Ice is basic to reducing swelling and using an ice whirlpool definitely has advantages over just ice in a bucket because heat is taken away from the ankle so much faster.
But ice is not enough…you must use the muscles and a biomechanical movement to force the swelling out of the ankle joint.
The problem with moving your ankle to reduce swelling is the pain that you are experiencing as a consequence of your injury. The pain keeps you from moving your ankle and foot which the very thing that will help you get better faster.
One place that you can start movement which will help you get the swelling out is moving your foot in large circles and up and down while you have it in the ice bath.
The ice is used as an anesthetic, it really doesn’t help to reduce swelling other than constricting blood vessels so there is less blood going into the damaged area.
Movement of your ankle is the meaningful. The more you move it (especially when you are bearing your own weight) the faster the swelling will go down and the faster you can get started on rehabbing it.
You don’t have to settle for the R.I.C.E. protocol. You can accelerate your healing.
I’ve recently produced 8 videos that answer questions most people ask when they sprain their ankles. You can find them on Youtube. Just go the following link: Sprained Ankle Videos
All of the videos are free and they may help you understand how to get your ankle back in shape as fast as possible.
Good luck and fast rehabbing…