Cross friction massage technique for recovering from ankle sprain. This technique is helpful in breaking down thickening and adhesions of the anterior talo-fibular ligament following a sprained ankle. This injury often becomes chronic thus requires correction of joint mechanics and soft tissue mobilization techniques to restore normal function.
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Hey guys, this is Manu Kalia, physical therapist and herbalist. So in this video I’m going to show you a massage technique, specifically a cross friction massage technique, to help you with ankle sprains. So specifically we’re going to talk about inversion sprains where your foot rolls in, and this is the most common type of ankle sprain where the foot rolls in and it ends up injuring the ligaments on the outside and possibly resulting in the joint alignment being off, as well as if the sprain is strong enough, if you have a severe sprain, you can not only have tears to the ligaments, you can also get trauma or injury to the inside of the ankle too. So this technique is specifically for working on your anterior talofibular ligament, which is the more commonly injured one in this kind of a sprain.
So what we’re going to talk about is that ligament sits right along this area, like this. So this is your fibula and your talus is here. So if I turn my foot inwards, that ligament will be getting stretched. So its job is basically to prevent the over-movement, I guess you could call it, or excessive movement of that motion. So it’s restricting that in addition to a lot of other muscles that are also preventing excessive movement. So if that ligament is injured, if it has some trauma, it can turn into thickening or adhesions that can form or microfibers and tears, and after a while it can become a chronic issue where you end up getting swelling and pain which tends to persist for months, and sometimes I’ve seen patients even after years coming back with that kind of problem.
So besides correcting the joint mechanics, one of the techniques you can do is you can work at doing cross friction massage technique to break down some of the thickening and adhesions that have formed around that ligament and soft tissue. So as I said this is your fibula outside of your ankle, and that ligament is sitting proximately, is the anterior talo fibular ligament, so in the front of the fibula. So it’s in this region right here, and it’s going to be often tender when you palpate it. So if a ligament’s going in this direction, we want to go across the fibers. So what you’re going to do is you’re going to work at, once you find that tender spot, you’re going to work at doing…I can even put my foot in a little bit of inversion to expose it further, and then I’m going to work at doing massage. So I place a little bit of pressure on that, and then I go across the fibers back and forth, back and forth, and cross friction massage. Just rubbing on the skin’s not going to do it.
And it can be tender, so spend about five, 10 minutes initially, don’t put too much force on it early on, and see how you respond to it. So do it once, and then see how you do that day or the next day. If you find out that you’re too sore, obviously back off for a couple of days and then redo it. Each successive time you work on that, you should get better and better or less and less painful, or there’ll be less and less adhesions, plus you’re going to have less and less sensitivity of that tissue. And over time, over a few weeks’ of regular work, in addition to of course correcting the joint mechanics and all the other things, you’ll help at getting that ankle a lot better.
*This information is for education purposes only. Please consult your Physician, Physical Therapist or Wellness Practitioner before starting any rehabilitation, wellness or fitness program. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.