Maybe you do fun exercises for your thighs and butt, but what about your ankles? Strong and flexible ankles will protect you from injury and improve your balance.
While you may not have enough room to do sun salutations in your cubicle, many ankle exercises require nothing more than standing room. You don’t even need your sports shoes because bare feet often make the movements more effective. For starters, try these 3 yoga inspired exercises for your lower legs.
Hero Pose: Like the name suggests, this pose is like Wonder Woman treatment for your ankles. Sit on the floor with your knees bent and lower yourself down onto your heels. If that hurts your knees, sit on a pillow or a book until your thighs become more flexible. As you progress and your knees strengthen, you may be able to sit on the floor between your feet and then lower yourself back onto the floor.
Single Leg Split: Most standing balance poses will give your ankles a workout. Try this one by starting in a standing position. Shift your weight onto one leg. Gently bend forward and let the other leg rise up behind you. Repeat with the opposite leg. You can start out with your hands on the floor in front of your foot and then work on drawing them back. Eventually, you may be able to hold your ankle while you balance.
Toe squats: Doing squats on your toes is great for conditioning your ankles and your whole lower body. Start in a standing position and rise up on your toes. Lower yourself into a squat and back up again. It’s harder than it looks to keep your balance so be patient. Leaning your weight forward a little will help.