Not so important right, it’s just ankles?
Where does all the force your driving through in a deadlift or a squat start from? The floor! The first hinge point is the ankle, and it always gets overlooked.
Here we will show you three simple ankle mobility exercises that will dramatically increase your range of motion allowing you to life more, be stronger and get you that one step closer to your goals.
First mobility exercise
In this exercise sit on the ground with one foot forward and that heel firmly planted to the ground. Then drive your weight through your front foot, stretching out you Achilles. The aim of this stretch is to close the angle between the knee and the floor. The heel must be touching the ground the whole time to create dorsi flexion. Aim for 3 sets, each holding for 10 seconds.
Essentially, this is a reverse of the first exercise. Firstly tuck your foot underneath your bum. Lift your knee from the ground whilst applying pressure through the floor from your bum. This will stretch the front of your ankle, called the ‘soleus’. Here we are increasing the angle between our shin and the top of our foot, the exact opposite of the first exercise. Aim for 3 sets, again holding for 10 seconds.
The last exercise you will need a resistance band and something to elevate your foot. Place the resistance band around a pole and loop around the bottom of your foot on the Achilles. In this exercise your placing your foot onto the step to create a greater range of motion. As explained in the first exercise, you are driving your knee forward to close the gap between your knee and the floor. Be sure to always keep your heel planted on the step. This is done for 3 sets holding for 10 seconds each leg.
Take time to do this before your next lower body session. Add in some body weight squats before and after these mobility exercises to feel the difference! You now have an increased range of motion.
Remember guys, focus on those ankles, make those small improvements and then it’s ass to grass!
Hannah ‘Depth’ Donehue and Alex ‘The Hinge King’ Stevo
Do you need help with your squat depth or technique? Feel like you have hit a plateau with your training? Why not click on the link before to arrange for a free two week trial at your closest RBT.