Following an ankle injury or after surgery, it is important to exercise the ankle and lower leg to restore strength and as soon as safely possible. When your doctor has determined that you have healed sufficiently, you may be given exercises such as those listed below, to speed your recovery. Check with your doctor or physical therapist before starting any exercise.



Calf raises strengthen the muscles at the back of the lower leg, which may have lost strength while the foot was immobilised in a splint or cast.

  • Ankle curls strengthen the front muscles of the lower leg.
  • Range of motion (ROM) exercise improve the flexibility and mobility of the ankle joint, overcoming the stiffness caused by immobilisation.
  • Calf stretches increase flexibility and decrease risk of injury to the back of the leg.Note: Stop any exercise that causes severe pain and report the pain to your doctor or Therapist.
Standing calf raises
Do as many as are comfortable; start with a few, then gradually work up to your maximum; repeat three times a day.
Ankle curls

Sit on the edge of a sturdy table. Alternatively raise and lower the foot until tired. Eventually, weights may be added. Do three times a day.


Range of motion

While sitting on a sturdy table, write letters of the alphabet in the air, pretend your toes are a pencil.

Calf Stretch
Stand with left foot close to a wall and right foot twelve or more inches behind you. Keep both heels on the floor. Lean toward the wall, bending left leg while keeping right one straight. Hold 15-20 seconds, then switch sides.

Some doctors and sports injury specialists recommend that a recently healed ankle be taped with adhesive tape, or other support, to provide added stability as you resume your activities. Check with your doctor, trainer, or physical therapist for more information.

*These pages are for general information only. Please consult your health care professional for further information, before starting any rehab plan.