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How to Avoid Foot & Ankle Injuries While Hiking

How to Avoid Foot & Ankle Injuries While Hiking

December 9, 2022
By Next Level Physical Therapy

Consider These 6 Tips Before You Hit Your Next Trail

Living in Southern California means having access to incredible hiking trails and nearly perfect year-round weather. Just in Santa Clarita, outdoor enthusiasts are able to enjoy a number of breathtaking trails including Whitney Canyon, Bouquet Falls, and Vasquez Rocks. While stunning, these hikes can also take a toll on an unsuspecting person. 

Whether a weekend warrior or an avid hiker, going on a trail unprepared can wreak havoc on your feet and ankles. At Next Level Physical Therapy, we believe that you can avoid many injuries by taking the time to prepare your body and your backpack for difficult terrain. If you are injured while hiking, we can help you recover through a whole-body fitness approach.

Contact our Santa Clarita studio today at (661) 383-9828 to schedule an appointment. Whether you want to get in shape or need to recover, we can help. Call now to get started.

1. Invest in Good Hiking Boots

If you plan to go hiking, you need the right gear. Hiking boots are designed to help you avoid slipping or rolling your ankle on uneven terrain. Without proper hiking boots, you may be vulnerable to serious ankle and foot injuries including sprains, strains, or fractures.

2. Do Some Ankle Strengthening Exercises

In addition to quality hiking boots, you should consider doing ankle-strengthening exercises before going on the trails. Simple movements using resistance bands can help prevent hiking-related ankle injuries. 

Other important strengthening exercises that can help prevent tragedy on the trails include balancing on a single leg or an uneven surface. While some beginning paths may be flat, many hiking trails are uneven and unstable. 

3. Wear the Right Socks

The right gear includes more than just shoes. A good pair of hiking socks can help prevent blisters, athlete‚Äôs foot, and other painful conditions. 

4. Make Sure You Are Properly Conditioned

Getting in a strong, healthy state can help you stay injury-free while hiking. It is important to make sure that you are properly conditioned for the hike that you plan on doing. Strenuous hikes are best left to avid hikers. 

5. Warm Up and Stretch Out

Before you start, consider doing a solid warm-up. Getting your body moving prior to going on a hike can help you stay flexible and may improve your range of motion. Pre-hike warm-ups may include jumping jacks, lunges, goblet squats, and more. 

6. Rest When Needed and Listen to Your Body

If you are on the trail, you need to listen to your body. If you begin to feel pain or discomfort, you need to stop and rest for a few minutes. Taking the time you need for your body to recover will only help you in the long run.

Contact Next Level Physical Therapy Today

Were you injured while hiking in Santa Clarita? We may be able to help. Contact our office at (661) 383-9828 to find out how we can take your fitness and recovery to the next level. At Next Level, we offer physical therapy, athletic performance training, personal training, and massage therapy. Let our team help you reach your fitness goals this year! 

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