Ankle and Knee Mobility; Pain Free Movement

What’s up everybody, welcome back to Fighting Champions. There has been a buzz word in the fitness industry lately; Mobility. There are three aspects to injury prevention training: strength, flexibility, and mobility. Training joint mobility is proven loosen and strengthen muscles, as well as increase the range of motion that is so critical to everything we do as fighters. Joint mobility is defined as the ability to control a joint in it’s full range of motion.

First off, the ankles. The base of everything you do. Sprains and all sorts of other injuries can occur in the ankles, quite easily. This can help decrease the chance of things like landing wrong, or keeping a strong base.

#1. Ankle Rocking

Stand perpendicular to a wall. Place one hand on the wall for balance and rock back and forth on your feet without using your calves. Allow the ankle to move through it’s full range of motion.

#2. Foam Roller Ankle Circles

Lay with both legs flat on the floor. Put a foam roller under your achilles tendon and circle your ankle around it’s full range of motion. Do about 30 seconds clockwise, 30 seconds counterclockwise. Perform with both legs.

#3. Banded Flexion

This one’s really simple. Sit on your butt with legs in front of you. Put a band around the toes and the other end in your hand. Slowly move your toes away from you and towards you.

#4. Banded Anti Flexion

Exactly the same as banded flexion, except the opposite way. Tie the band around some sort of post, put the other end around the top of your toes, and work the anti flexors.

Next up, knees. Knee injuries are common, and can put you out of sport for a long time in recovery. They are extremely painful and can sometimes impair your ability to walk or squat. So, knee mobility is important.

#1. Skater

I call this the skier because it simulates the movements. Stand with your feet shoulder width apart. While you leave your two arms straight down, shift them to one side of your leg and shift your legs to the other side, bending sideways at the knee. You won’t have much range of motion at first, but it’ll come. Don’t overdo it, you don’t want to injure yourself.

#2. Inside Roll

This one starts out with feet wider than shoulder width apart. I can’t really describe to you exactly where they should go, it’s personal preference, but get them decently far apart. Put a hand on each knee, and circle them both towards the inside. Move slowly, taking the joint through it’s current range of motion.

#3. Outside Roll

The outside roll is similar to the inside roll, but you’re circling towards the outside this time.

#4. Leg Mixers

Possibly the most fun out of all of them, eggbeaters are sure to get your knees to the limit. Lay flat on your back, legs off the ground. Point your thighs towards the ceiling and spin your lower leg in a circle. Once you’ve gone clockwise for while, switch. It’s all about the movement.

Just because you don’t have pain now, doesn’t mean you won’t in your future. Knee and ankle pain is extremely common especially as you get older, and this is where the term ‘prehab’ comes into play. Build up the joints before they become an issue, you won’t regret it. This is Fighting Champions, The Future of MMA.

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