Ankle stretches are critical before you play volleyball, because you need your body to be ready for direction changes, jumping, and dynamic movement. Flexible ankles also help reduce injuries and improve mobility for athletes.
Taking a few minutes to add these stretches into your volleyball warm up routine can make a big impact on how you move through practice and games, and can have a significant impact on preventing injuries.
If you want to learn more about ankle injury prevention in volleyball, take a look at Lasso Volleyball Compression Socks. They help support and stabilize your ankle by mimicking some of the benefits of ankle taping without restricting motion.
Good old ankle rolls are a classic that always provide benefit. To do this exercise, lift one leg in the air, and roll your ankle clockwise 10 times, and then counterclockwise 10 times. Start with small circles and then work to larger circles, and do this routine 3 times.
In and Out
This is a great partner stretch and it helps with ankle inversion and eversion (left and right movement). If you don't have someone with to you, feel free to use a resistance band or towel instead.
Fully extend one leg in front of you and use a partner/band to pull your ankle to the left. Hold for 30 seconds.
Then repeat with your foot and ankle pulled to the right for 30 seconds.
Lift one leg in the air and use your big toe to write the letters of the alphabet in the air. You'll be feeling some fatigue by the end of the alphabet. When you finish, repeat on the other foot.
Single Leg Calf Raises
Start standing with your feet shoulder width apart. If you have trouble with balance, stand near a wall, and alternatively, if you have great balance, stand with the balls of your feet on a stair or a bench with a wall or support near you.
Slowly lift your heels up and stand high on the balls of your feet, and then slowly release back to your neutral standing position. If you are on a stair, your heels will be hanging off still.
Repeat 10 times and then rest for 60 seconds.