Weak/Rolling Ankles as an English Rider - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #21 of 26 Old 03-23-2014, 11:18 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,212
• Horses: 4
Originally Posted by Zeke View Post
Has anyone else suffered from an ankle that hurts along the outside, think right above that circle bone projection on the outside of your foot, and makes putting weight on the outside edge of your foot seem impossible? I suffered through the workout as much as I could and when I got off had slight trouble walking. If I didn't concentrate on keeping my weight to the inside as I took a step my ankle would practically collapse and roll to the outside. I'm sure I could conjure up a diagram if need be, sorry lol!
A similar thing (but without subsequent ankle rolling) happens to me when I spend an extended time riding in short stirrups, posting or sitting. The outside of the ankle starts to hurt and dismounting produces a short interval of sharp pain. I have very strong ankles from extended walking and mountain climbing, and they are very resistant to rolling, so maybe that's why I don't roll, but there is the urge to take weight off the outside of the foot until the pain stops. I wonder if in part it's a muscle cramp (in the muscles of the foot) / blood circulation thing, because it resolves quickly with gentle movement.

Because this is unpleasant, I don't usually ride with short stirrups. Long gives a deeper seat anyway, and I don't bother shortening up for trails. Another idea: If you find your ankles getting even slightly uncomfortable, drop them out of the stirrups and make circles with your feet; this helps nip it in the bud. On long trails rides, this is one of many good reasons to periodically get off when your horse is walking, and walk with it. Improved circulation for you, and for your horse's back; both of you will be much refreshed after a 2-5 minute break like this, and ride more comfortably. My gelding likes to play games when we do this - like having me pick up a stick that he can take off me and walk around with in his mouth!
SueC is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #22 of 26 Old 03-23-2014, 11:34 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,212
• Horses: 4
Originally Posted by livelovelaughride View Post
As for the majority of the ball of the foot - the weight should be mostly balanced, with a little more on the ball or "evenly" across the foot. You describe what I was doing some time ago--placing your weight on the outside of the foot.
Great post by LLLR! One other thing some people may find useful to get more even weight distribution across the ball of the foot, rather than favouring the outside, is to ride in offset stirrup irons. These are designed for close-contact riding, and elevate the outside of your foot relative to the inside, so that your leg physically hugs closer to the horse. The elevation of the outside of the foot actually (for me anyway) means the inside of the ball of the foot naturally gets more contact with the stirrup. This also makes you less likely to lose stirrups.

Take care not to mount offsets with the slope facing the wrong way - the outside of the foot is supposed to be elevated by them!
SueC is offline  
post #23 of 26 Old 03-23-2014, 11:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 5,332
• Horses: 1
I would actually look at other things too.

Look at the shoes/boots you're wearing. Could they be pressing on your ankles on the bone causing the problem? Do you have another set of boots you could wear for a ride to test?

The ballet suggestion was a great one. Releves are your friend.

These exercises are shown in their advanced form, so I wouldn't go as high or arch your foot as much (you can seriously hurt your foot overdoing it), but here's the basic idea: dance.net - 3 exercises to strengthen arches, ankles and feet...ANIMATED! (2211620) - Read article: Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Hip Hop, Tap, Irish, Disco, Twirling, Cheer: Photos, Chat, Games, Jobs, Events!
SueC likes this.

* I'm often reading and posting from mobile and Siri loves to make a mockery of the English language.
DancingArabian is offline  
post #24 of 26 Old 03-26-2014, 12:38 AM
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: North central Iowa
Posts: 1,199
• Horses: 2
This may be a long shot, but do you have everyday foot problems, like a flat foot or your ankles falling to the inside when you walk? Take your thumb and push it as far back to your wrist as you can get it to go. If your close to your wrist, it means you have a flexible wrist, which in turn means you have flexible ankles, which would cause the weakness. Proper inserts will help this problem, and I would think would help strengthen the right parts of your ankle. Just make sure the inserts are nice and hard, not soft, when you buy them.

Best thing would be to visit a podiatrist. I learned a lot.
SueC likes this.

Rusty - a miracle horse Knight - my golden oldie
Vlogging about Midwest trail riding here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_u...tIjwnOxjKzOfjA
Corazon Lock is offline  
post #25 of 26 Old 03-27-2014, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Southern California
Posts: 1,143
• Horses: 0
Thanks for all the new replies guys! Hope they can help others.

I discovered that the pain was pretty much eliminated when I switched boots. When I experienced the pain I was wearing an old stiff pair of paddock boots that I bought on consignment. They pushed against my ankle bone on the outside of my foot causing me to not be able to keep the width of the ball of my foot in the stirrup. Switching to my trusty Tony Lama Ropers fixed all issues with weight distribution in my foot because they didn't cause me pain!

I love longer stirrups, and have been riding primarily western for the last couple of years so long stirrups and these western boots were fine. Since I'm trying to get back into jumping, too much length in the stirrup isn't something I want to have to jump to first.

So glad this ended up being a boot issue and not actually a skeletal/muscular thing entirely. I've been doing some of the suggestions here as well just for future precaution.
SueC likes this.
Zeke is offline  
post #26 of 26 Old 03-30-2014, 10:15 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: Australia
Posts: 3,212
• Horses: 4
DA guessed correctly! Wow, just your boots made that much difference! Glad you're sorted!
SueC is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Popped out ankles and weak pasterns... barrelracer11 Horse Conformation Critique 1 12-17-2012 07:28 AM
rolling my ankles while riding MySerenity Jumping 6 08-20-2012 03:40 PM
Rolling with a rider? PunksTank Horse Training 6 07-28-2012 01:53 PM
Could weak ankles be the cause? (didn't post correctly last time sorry) Lynnie English Riding 3 04-21-2012 08:58 PM
weak ankles or just doing it wrong? Lonannuniel Dressage 5 02-06-2010 12:36 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome