The Horse Forum banner

1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
824 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys!

For the past few months whenever I ride, my right ankle starts throbbing and aching, starting at the tendon around my ankle and going all the way up to the side of my calf. It's been getting worse, and it's extremely inconvenient because I have absolutely no use of my right leg once the pain kicks in. I can't even force it down because it almost feels as if its locked/jammed. I have tried stretching it out but it doesn't seem to make any difference...Has anyone else had this problem? If so what was it and how did you fix it?

I really need to get it checked out, but with school and what-not I really don't have time at the moment. It's just so frustrating because after the first 15 minutes of the ride I can't to anything with my right leg, ugh! Oh, and if this makes a difference, a few years back when I was little I noticed it vaguely aching but I didn't think much of it at the time...

Any ideas? Thanks! :)
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,892 Posts
Get stirrup turners (western saddle) and it will go away. It sounds as if you are fighting the leather for position. Your ankle is losing. Stirrup swivels cost around $25/pair and make a huge difference in your ankle/knee/hip flex points. Good Luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
824 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Hmm...but wouldn't it be on both ankles then? And I ride English...but I do have flex-y stirrups, you know those shock absorbing ones.

Thank you!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Same thing happens to me! Except, it's usually my left but can be the right or both. I'm interested to see what some people say. (I ride english)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,224 Posts
No idea what it could be. I have crappy joints for various reasons and for the past few days my left ankle has been bothering me. After I rode today it was really sore and stiff. I was talking to my trainer about it and she told me I should get some emu oil to put on it. She said it helps her with her joints. I forgot to get some on the way home so I haven't tried it but I thought I'd put that out there.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,892 Posts
It is honestly just the way you struggle against your leathers. I have had this problem for years. You end up putting a lot of weight on the outside of your foot (think pinky toe) in order to keep your toes forward and your heels down. This process stretches the outside tendon in your ankle joint area. The combination of trying to keep toes forward, heels down and posting from your lower leg instead of thigh/core makes it burn after about 10 minutes. Once your stirrup swivels freely, you have one less thing to fight against and the muscle can develop on its own without forcing it into an uncomfortable position.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,863 Posts
When I ride with a tight-ish stirrup, my left ankle aches horribly ever since I sprained it last January. It was so bad I was out of school for 4 days plus the weekend between day 3 and 4. It left a huge amount of scar tissue in my ankle/heel, which will increase my chances of getting gout when I'm older (yay :-(). And like you, I had always had discomfort in my ankle.

Its gotten a lot better over the past year, but I found that in the earlier stages, sometimes it helped to let the stirrups down a hole, or just take my feet out of the stirrups altogether. Granted this isn't the cure all, and definately a temporary fix to the ankle pain. Did you have an ankle/leg injury that you could think of in the past few months that may have increased the strain on your right ankle?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,860 Posts
I would advise that you take a closer look at the boots you are riding in.

That is the problem an awful lot of the time, rather than the stirrups.

Many people, not saying this is case here, will try a boot or shoe on with whatever foot they happen to grab from the box, instead of making sure they are trying boot on same side as dominant hand.

If you are right handed? Measure right foot, and try right shoe or boot on. If you are left handed, left foot gets measured or the shoe or boot.

The dominant side foot will almost always be larger. Might not be more than a 1/4 of an inch, but that is more than enough to make your feet, ankles and knees ache. And in some cases, when I sold shoes years ago. There could be a whole size difference. Most generally it is 1/2 size though.

There will be a few exceptions to this rule, but when you sell "good, expensive shoes" you are taught this right at first.

And it could also be the pants you are riding in. I don't know whether you are in jeans, or breeches or jods.

But jeans are mostly made overseas now, and the whole emphasis on overseas good, is to make them as cheap as they can. If that means cutting material off of the grain, or across bias, they will do it many times.

Then when the garment is sewn? The fabric pulls your legs and bones slightly out of whack. To see what I am talking about? Take a pair of your jeans and hold them up, and see how straight, (or not) the legs hang, and if they twist one way or the other. Most will. Same with jods and breeches if made overseas.

And could be your undergarments, or the waistband constricting your blood flow on that side more too.

When you take off your boots, pants, undergarments, run your hand over the lines any of those might have left, and feel for soreness.

If your boots are genuine leather? You can wet newspaper and stuff it tightly into the boot or shoe. Or you can use plain alcohol, and take a washcloth and get it wet, and use it to dampen the inside of the leather, and then wear the boot until it dries, either of these methods will stretch the leather and may give you relief.

Or a shoe shop can do it also for a small price.

And try on boots at end of day, when feet are swollen too, as will be bigger then.

Another thing, if you are an adult and have had children, or you have gained weight, or just aged period, yet are still buying the same size shoe as you wore in HS or college? You need to have your feet measured, as all of those things will cause you to need bigger shoes. And a too small shoe can cause major problems and make you miserable.

It may be the saddle or stirrups, but I would sure take a look at the footwear you ride it too.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
824 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Wow thank you for all of the replies! Corino-that definitely makes sense, I'll have to look into that :)

A Knack-never had any problems/injuries before

Palomine-I'm actually only in my mid teens, and am left handed :wink: Oh, and I ride in breeches and ariat field boots. I'm definitely going to look into what you're talking about, I've never heard about that...very informative btw so thank you!

In the mean time my parents are trying to find some time to schedule a trip to the doctor to make sure there is nothing medically wrong with it.

Thanks a bunch guys! :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,860 Posts
Before doctor visit, also check out any other things, like if other shoes or boots also do this, and when?

If sitting down, in car riding, walking? Does this happen more on rainy, wet days? Are you walking on outside or inside of that foot more, torquing the ankle in the process?

And also consider how you stand or sit? And a trip to a chiropractor for you might be something to consider too.

Your hips could be out of alignment, or spine or neck, and put more pressure on that side and that leg and ankle.

Just thought of this? Has the horse itself been adjusted by a chiro? He could be off too, and the way he moves, even if just barely there, could result in you adjusting to compensate for it, even if you aren't aware of it.

Even a very subtle bit of gait problems can have an effect.

And wear some hard soled shoes and go to a mall or store with really good acoustics, so that you can hear your foot falls with each step.

Listen and see if you are in rhythm, or if one step is lagging, dragging, or flopping some. Much like you would do with a horse in a PPE. Take another horse person with you to listen if you need too.

And one other thing too, and just thought of this. It could be that the leather on that boot is stitched and pulled different, so that it pulls on your foot weird.

Even the exact same style, in the same size, in the same brand, I have found that each pair of shoes will fit different.

Found that out when buying Nikes for son, he tried on a couple of pairs that were identical, except different pairs?

And he found quite a bit of difference in how they fit? Never would have thought that, but I tested it out, and found it to be true.

Have my fingers crossed. And, although I am not H/J, field boots are tall ones, correct? When you have your leg flexed as you would be in saddle, that would make your calve expand and could also be compromising blood supply to that leg possibly? Or torquing your leg on that side oddly?

Let us know what you find out, could be really great information for all.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
824 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Thank you for your post!

Haven't noticed anything different according to the weather, but I have noticed that when I drive my ankle kicks up. I also realized last night that in the summer I used to complain about my right stirrup always feeling shorter, even if it was longer, and now I have realized it's because my ankle was stiff. Oh, and yes my horse has been adjusted by a ciro a few times, and they are tall boots :wink:

I'm definitely going to have to check all the fitting of my stuff now that you have brought this up!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
664 Posts
I also have a similar problem with my right ankle... After about 10 minutes of trotting, the muscles in my lower calf start throbbing and burning and it gets really painful. It's not as bad if I point my toes out (you know, the inncorrect way to keep your feet ;) ) so occasionally I'll roll my feet around to help loosen the muscles. I haven't really had this problem before a couple of months ago, but since it's too cold to ride at the place I board I usually only get to ride once a week when I trailer to my trainers barn for lessons in the indoor (during the spring-fall I ride 5-7 days a week.) so I was thinking it might have to do with the loss of muscle from not riding as much...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
824 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Yeah I bet it will help to stretch them every now and then! I know one time when I rode it started hurting, then I got off to lunge my horse, then when I got back on it had stopped hurting and didn't really come back the rest of the ride...so I guess I'll try stretching it too!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
THE SAME THING HAS HAPPENED TO ME FOR YEARS! I’ve tried everything from Roctape to different boots to tons of different stirrups and nothing helped. I could barely ride a couple laps without the pain getting so bad I had to stop. I recently found the Acavallo Opera Stirrups and they are a game changer. I noticed a huge difference almost immediately. I rarely get the pain anymore! I highly recommend trying them!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
11,637 Posts
MODERATOR NOTE

Please realize this thread is from 2011 and the users may no longer be around to receive or reply.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
107 Posts
They make Tucker Ergo stirrups that allow your stirrup hang at an angle. I read many reviews and they speak of it stopping the pain. I just ordered a pair for my Western saddle, but they have not come in yet. I too suffer from damaged ankles from a job I had that required me to carry a lot of weight in and out of trucks; going up and down steps.

So, I hope you find something that will help hold the stirrup in English gear at the angle you need to stop the pain.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top