Although this winter has been more mild than most in Minnesota, you can be sure that the temperatures will eventually be in the single digits and lakes and ponds will transform into skating rinks. If you’re going to lace up your skates and head out to the lake to enjoy some seasonal fun, you’ll want to keep a few safety tips in mind so you don’t end up in our office with an ankle injury. Below, we share some tips for protecting your ankles and feet when you’re skating on the ice.
Ice Skating Ankle Safety Tips
Here’s a look at some of the best ways to protect your ankles and feet when you’re ice skating.
1. Lace Them Up Right – Lacing your shoes properly goes a long way in helping prevent foot or ankle injuries. If you don’t lace them tight enough, you may be prone to rolling or spraining your ankle. On the flip side, if you lace them up as tight as possible, you may inhibit healthy blood flow to your feet. This can lead to numbness, loss of sensation and even nerve damage. You want to lace your skates so that you’ve got a snug but not overly tight fit.
2. Slowly Warm Up – You should always take a few minutes to warm up and ease your muscles into activity, but this is especially true if you haven’t been on skates since last winter. You’re going to be working muscle groups that you didn’t even know existed, so you need to help them prepare for the upcoming activity by stretching and preparing for athletic activity.
3. Be Aware Of Others – If you’re at an open skate, be aware of others around you and be sure to skate in the same direction as everyone else. If you’re playing a game of pick-up hockey, it will be a little more chaotic, but try to be aware of your position relative to others so you can avoid collisions.
4. Don’t Overdo It – If can be fun to see how fast you can go or to stay on the ice for hours, but you want to stay in control and gradually increase your time on the ice. Your shins may only be slightly uncomfortable in the moment, but you can bet you’ll feel them tomorrow, so don’t spend too much time on the ice early in the season, or you may develop overstress injuries.