Ankle sprain, the most common injury for soccer players, is an injury to the ligaments of the ankle. Ligaments connect bones and provide stability for the body’s joints. The ligaments on the outside of the ankle are injured when the foot rolls inward. Ankle sprains can occur when a player is running, cutting, kicking, tackling or being tackled, or landing from a jump.
Another common ankle injury among soccer players is "Footballer’s ankle," caused when bone spurs form on the front part of the player’s ankle on both the shin bone and ankle bone. Doctors believe the repetitive motion of kicking the ball causes the bone spurs to develop. If footballer’s ankle is suspected, the player should see a foot and ankle specialist for an evaluation. Confirming the injury usually requires medical imaging and it may require surgery to correct and relieve the symptoms.
U.S. Soccer’s Recognize to Recover program provides guidance on treating and recovering from ankle injury.
Symptoms of an ankle sprain include:
Initial treatment for an ankle sprain is RICE therapy:
Other treatments may include: