Ever had a debilitating long-term injury, you are NOT alone! (Part 1)

Ever had one of those debilitating accidental injuries that leaves you unable to exercise or play the sport you love for months on end? Well half way through 2015, that’s what happened to me. One night at a basketball game after I jumped for the ball, I landed on a player’s foot, inverting my ankle and rolling it severely. After an MRI scan the next day, I found out I actually fractured my 5th metatarsal (pinky toe bone half way down the foot) and ruptured my Anterior Talo-Fibular Ligament (ATFL) on the outside of my right ankle. The ATFL attaches from the fibula to the talus bone at the base of the ankle and is one of the lateral ligaments responsible for preventing excessive inversion and forward movement of the foot. With injury such as this, for proper acute injury management, immediate RICER is your best friend. This will lead to better long-term outcomes post injury.

I spent the next 6 months moving from various casts and then into a moonboot. I can tell you now, that was not a fun experience. Unable to weight bear, unable to work, unable to properly exercise and uncertain about what I was going to do for the next few months.  I can say sitting on your bum for the next 6 months is not the answer.

Firstly, after an injury like this most of your daily activities are compromised, which places more strain on you physically and mentally. I had used crutches to get around and even the simple things like moving around, washing myself or putting on clothes were 10 times harder. It’s almost impossible to carry things when you’re holding onto crutches. You can’t get upstairs comfortably, and even sitting long periods causes discomfort. I am thankful for having my Exercise Physiology background and rehabilitation knowledge about muscular system adaptations. This was probably the only reason I was able to maintain my function and physical conditioning. So, you ask how was I able to first of all be able to keep up my physical conditioning and complete my rehabilitation exercises without causing further injury? I shall save that juicy information for part 2. For more blog topics like this one or to keep up to date with the next instalment, follow Absolute Balance on Facebook.

If you are suffering from an acute injury and want to know how to maintain your conditioning over the injury duration, come see us at Absolute Balance, or you can contact us at info@absolutebalance.com.au. Stay tuned for part 2 of my blog.


Luke Bell (B.Sc. Exercise and Sports Science, B.Sc. Exercise Science and Rehabilitation)

Exercise Consultant – Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP) (ESSAM)

Ph: 08 9244 5580 M: 0432 667 115 Fax: 08 9244 5582



Roche, A., Calder, J. (2013). Treatment and return to sport following a Jones fracture of the fifth metatarsal: a systematic review, Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology, Arthroscopy, 21, p1307-1315