I’m going to come straight out and say it. Olympic lifting isn’t my forte. As an athlete halfway between a mesomorph and ectomorph with chicken legs after years of squatting, Olympic lifting is still the joker to my batman. Apparently, physics states that true mesomorphs and endomorphs are going to be naturally better at oly lifts, considering primarily that they have a lower centre of mass which increases their overall stability and have to move the weight a shorter distance from the ground up. Thanks physics...
As the forgotten and neglected uncle of the leg family, the ankle is a joint as detailed as any in the body. Containing 26 bones, 33 joints and over 100 muscles, ligaments and tendons it's clearly not as simple as it may look.
Add in the fact, that it takes on massive forces with landing exercises such as box jumps, cleans, snatches and many other movements found in CrossFit and Olympic Lifting, it's commonly the undiscovered culprit of injuries to the knee, hip and back.
Just like your favourite winter jacket, you expect it to be ready to go all the time and act like new, with years of abuse and little to no care or love.
What we need is a concoction of mobility drills, proprioceptve drills and stability drills to nail all facets, important in getting our ankle ready for training.
Following a gruelling six-month selection camp that included events such as the left arm 1 rep max bicep curl and racing a great white shark I was given the honour to spend 4 weeks with the Average Joe’s down at Evolutio. It wasn’t all sunshine and smiles though. Two weeks before flying over from Glasgow I began to have the nervous shakes about coming to Melbourne and what happened next I will never forget. Team Captain Alex called me and said "Well, I guess if a person never quit when the going got tough, they wouldn't have anything to regret for the rest of their life. But good luck to you. I'm sure this decision won't haunt you forever." Now that may or may not be a quote from Dodgeball the movie and that may or may not have actually happened.
Now I’m not casting aspersions on any childhood songs in particular, but we have a tendency to imagine the body in movement as a rigid frame being pulled on by distinct muscles to produce specific joint actions. eg: the hamstrings pull on the shin bones to produce knee flexion. While this is not technically incorrect, are we sure this is the best way to view and address human movement?
If we were talking about robots, then I think it would be a fine. In that case, treating any pain or dysfunction would be more a case of finding the part that wasn’t working and fixing the hydraulics at that joint.