It’s been reported that athletes suffering an ankle sprains re-injure their ankle 70% to 80% of the time. This leads to chronic ankle instability or ‘functional ankle instability’. Rehabilitation for chronic ankle sprains often includes functional exercises including dynamic closed-chain activities. Thera-Band® products such as elastic resistance bands, stability trainers and balance boards are used for functional rehabilitation.
Researchers at the University of Toledo performed a systematic review of functional exercise interventions for their effectiveness. They identified 6 studies that met their criteria for the review, including 4 that used balance boards and elastic resistance strengthening. The researchers concluded that functional rehabilitation improves dynamic balance and self-reported function in patients with chronic ankle sprains. The exercise programs from the reviewed studies generally lasted 4 to 6 weeks and were performed 3 to 5 times a week. Finally, they pointed out that wobble board training in rehabilitation programs is “supported by the literature”; therefore, Thera-Band balance boards should be a standard component of chronic ankle instability rehabilitation program.
REFERENCE Webster KA, Gribble PA. Functional rehabilitation interventions for chronic ankle instability: a systematic review. J Sport Rehabil. 2010 Feb;19(1):98-114.