The inspiration for this pose came from watching Dr. Kelly Starrett’s Mobility WOD Bone Saw video. Ankle Churning helped with mobility, but I wanted another level of release especially using the Yoga Tune Up® therapy balls. As you watch, please excuse my posterior! I wanted to show the movement in close up so you can replicate it, using therapy balls to self massage your ankles at home.
Amalea Fisher is a certified Yoga Tune Up® instructor. She started practicing YTU after experiencing debilitating neck pain and it had an immediate impact when nothing else worked. 2013 found Amalea fresh off a serious illness where could not practice Yoga Tune Up® for some time. This was a reminder for her how essential YTU was to her well being and motivated Amalea to follow her dream of sharing Yoga Tune Up® with others. Amalea wants to help everyone achieve a better body within a therapeutic yoga setting.
Nice one . Love the unique language and your fun vibe as well. Thanks
I’m currently in the YTU training, and found this video helpful in formulating the ankle rolling series I need to present today – thanks!
I’ve done similar with one ball but this is a great idea and I paired with Sitting Seza with Strap and really helped free up issues! Thank you!
I immediately tried this Therapy Ball pin and spin and was amazed about the effect it had on my right ankle (which I broke a few years ago). I´ve addressed the ankle with the Therapy Balls for quite a while now with some pin & stretch on the “scar-side” but with the pin & spin I can really feel the impact on the deep layers of the tissues. Thanks Amalea 😉
I’m always looking for new ways to release and roll ankles. I love the use of extra weight to increase the depth of the release. Thanks Amalea!
Thanks for the simple post. I’ll definitely be showing this move to my sister who has been struggling with her ankles for over a year now! I know this will help her get more mobility and range of motion!
Thank you, that will be useful for my tibialis as well. I have a stress fracture in the middle metatarsals caused by a collapsed arch on my left foot (plus bunion to boot) and my TA is often sore, especially after a lot of walking. I hope this will help to release it!
thank you for great video…simple and effective….look forward to adding to my personal practice rotation
Great use of the therapy balls to improve ankle mobility – However, should you mobilize the joint before a run, be sure to implement a strengthener/stabilizing exercise for the ankles directly afterwards to avoid injury. Otherwise, a great way to release tension in the anterior tibialis.
This is a great therapy to do for sore ankles and fee. I looked this up for someone I know that is currently having ankle issue. Thanks for the great video!
This will be a great pre and post run routine for my husband to do! As for me, I think it will help to open my ankles more for a variation of Janu Shirsasana. I’ll let you know if it works! Thanks!
Last summer I took a barefoot training class with dr. Emily splichal and it as the I found out that I was one of the many people in the world who do not have proper ankle mobility when walking. As a yoga teacher and former gymnast who spends most of her time barefoot, this shocked me. This is a great way to help loosen up the ankle without having weight on it which really helps gain Mobility! Thank so much for your video and your posterior is lovely no need to apologize , lol 🙂
Wow! I did this and added the extra weight from my other leg and had immediate relief in my lower calves and ankles. Thank you for this great video.
Great video on freeing up the ankle. Mine seem to be fairly stiff even with lots of movement through yoga and dance. I love having the YTU release sequences as a complement to movement protocol in order to speak directly with the tissues. Thanks!
Thank you so much, my ankles tend to be a bit weak, I think this will help when they feel a little tight and tense
Oh Amalea, how I love you right now! At least my ankles do. I know I’ve done a variation of this before, but for some reason this was better. As I had just done Laurie’s Calf Relief (http://www.yogatuneup.com/blog/2014/12/19/rolling-for-runners/), I got the brilliant (and painful!, such the good kind!) of getting a second set of balls to place near the Achilles getting the muscles of the calves as well. Oh is it brilliant! There may be some lucky folks who get to experience this tomorrow!
I have scar tissue in both ankles – this is definitely one to add to my routine (can be done after I work on my hamstrings)
I like this idea. It will be next on my list of areas to attack to gain improved mobility.
Thanks for such a helpful article. I can’t wait to suggest this to my running coach who loves YTU. Ankles are definitely the forgotten joint.
thanks Amalea! my ankles have always been junky, so i’m always interested in adding things to my toolkit
Such a great idea! We tend to forget about our feet and ankles, which by the way supports our entire muscular skeletal system. I am a big fan of the YTU therapy balls rolling out all the kinks, stiffness, in my ankles before I put on my shoes to walk or even right after I touch the floor from my bed.
So great! This ones going right in my tool kit! My ankle are so crunchy after several sprains and near breaks from my performance career, Thanks for unobtainable and staying curious about these integral joints.
This blog and the comments that followed were really enjoyable to read. I like the analogy that the ankle is like the ‘neck of the lower body’ and the ankle is the forgotten step child. All those roundish bones that look like pebbles on the beach that can be displaced…..Thanks for the idea of putting the other foot on top of the ankle. I also think it is important than when you bend your knees that you encourage the ankles to bend simultaneously. I often only bend one ankle when I squat in the garden and I’m having to re-train as I was losing ankle mobility in the other.
This looks like a great technique to try. I have pretty strong ankles, but I’m always worried about injuries. Did you feel like this helped with building strength in the area as well?
I will be trying this tomorrow morning after my run. Thanks for this!
Thanks Amalea! I tried Sitting Seiza with Strap yesterday and realized I need to give my feet some tender loving care. Will definitely be adding the pin and spin to the repertoire.
My ankles thank you! Great way to get blood flowing and ease out the stiffness that builds as the winter chill kicks in.
Wow.. this looks intense and wonderful! I’m thinking this might also be helpful in preventing shin splints with the dancers I teach yoga to.? Worth a try! Thank you!
Thanks Amalea! A great New stretch to try out before my run tomorrow morning!! I have had ankle problems for most of my life and am always looking for new stretching techniques!!
Amalea I’m currently going through some ankle/calf issues and I’m going to try this immediately! I’ve actually been to physio four times for it and they have no clue what’s wrong. I’m glad I stumbled across this article and videos I’m going to do this work daily for a bit see if it causes any changes. Enough is enough!
I can’t wait to share this with my triathletes!! Thanks Amelia your awesome!
Thanks Amalea my ankle occasionally locks when I begin a run and I also want to squat without a mat under my heels. This Pin and Spin exercise is bound to help release them . 🙂
Thanks for this option Amalea! I broke my ankle last year and have all kinds of crazy tightness down there. i’ve used the YTU balls down there, but not in this way, and i think it’s exactly the movement i need.
Who doesn’t need this? Awesome lesson! I feel like ankles are like the necks of our lower extremities. When they are a mess, so are our feet and out goes any connection the ground! No connection to the ground/feet = spaced out brain!
The ankles — the neglect “stepchild” of our body. We give attention to our feet, our calves and hamstrings but never seem to give any love to the flexors and extensors. The muscles that surround the ankle respond to a good rolling out with the YTU Therapy Balls. It is great to have a new exercise to add to the repertoire. Thanks for the video!
Genius! I love this move. Can’t wait to squat on Monday morning with new ankles!
Thanks for showing this version with the YTU balls. I like the idea of using the balls and not having to get extra equipment, and this is a little gentler for stiff ankles.
Thank you for the reminder … I did this pose in my class last week and the students squats improved immediately !
Amalea: I enjoyed watching both videos but must admit (even after a try), that using the YTU Therapy Balls seemed not only friendlier but easier to use with my ankle movement.
Once certified, I’m planning my first class around the leg, or below the knee 😉 including the ankle and foot.
That’s for this great and simple techniques using the YTU Therapy Balls.
Clare – you do need to prop the balls on a block or book or sturdy box. You need the full range of motion in order to release from every angle.
Amalea, I bet this feels amazing afterwards, but I’m having difficulty rolling my ankle with the ball propped beneath it. My foot keeps knocking into the ground, so I’m curious as to whether or not I should prop something beneath it (IE: block, books)? Hope this makes sense!
Amalea you are awesome!! Great idea! Thank you!
Excellent, simple and effective. I think the feet, being what ground us to the earth [most of the time} are an important way to begin the day or a Yoga Tune Up. I will add this simple and effective to my classes and my daily routine.
The effect of this blog for greater knowledge to be spread throughout the world is invaluable.
Great video demo and effective mobility. I did this just now on my coffee table and immediate benefits. Thank you.