Thursday, August 6, 2009

Sprained Ankle

Recently I have been playing basketball with some of the guys from my office. It's been good to get a little exercise and get back into playing some ball from time to time. Chinese people have a growing passion for basketball and some of the guys I play with can play pretty well. The only big aspect of the game that seems to be missing when we play is any kind of cohesive team play. The games mostly alternate between one guy shooting up an outside shot or another guy driving to the basket as close as possible then throwing it up. I rarely see people trying to work it into the middle, doing pick and rolls, driving it and then kicking the ball out, or anything like that. I guess that kind of stuff might take longer to develop than some of the other fundamentals like shooting. Maybe I'm just overestimating the type of play that should be going on for just a pickup game, though. Another thing I have noticed is that pretty much no one will shoot threes, which in the past few years has pretty much been my specialty. It's good, though, because it has forced me to change the way I play and try to drive to the basket more often.
I had been playing fairly regularly until a few weeks ago. One night when we were playing, I jumped up for a rebound and landed on someone's foot coming down and sprained my ankle pretty bad. I've had a lot of sprained ankles in the past from playing basketball. Maybe I just have weak ankles or something. After I sprained my ankle, all the guys I was playing with wanted me to sit down and take off my shoe, but from my experience I knew that if I did that my ankle would swell up big time and I would be in trouble. I figured that I could just walk around for a little while and keep the ankle loose and shake it off as I have done a lot of times before. However, after a few minutes, I could tell that this one was more serious. I made the thirty minute bike ride back home from the gym and my ankle felt ok during the ride, so I thought that maybe I was going to be all right, but the longer I waited, the more tight and swollen it got.
Ankle on the Night of Sprain
Ankle on the Night of Sprain
The next morning when I woke up, my ankle was extremely sore and I could barely put any weight on it. Since I live on the sixth floor of my apartment building and there are no elevators, I couldn't imagine going down all those stairs and then either riding my bike or walking to work like I normally do, so I had to stay home.
Ankle the Next Morning
Slowly my ankle was getting more and more swollen and it was starting to bruise up a lot, especially in the area just below the ankle. It was a bit funny because in the beginning when it hurt the most it wasn't really too swollen and didn't have any bruising. After the one day resting at home, I was able to walk ok and went to work the next day. When I showed my coworkers my ankle, they thought it looked so bad and I had to convince them that it was actually feeling much better. A lot of them told me I should see a doctor and spray some medicine on my ankle, which would definitely be the Chinese solution. I didn't think it was worth it to try to convince them that it is impossible to heal an internal injury by spraying some medicine on the external surface, but who knows, maybe the placebo could work if I just believe it to be true.
Beginning of Bruising
The Fattening of the Foot Bruising in Full Swing
It was a bad time to injure my foot like that because I had a friend coming to visit me in China and we were planning to hike Yellow Mountain, not to mention all the walking around you normally do when traveling around. I had about one week to rest before he was coming, so I tried to sit with my foot up and ice it as much as possible. By the time he arrived, I was able to hobble around pretty well and I made us ride bikes the first weekend since that was a lot easier for me to get around. After that I had another week to rest before we hiked Yellow Mountain and by then I was feeling much better. My ankle felt pretty strong while we were hiking, although it was pretty sore by the time we had finished on the second day.
Fat Foot
Bruising All the Way Up to My Toes
It has been about a month since I first injured my ankle and to be honest, it's still not 100% healed. This is definitely one of the worse ankle sprains I've ever had. Normally, when I was younger, I would always heal up after a few days or a week, but this one is taking much longer. Maybe the injury itself was much worse or maybe it is just that I'm getting older or not in as good of shape as I once was. Either way, I'll be a lot happier when it's back to normal and I can get back to playing basketball and other stuff with no pain.
Here are a few more pics if you want to see my bruised foot in higher resolution:


Phil Dawsey said...

Mad kankle action there! That's the roughest sprain i've ever seen with the whole foot puffing up. Crazy!

Myron said...


Not sure how possible it is but you might want to go get that x-rayed.

I had somewhat of a similar thing happen to me a few weeks ago and I'm sitting around now with a broken foot.

I've read of cases where the bone break is near the base of the ankle so it might feel like an ankle injury but it is actually a fractured metatarsal.