Can You Ski With A Sprained Ankle?

can you ski with a sprained ankle

Ski season is just around the corner and you’re eager to hit the slopes – but then you sprained your ankle. I personally know how frustrating it is. But just because of a sprained ankle, some things are hard to sit by without doing, and skiing is one of them. 

Can you still ski with a sprained ankle? The answer is – it depends. The level of severity of your sprain will play a big role in whether or not you can go skiing.

In this post, I’ll dive deeper into skiing with sprained ankles, and some tips and precautions you should take along with a few other FAQs.

Can You Ski With A Sprained Ankle?

You MIGHT be able to ski with a sprained ankle but it depends entirely on the level of sprain and pain. A sprained ankle is a common injury, especially among athletes. It can range from a simple sprain that heals quickly to a more severe injury that takes weeks or even months to recover from. 

tips for skiing with a sprained ankle

There are a few different types of ankle sprains, and the severity of the sprain will dictate how long you need to rest it. A grade 1 sprain is the least severe, while a grade 3 sprain is the most severe. Grade 2 falls somewhere in the middle. Most ankle sprains will heal within a few weeks with proper care.

If you have a Grade I sprain, then there’s a good chance that you’ll be able to ski with some precautions. However, if you have a Grade II or Grade III sprain, then it’s best to sit this ski season out.

If you’re unsure about the severity of your sprain, it’s always best to consult with a doctor before hitting the slopes. They will be able to give you a better idea of whether or not skiing is a good idea for you.

Tips For Skiing With A Sprained Ankle

Just like skiing with a herniated disc, let’s see what precautions you should take if you plan to ski with a sprained ankle. As a fellow skier, I know how hard it is to skip the skiing season. Make sure you follow these before you ski to be on the safe side. 

apply balm

1. Applying Balms Or Other Meds

What comes to mind when there is muscle pain? Balms! So one of the most important things you can do is to apply a sprain relieving balm. You might already have balms at your house or you could ask a doctor to prescribe you one. 

As you might already know, take a small amount and spread it thoroughly on the painful part of your ankle, and massage it for around 5 – 8 minutes. If you are not sure how to do it, ask a friend or a family member to help you put some on. 

You can do it periodically. The more you do it, the pain will be relieved. You can also use sprain relievers if there is no balm. They are also sprays that are used by professionals which can be sprayed on the ankle and it will relieve the pain. 

2. Wrap Up Your Ankle Nicely 

Wrap Up Your Ankle Nicely

You might have already seen sportsmen and women wrapping their thighs, legs, and even ankles with a tight cloth. 

This will reduce the movements around the ankle and decrease the pain. Plus, when you wrap it up after massaging, the balm will be more absorbed, and it will stay there longer. 

3. Upgrade Your Socks

The warmer the sprain is, the more pain is relieved. So how to keep your ankles heated while skiing? Heated socks! They are made specifically to keep your feet warm while skiing. It can be done at different levels. 

However, it might not always be possible to get some heated socks. If this is the case, go with normal ones but make sure they are a bit warm. It also has to be cozy too! 

4. Get Some New And Big Boots! 

You should probably know that boots are a must, and they should fit your leg perfectly. But when you have a sprained ankle, things get different. 

Get some new and big boots

You have to get one bigger than your size because when it’s bigger, it will have better space, and your ankle will not rub on the walls of the boot and not cause your ankle more pain and damage. 

However, this can have a downside too. If it’s too big, you might just skip off of them. So make sure to get one just a bit bigger than you and not too big. Check out our ski boot fit guide for more info.

Is It Bad To Ski Without These Tips Or Precautions? 

It is really important that you follow these precautions or otherwise your ankle will go from bad to worse. If you go skiing without the proper medical equipment, warmth (don’t wear a normal coating skiing), pressure, and space, you might have to take a break from skiing for more than you think. So to avoid that, it is better to take these measures.

Also, keep in mind that you always need to consult a doctor if you plan on going skiing with a sprained ankle! It is better to do all the tests, (and even take an X-ray!) if it’s been days. This will help you to get a better idea and make a decision about your next ski trip! 


It’s important to keep in mind that skiing is a high-impact sport that puts a lot of stress on your joints and muscles. If you have a sprained ankle, it’s important to give it time to heal properly to avoid further injury.

If you have a simple sprain, then you may be able to ski with little discomfort. However, if you have a more severe injury, then it is best to avoid skiing until you have fully recovered. If you do decide to ski with a sprained ankle, be sure to take it easy and ski within your limits. And take precautions in order to not to further damage your sprained ankle while skiing.

Keep all these in mind the next time you hit the slopes and good luck!


Can You Sprain Your Ankle Skiing?

Yes, you could sprain your ankles skiing. Apart from ankle sprains, you could even dislocate a tendon, rupture your Achilles tendon, or even in severe cases, fracture it too!

Is Skiing Hard On Your Ankle?

Skiing is a dangerous sport with sudden turns and riding down fast on a slope will put pressure right on your ankles. To take sudden twists and turns, your foot becomes flat, and your ankle bones become lower. It puts a large force on your whole body, especially your ankles. However if you ski correctly there won’t feel any pain but if your ankle is suddenly throbbing and painful after a day of skiing, there must be something wrong with your boot or skiing technique.

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Picture of Lisa Hayden-Matthews

Lisa Hayden-Matthews

An avid Skier, bike rider, triathlon enthusiast, amateurish beach volleyball player and nature lover who has never lost a dare! I manage the overall Editorial section for the magazine here and occasionally chip in with my own nature photographs, when required.
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