Multi-directional lunges are an amazing way to add movement in multiple planes, incorporate sport specific training (i.e. a volleyball dig), and specifically for the ankle, tailor a more specific training regimen for prehab or rehab. Here we are demonstrating a classic multi-directional lunge with some nifty sliders provided by @6directionstm: lateral, posteromedial, posterior, and posterolateral (shown in that exact order).
These multi-directional lunges are GREAT FOR YOUR ANKLE because not only are you forced to bear weight through the front of your ankle the entire time, but by changing the direction you reach, you are adding an element of instability and perturbation in multiple directions. The direction in which you reach highly influences not only what muscles in your ankle are more active, but more importantly for rehab, what movements are occurring at the ankle.
In the posterolateral lunge, the ankle is moving into dorsiflexion and INVERSION. When rehabbing from an INVERSION ANKLE SPRAIN – in which the anterior talofibular ligament (ATFL) is commonly injured – you initially want to avoid placing the ankle in an inverted position, so it would be best to avoid this particular directional lunge.
In the posteromedial lunge, the ankle is moving into dorsiflexion and EVERSION. When rehabbing from an EVERSION ANKLE SPRAIN (although relatively uncommon) – in which the deltoid ligament is strained – you want to avoid placing the ankle in an everted position, so this directional lunge might not be the most appropriate.