7am-7pm M-F 510-547-1630
7am-7pm M-F 510-547-1630
Stiff ankles in the morning

Three conditions that can cause you to wake up with stiff ankles in the morning

Joint stiffness in the morning is a common occurrence and can affect us all over the body, including the ankles. While it is associated with the aging process, stiff ankles in the morning can also be related to a number of injuries as well. By learning more about potential causes, you can take a more active role with your treatment team as you seek relief. 

That’s why we’re sharing this helpful guide to three conditions that are likely to be associated with stiff ankles in the morning. We’re here to help, and if you have any questions or concerns as you read this, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our caring team. 

These injuries and conditions may be associated with stiff ankles in the morning

Everyone is different, but here are some of the more common diagnoses for patients who report stiff ankles in the morning: 

  1. Osteoarthritis — This age-related form of arthritis develops due to breakdown of the protective cartilage that helps cushion our joints and allow for smooth movement. Arthritis can develop in the ankles due to the large amount of weight and pressure the ankles absorb on a daily basis. Without cartilage to protect them, the ankle joints can easily become inflamed and stiff, particularly in the morning.
  2. Achilles tendinitis — This could be a more likely cause if the stiffness is more pronounced in one ankle than the other. While an inflamed Achilles tendon is more closely associated with ankle pain, it can also be a source of stiffness after a night of sleep. 
  3. Sprained ankle — Like tendinitis, an ankle sprain will also likely be accompanied by pain, but stiffness is another symptom of inflamed ankle ligaments and it may be more pronounced in the morning.

If you are diagnosed with any of these conditions as the source of your ankle stiffness in the morning, physical therapy can be a highly effective form of treatment. 

SOL Physical Therapy can help you improve your ankle mobility

Stiff ankles in the morning don’t have to set the course of your day. When you come to SOL Physical Therapy, our talented and experienced team can help you identify the causes and contributors of your ankle problems and develop a comprehensive treatment plan to help you decrease pain and increase mobility. We’ll also help you learn techniques and strategies to manage joint stiffness at any time of day, including the morning. 

To schedule your initial appointment with one of our representatives, contact us today. 

About the author

Sports + Orthopedic Leaders Physical Therapy & Performance Training serves the communities of Oakland, Alameda, Berkeley, Walnut Creek, Orinda, San Francisco and beyond. SOLPT’s award winning team of Physical Therapists, Performance Coaches and movement experts has helped thousands reach their rehabilitation and performance goals to move beyond pain. We're committed to helping anyone of any fitness level move effectively and more powerfully for a lifetime. We offer rehabilitation and performance services to all populations, with specialties in Sports Rehabilitation, Active Release Techniques, and Manual Therapy Techniques plus Personal and Small Group Training, Sport Clinics and Wellness Services.