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2019 Camino Guides

Sprained ankle on day 1- what to do?

becface

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (Sept 2018)
#1
I’m devastated to say that I hurt myself on day one and had to pause my Camino.

It’s been a week so far and to there is little improvement. Mainly due to the fact that spain doesn’t hire crutches, so Im not healing fast.

Im currently in Bilbao, and will go to Santander today to continue resting.

My question is; is there any shorter and easier alternatives for a one week Camino in the first weeks of October? Any recommendations? I have to pick up my pay mochilla from Corerros in Santiago by the 12th October.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#2
Last edited:
Camino(s) past & future
2035 km of the way to Saint James in Galicia done.
#3
It’s been a week so far and to there is little improvement. Mainly due to the fact that spain doesn’t hire crutches, so Im not healing fast.
I don't quite understand this comment. If you can't hire crutches or get them for free as a visitor to Spain you can surely buy them? You can get them from about 20 EUR a piece in Bilbao or Santander. Get better soon!
 

Nurah

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
(2016) Frances, (2018)Portuguese
#4
Just be careful! I sprained my ankle in Madrid before beginning my 1st Camino, rested a couple days, then limped along for 14 wonderful days!
(very little pain, but sone swelling)
When I returned home, I did a simple pivot and felt something snap. Ended up with a "Jones fracture" (break along outside metatarsal midfoot) and had to wear a boot for 2 months! Not fun!
 

Iriebabel

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April (2018)
Camino Del Norte for April (2019) possible Primitivo
#5
@becface sorry to hear about your injury. Unfortunately sometimes it can be weeks before a sprain can feel completely better. Give it a few days, Rest,Ice and elevate to reduce the swelling. If you try too much too soon you can cause permanent damage. To assist you can ask medical personnel to show you how to use kinesiology tape to properly support the injury. If you dont have access to crutches trekking pole can help take some pressure off. If you must walk. Then take it slow and do shorter distances, Supplementing with the bus/taxi when possible. Definately send your pack with transport if you can. If your foot is broken it would be very difficult to walk if at all So better to err on the side of caution and give it a couple days of rest before attempting to start again. Use that time to research a shorter route as @VNwalking suggested. Good Luck and Buen Camino !
 
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP-Finisterre X 2, El Norte incompleto
#6
I don't quite understand this comment. If you can't hire crutches or get them for free as a visitor to Spain you can surely buy them? You can get them from about 20 EUR a piece in Bilbao or Santander. Get better soon!
Yes, it seems that most farmacias sell crutches.
 
Camino(s) past & future
CF: (2001, 2002, 2004, 2014). Hospitalera: 2002, Ponferrada. 2004, Rabanal del Camino.
#7
You can finish. Rest your ankle. Tape your ankle. If you have to bus from point to point for a time that is okay. You'll heal after a bit. Apply RICE; Rest, Ice, Compress, Elevate for a bit.

On winter early spring camino I sprained ankle on day four on CF. I taped my ankle everyday and walked slowly, or took bus from point to point. After a few weeks, I was able to continue at my normal pace. However, I kept that ankle taped all the way to Fisterra.

Don't give up.

Buen camino.
 
#8
Oh, bad luck, @becface!
If you haven't already done so, consider getting a medical assessment to see if you have done more than simply spraining the ankle.
Here's a video from a few PTs on how you can begin to assess this for yourself:
Then take care of treatment and rehab...:
http://www.aofas.org/footcaremd/how-to/foot-injury/Pages/How to Care for a Sprained Ankle.aspx

If it is possible to be walking distances, the Ingles is a lovely 5 or 6 day camino...
An assessment would indeed be recommended, especially if no improvement is noted after a week (assuming you are at least following the RICE rule).

But, I would not self diagnose! Get yourself to a physiotherapist (P.T.) or health center (Centro de Salud) to have your ankle checked out. There are different degrees of sprain and depending on the severity other advice will be given.

p.s. I am a physiotherapist
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances, 2015
#9
Crutches may be a better deal for you but I'll add here a short story of a wheelchair "rental."

Peg had to stay off her feet for a few days in Astorga but there was just too much sightseeing to do so I asked at the tourist bureau if there was a place I could rental a wheelchair. No; of course not. It's Spain. If you need one you're given one. The nice folks at the tourist bureau didn't give up. They called the Red Cross and we got a free loaner for a few days but with a request for a donation. No problem; we give money and blood at home anyway. So Peg got to see the town at the extra cost to her of having to put up with my purposely terrifying pushing.
 

twh

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPdP May/June, 2018
#10
I'm lucky, I don't have any experience with foot, ankle or knee injuries but I purposely brought boots to give me an edge against ankle injuries on my camino.

Since I have never been treated for these injuries I have been unaware of the "miracles" that physio therapists can make happen. I know of two people on my camino that were injured with no hope to continue. One got medical treatment...massage, therapy...whatever they do?? plus a few days rest...and she was able to continue and complete her CF in comfort. The other I lost track of, she needed to buy a knee brace and needed to get to a larger town...Logrono, to find an XXL size.

It's possible, you might get "fixed" with the right treatments but it might take a few Doctors or therapists to find the miracle maker. Maybe someone reading this knows of an outstanding therapist you can taxi/bus/train to for treatment. Wishing you Good luck finding treatment and finishing your Camino.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Francés ('14/'15)
St Olav/Francés ('16)
Baztanés/Francés ('17)
Ingles ('18)
#11
But, I would not self diagnose! Get yourself to a physiotherapist (P.T.) or health center (Centro de Salud) to have your ankle checked out.
Absolutely. That video has info on the 'red flags' that might indicate a more serious injury, but if it doesn't improve with several days of rest, go see someone anyway.
 
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP-Finisterre X 2, El Norte incompleto
#12

KinkyOne

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
I'am not perfect, but I'm always myself!!!
#13
An assessment would indeed be recommended, especially if no improvement is noted after a week (assuming you are at least following the RICE rule).

But, I would not self diagnose! Get yourself to a physiotherapist (P.T.) or health center (Centro de Salud) to have your ankle checked out. There are different degrees of sprain and depending on the severity other advice will be given.

p.s. I am a physiotherapist
I think I wrote about my first attempt on CF about a dozen times :)
But I'll do it again.

In short. Two weeks prior to my first Camino in 2009 I sprained my ankle while jogging (It's true that I had this many times before while playing basketball). I didn't go to a doctor because I knew what it was. And I had a lot of work so I was limping around for those two weeks. Friend of mine told me to lay down and stay still but noooo, I was so clever :eek:
Well the tickets were already bought and me and my mom came to SJPdP. But walked only to Logrono. Me in tears and all swollen because of Ibuprofeno.
Then I went to ER and they made a scan. The doctor simply told me that I have already torned tendons and that I should end my Camino otherwise I won't be able to walk properly again ever but the Camino will still be there. I went home in tears.

BUT I RETURNED!!! MANY TIMES!

Two years ago my a little bit submissive female friend took CF as well and was dragged along the too long stages by her friend. By Burgos she developed so bad injury to her ankle that even two years later she can't walk like she was. I hopped from Via de Bayona to CF to save her (but I went back then and she was a tourist).

It's not a joke. End it and go home. If you have fixed return flight then enjoy Spain. Plenty more to see then Camino!!!
 
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twh

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances from SJPdP May/June, 2018
#14
The boots might give you a false sense of security as far as protecting your ankles. Read @davebugg comments on response #18 in this thread: https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/rigid-soles-on-boots.57644/#post-656125
Yes, thank you Trecile for the reference to Dave (who I consider the Master in all things about shoes) he makes good arguments that cannot be refuted so it is important to compare the exact specs of the boots or trail runners you are planning to purchase in those critical areas of height and width for stability and weight for fatigue.

I felt more protected and stable in my hiking boots compared to my hiking shoes. It might be delusional but I feel like I have an extra fraction of a second to recover with high top boots on than with shoes. The higher boots don’t prevent a sprain or twist but it feels like they give me an extra millisecond of ankle support to lift and replant before a injury or greater injury occur. But I will concede if in fact science has proved otherwise.

I brought on my trip Salomon boots and trail runners, Quest 4D3 boots & XAPro3D trail runners. REI weights for the pair of boots are 2lbs 13oz, the pair of shoes 1lb 11oz. My bathroom scale does't change when I pick up or set down a boot or shoe and that's the most accurate weighing device I have in the house.

I stand 1/8” taller in the boots. I can’t feel the difference in height or stability but I can’t argue with physics. My center of gravity is higher but I’m not sure how significant this difference is.

The boots have a wider sole in the heel section by 1/8”
The boots have a wider sole in the ball of foot section by 3/8”
I can’t feel the difference in stability with wider front and rear sole but I can’t argue with physics. My platform is wider and thus more stable but I’m not sure how significant this difference is.

For stability, by Dave’s criteria, my specific boots lose a measure to my specific runners due to height but they gain a measure due to width. It feels like a wash to me but perhaps it’s significant if the physics geeks want to try to calculate it.

Weight and Fatigue – one very light boot weighs 9oz more than one feather light shoe which is .0024 of my combined body and pack weight of 235lbs. Is 9oz significant from a fatigue perspective? For the ultra light community, it’s a resounding YES! I’m still in the ultra heavy community so I didn’t notice the extra weight of the boots while wearing them or carrying them. Someday I will but I hope it's many years from now.
 
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#15
I’m devastated to say that I hurt myself on day one and had to pause my Camino.

It’s been a week so far and to there is little improvement. Mainly due to the fact that spain doesn’t hire crutches, so Im not healing fast.

Im currently in Bilbao, and will go to Santander today to continue resting.

My question is; is there any shorter and easier alternatives for a one week Camino in the first weeks of October? Any recommendations? I have to pick up my pay mochilla from Corerros in Santiago by the 12th October.
Lugo to santiago just over 100 km
 

Stivandrer

Perambulating & Curious. Rep stravaiging offender
Camino(s) past & future
I´ve got Camino plans until 2042,
- or till I fall flat on my face, whichever comes first !!
#16
Sorry to hear:

1 Get a diagnosis, bet you already had that done ...
2 get taped up - by a physiotherapist..
3 use K- tape, let him/her advice you how to self tape . It is possible to use two layers of Ktape or an additional layer of ordinary, elastic bandage on top of Ktape..
4 rest and apply slight motion : M.E.A.T
("MEAT (movement, exercise, analgesics and treatment) protocol proposed for treating ligaments and tendons. ) contra R.I.C.E.
5 buy two extra rolls and see how far this will get you in your own tempo.

I have walked and alleviated minor tendinitis an such on myself by walking on, and seen others walk with K-tape with good results...
I use poles...

Take Care & Good Luck
 

Sarah Fisher

Master Traveler, Novice Walker
Camino(s) past & future
September 2018 - Camino Frances
#17
I ended my camino just days ago in Pamplona. Didn't make it far. But...I know I'll finish it someday. For now, I took a bus to Barcelona as all of Spain is new to me and moved up my flight back. I'm happy that I started in St. Jean for the views and experience but it certainly did a number on me and I'll be starting in Pamplona next time.
 
#18
I’m devastated to say that I hurt myself on day one and had to pause my Camino.

It’s been a week so far and to there is little improvement. Mainly due to the fact that spain doesn’t hire crutches, so Im not healing fast.

Im currently in Bilbao, and will go to Santander today to continue resting.

My question is; is there any shorter and easier alternatives for a one week Camino in the first weeks of October? Any recommendations? I have to pick up my pay mochilla from Corerros in Santiago by the 12th October.
I see that our Resident EMT has not visited this thread so far. Watch for Davebugg or PM him for specific treatment on the road.

If I may offer some advice, as it has been 10 days, I believe that alternating hot / cold every half hour and resting for no more than 2 hours before restarting hot / cold rotation, will speed up recovery.

Next, as you are on the Norte, an option would be to check to see where to start, about 25 or more km East of A Coruna. Starting there, walking to A Coruna and then the 75 km to SdC, will make 100 km and qualified for the Compostela.

Seek out davebugg to see if he can help that ankle back into a more usable condition.

Buen Camino!!!
 

Iriebabel

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April (2018)
Camino Del Norte for April (2019) possible Primitivo
#19
I see that our Resident EMT has not visited this thread so far. Watch for Davebugg or PM him for specific treatment on the road.

If I may offer some advice, as it has been 10 days, I believe that alternating hot / cold every half hour and resting for no more than 2 hours before restarting hot / cold rotation, will speed up recovery.

Next, as you are on the Norte, an option would be to check to see where to start, about 25 or more km East of A Coruna. Starting there, walking to A Coruna and then the 75 km to SdC, will make 100 km and qualified for the Compostela.

Seek out davebugg to see if he can help that ankle back into a more usable condition.

Buen Camino!!!
FYI DaveBugg left for his camino today ...so I believe he currently in transit. https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/airport.58035/post-663156
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Santiago de Compostela
#20
Oh that is bad luck. If it was broken you would know. Major swelling, pain and bruising. Whilst sprains can be painful, it’s not as bad as breaks. RICE Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation is the key. I know it’s painful but getting that joint into a bucket of ice water is the absolute best to get that swelling down and heal. My wife sprained her ankle in Paris two days before we began the Camino. She constantly applied Voltaten Forte, readily avail in European chemists, though, once we got to Burgos, a fair way in, we took five days out. She had had enough, and finished the Camino after that rest. We lost our Camino family as they moved on, but we finished, and we are forever grateful for our Camino
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#21
I ended my camino just days ago in Pamplona. Didn't make it far. But...I know I'll finish it someday. For now, I took a bus to Barcelona as all of Spain is new to me and moved up my flight back. I'm happy that I started in St. Jean for the views and experience but it certainly did a number on me and I'll be starting in Pamplona next time.
Sarah, Congratulations for making it to Pamplona. The first section is not an easy one! Safe journey home!
 

Marbe2

Active member
Camino(s) past & future
2015 SJPD to Burgos
2017 Leon to Santiago
Pamplona to Santiago Mar. 2018
Burgos - SCDC (Oct 18)
#22
I see that our Resident EMT has not visited this thread so far. Watch for Davebugg or PM him for specific treatment on the road.

If I may offer some advice, as it has been 10 days, I believe that alternating hot / cold every half hour and resting for no more than 2 hours before restarting hot / cold rotation, will speed up recovery.

Next, as you are on the Norte, an option would be to check to see where to start, about 25 or more km East of A Coruna. Starting there, walking to A Coruna and then the 75 km to SdC, will make 100 km and qualified for the Compostela.

Seek out davebugg to see if he can help that ankle back into a more usable condition.

Buen Camino!!!
FYI DaveBugg left for his camino today ...so I believe he currently in transit. https://www.caminodesantiago.me/community/threads/airport.58035/post-663156
I believe Dave said he would not be posting on his Camino? If I am wrong, please correct me;)! I am hoping we hear about his progress on his Camino soon:)
 

Iriebabel

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances April (2018)
Camino Del Norte for April (2019) possible Primitivo
#23
I believe Dave said he would not be posting on his Camino? If I am wrong, please correct me;)! I am hoping we hear about his progress on his Camino soon:)
I think you are correct:) I vaguely remember the same although my memory never cooperateso_O
 

peb

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
C. Ingles March 2018
#24
On the answer to the question, of are there easier one week caminos to walk in the first week of October, hoping that your ankle becomes better, look at the Ingles from Ferrol to Santiago.

120km from start to finish, any time from 4 days to 8 days, depending on how far you want to walk all day, generally quiet so albergues or pensions are not full, and a good walk by the coast for the first few days. You walk over 100km so you obtain a compostela, and you walk a whole Camino, which gives you a sense of achievement, after your bad luck. The terrain is mostly countryside and not mountainous, although about 40% is on asphalt. If you can do the whole of a short Camino, this may make your trip a little more positive and set you up for another attempt on a longer Camino, hopefully at a future time.

Air Nostrum (a franchise of Iberia) flies from Bilbao to Santiago up to 3 times a day, and from Santiago, it is bus or train to Ferrol.
 

Anamya

Keeping it simple
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2015)
Camino Portugues (2017)
Lebaniego (Planning)
#25
Another option is to keep advancing by bus on the Norte and change to Lugo, then walk to Santiago via the Primitivo. 5-6 days you will get there, with a traquil pace :)

Wishing you a speedy recovery!
 

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