This blog provides encouragement to people who are beginning training, returning to training, going through physical therapy, or recovering from injury. I'm not selling anything here, I just like giving, and getting, encouragement!

Learning to walk again - dealing with slopes

As someone who is recovering from ankle injury, I have now discovered my new arch-enemy - slopes. That is, any area where the ground is angling up or down. And I am not talking about a very steep slope, like along the edge of a ravine, I am talking about angles as little as 8 degrees. And these hazards are everywhere for people like me.

Most of them look something like this

This is a typical 7 to 8 degree slope that you will find on just about any sidewalk, and also in front of doors in buildings. They can be very difficult for people like me to as we are trying to keep our balance while our ankles are being asked to brace at 8 degrees of angle. Flat ground is, of course, 0 degrees, so 8 is actually quite a lot. Where possible, I step around them, on flat ground, and step off of the curb onto flat ground, but many times this is impossible because there may be plants or other obstacles in the way. In fact, many times the slope involves a compound slope, as in the photo above. In addition to sloping down 8 degrees, it also slopes sideways a few degrees.

There is really no getting around this. Slopes like this are designed for wheelchairs, and for people with healthier ankles than me. So, I have two choices - and I have decided to work on overcoming slopes.

Take that, slopes!
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