Tip: Half-Kneeling Dorsiflexion Range of Motion Screen

Got an ugly squat? It could be your ankle mobility. Here's how to test it.

Before you start treating your ankle mobility limitations, first figure out your ankle dorsiflexion range of motion to establish a baseline level of mobility. Reminder: the "dorsum" is the top of your foot, so dorsiflexion is the bending of your foot toward your leg, and the position it would move into as you squat. This assessment is your starting point.

  • Do this without shoes.
  • Get in a half-kneeling position so that your front leg can be screened.
    While keeping your foot flat on the ground (don't let your heal come up), drive your front knee forward as far as you can out over your toes.
  • Place your fist in front and perpendicular to your longest toe to establish a range of motion metric.
  • If your kneecap passes your fist width out in front of your toes, this is a sign of a functionally normal range of motion. You have passed.
  • If your kneecap does not pass your fist width, this will establish a baseline starting point, which means your ankles failed this screen. A failed screen means you'll need some ankle mobility drills.