Anyone have exercise suggestions while recovering from pilon fracture?

While I was in a cast and nonweightbearing I enrolled in a gym that was very similar to a CrossFit gym (no exercise machines just free weights and open floor space to do bodyweight exercises and flexibility work). Those folks put me through a regimen of core work, upper body work & mobility work,  that not only made me feel really good and got the blood pumping but also gave me something uplifting to do.

Since that time, I relocated and, rather than find a new gym, I thought I would get back into bicycle riding and doing other exercise at home.  Of course that’s because I assumed I was almost recovered and ready to get back to my normal life.  Low and behold three months has gone by that I have not done any workouts. My Pilon fracture recovery is taking its sweet time and I am getting flabby and it’s time to start looking for ways to keep the rest of my body fit while my ankle continues to find itself a role in cohabitating with my lifestyle 🙂


i’m putting this out there to everybody for ideas on things to stay fit without abusing the ankle. I will round up a bunch of the workouts that I did before and share them because they felt good and they didn’t require a lot of equipment and they were very stable and safe for the week ankle. Most of them were nonweightbearing.

Ankle Fusion – A Good Looking Option After Pilon Fracture

I am becoming more and more excited for the day I can get this ankle fused. My pilon fracture destroyed so much cartilage, as well as the joint surfaces were so damaged, that the healing of the tibial plafond is not allowing the ankle to re-form into any sort of useful joint.  I think folks with ankle fusion have about as much ankle mobility as I do now anyway, so why not eliminate the pain?

Videos like these make me optimistic:

Youtube on ankle fusion after motorcycle accident

Man walking barefoot with fused ankle

Youtube video animation of how ankle arthritis and fusion works

Video of a person’s 1 year post-fusion walking demonstration

Ankle replacement not an option, Fusion needs to wait too

Pilon fracture recovery is all about re-setting my expectations, and remaining hopeful.

I saw Dr Roger Mann and Dr. Nicolas Gay and they both say there is no way an ankle replacement will hold, the bone is only “a 5 out of 10” in quality and could take 1-2 years to “turn over” which means the tibial plafond was fractured in so many directions that the bone is now disorganized and spongy and will need significant time to get itself sorted out and turn to mature hard bone. At that time I can have it fused.

In the meantime I need to baby the ankle joint, keep pain under control however I can, and wear an Arizona AFO brace. I got fitted for the brace on Friday.

The Doc said I may be able to have cortisone shots if my pain gets too bad. But the recommended limit is 3 shots a year, and the shots last about a month. I will wait. For now my boots, advil, and turmeric/ginger/rosemary cocktail seems to get me by.