My research!

Hello, my name is Sayuri Bhatia

Hello! I am a senior at Princeton High School interested in all things sports science, regeneration, biotechnology and healing! My research looks at the various factors that result in ankle sprains and injuries and attempts to determine the best method of rehabilitation to prevent their recurrence, specifically looking at the usage of ankle braces. I hope to share my results with athletic trainers across numerous high schools in NJ and decrease the recurrence of injury due to ineffective rehabilitation methods.


Ankle injuries are one of the most common injuries in athletes, and consist mainly of torn or bruised ankle ligaments due to the continual impact of running. They are often used in rehabilitation from sports injuries as they are believed to limit usage of an injured joint so it is not overly stressed upon return to play. Rehabilitation methods for ankle sprains is a highly contested topic as many professionals in the sports-science community have differing beliefs. Does too much support of ankle ligaments upon return to play protect overuse and injury? Or is it actually the opposite, where ligaments are protected and unused for such a long time period that they are more susceptible to recurring sprains? My research aims to find out, through the use of a survey. In this survey, participants who have had an ankle injury in the past are told to perform two proprioceptive exercises: single leg stance and single leg balance with eyes closed. They are also told to perform two strength exercises: single leg jumping and single leg squats. Also recorded is the method of rehabilitation (ankle brace, tape, etc.) and demographics such as sport played, gender, and more. Participants rank their pain after completion of the exercise on a scale of 1-10.

Current Research

So far, I have finished collecting my data and began data analysis. My survey was distributed and implemented at my own high school (Princeton HS) as well as several other high schools in New Jersey. So far, the data shows that ankle braces result in the lowest amount of pain and thus lowest chances of recurrence. My statistical analysis will consist of various methods including an ANOVA test for comparison of time since previous injury and age and a two T-test for gender analysis.

Upcoming presentations:

Mercer County Science Fair, Jersey Shore Junior Science Symposium, Northwest Biomechanics symposium