Are you putting your best foot forward? Healthy feet are vital for mobility, balance, and independence. And yet, with the exception of the occasional pedicure, many of us forget to take care of our feet.
Whether you are in the habit of running in worn-out sneakers, wearing snug stilettos, or skipping over sole-soothing stretches, wear and tear will catch up with your feet. Preventative, foot-focused fitness is the best way to avoid the debilitating aches and pains associated with weak feet.
For the following exercises, you will need a tennis ball and a hand towel.
The Achilles tendon runs along the back of the ankle, bridging the calf and the heel bone. This exercise helps to keep the tendon limber and reduce the risk of tension-related injury.
Plantar fascia is the connective tissue found between your heel and toes. Plantar fasciitis can develop when this tissue becomes inflamed from overuse, flat-footedness, a high arch, or gait compensation. This exercise can help alleviate any arch-related discomfort.
This movement creates contractions in the foot to help strengthen the surrounding muscle fibers.
Good for the sole
If you cram your feet into circulation-constricting heels or other ill-fitting shoes, you've likely experienced painful foot cramps. This stretch is designed to relieve any tension that builds at the base of the foot, to prevent uncomfortable muscle spasms.
Don't let a lack of foot care leave you defeated.