Fitness for your Feet

We all want fit feet, healthy feet. It makes our life a lot easier. And if you don’t exercise your feet on a regular basis, they will be less resistant to injury and won’t be as strong and flexible as they should be for every day activity.

Whenever it’s safe, we recommend going barefoot. It’s a natural workout for feet, especially if you walk on sand. The fine grains also help rough skin and calluses. In addition to barefoot strolls, you should exercise your feet – so you will have fit feet and therefore happy feet! All of the following exercises can be done sitting down except the Achilles-Tendon stretch.

1. Toe stretches
Raise your heels, keeping just balls of feet and toes on the floor, and hold five seconds, then curl your toes under, holding five seconds. Repeat ten times.

2. Toe Squeezes
Place small corks between your toes. Squeeze and hold for five seconds. Release. Do this 10 times.

3. Toe Pulls
Put a thick rubber band around all five toes and spread them. Hold five seconds. Relax. Repeat 10 times. The resistance provided by the rubber band will help strengthen the toes. Fit feet will follow.

4. Big-Toe Pulls
Starting with feet slightly apart, place a thick rubber band around both big toes and pull the toes in opposite directions, toward the smaller toes on the same foot. Hold for five seconds. Relax. Repeat 10 times.

5. Towel Curls
Place a small towel on the floor and use your toes to curl it towards you. To increase the resistance, put a weight on the end of the towel. Relax. Repeat 5 times with each foot.

6. Marble Pickup
Place 20 marbles on the floor. Using your toes, pick up one marble at a time and put in a small bowl. Pick up all 20 marbles with your feet. Then repeat on the other foot. In addition to helping the toes, this will also help relieve pain in the ball of the foot caused by high arches or wearing too-tight shoes.

7. Golf-Ball Rolls
To massage your feet and relieve arch strain or foot cramps, roll a golf ball under the ball of your foot for two minutes. Do this with both feet – fit feet will follow.

8. Alphabet Foot Rolls
To stretch, strengthen and increase flexibility in your ankles and feet, sit with legs crossed at knees and, using the foot of the crossed leg, “draw” each letter of the alphabet with the other foot.

If you do all of these exercises a couple times a week, your feet will be very thankful, and you will have fit feet in no time!

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