Human foot is often taken for granted and like other parts of the body, it also needs more exercise because it is the part that bears the weight of the body. Foot exercise is likely the great way to keep your foot healthy and in great shape. Your feet also need to breathe because most of the time they are trapped in an ill-fitted shoes. When they are trapped inside the shoes for long hours, their muscles will become stiff which results to flat feet. It is the result if your foot’s surrounding muscles weaken, the arch will collapse and the whole foot touches the ground. They usually can be triggered by ill-fitted shoes or conditions such as arthritis and sudden weight changes due to pregnancy that can change the center of gravity of the body that leads to the weakening or falling of the arches.
Flat Feet Test
Easy test if you might have flat feet or fallen arches, follow these steps:
- Wet your feet.
- Find a flat surface where you can stand and imprint your footprints.
- Slowly step away and look at your prints. If complete imprints of the bottom of your feet are shown, then you have flat feet.
Foot Exercises and Treatment
Foot exercise and stretch is very important in dealing with foot pain. Simple stretching can reduce pain and increase the blood circulation in your foot. It is also beneficial for those who are suffering from ball and heel pain. Foot arch pain is also known as arch strain; it refers to the burning sensation or a swelling at the arch of the foot. There are factors that can cause arch pain. An injury to the foot is one factor and another one is sudden weight change. A flat foot is another factor and the pain is extreme in the morning after a prolonged rest or sleep. These foot problems can be easily treated. One should avoid using high-heel shoes; instead choose foot wears that has lower heels, soft leather shoes and shoes that fit well in your feet.
To prevent foot problems, perform some foot exercises to stretch and release muscle tensions. Simple five-step foot exercise routine:
- Stand, lift and lower ten toes. Repeat 12 times.
- Lift 10 toes and spread them apart. Repeat 12 times.
- Lift right heel off the floor. Put the ball of your feet on the floor and roll from one side to the other. Repeat 12 times.
- Rock and roll – Keep your feet flat on the floor rock them outwards and then inwards to stand in the insides of the foot. Repeat 12 times. This movement will increase flexibility and strengthen the ankle.
- Foot fold – Stand with both feet on the floor, lift right heel and put it down. Repeat 12 times for each foot. Crunching around the ankle is normal. This movement stretches the arch of the foot and strengthens the midfoot.
- Smart toes – Stand with both feet flat on the ground. Stretch toes on the ground and slowly pull them towards you. Repeat 12 times. This movement will increase the flexibility of the arch of the foot.
- Toe challenge – Stand with both feet on the floor. Lift ten toes off the ground, tap big toes on the ground while others stay lifted and do the same with the others. This movement improves coordination, toe flexibility and muscle strength.
“Happy feet” can be achieved by performing regular foot exercises and stretching and wearing well-fitted shoes. The stronger your feet are, the faster and more convenient your legs can move.