Exercising your feet regularly can not only improve the overall health of your feet but also reduce the risk of injury.

Before walking or doing some exercise, take a few minutes to march in the area as warm as possible. Then try some quick exercises below to stretch and strengthen the muscles in your feet. Then hit the road — you start slowly if you start exercising for a long time.

Go up

To strengthen your foot before attempting another exercise, try the following:

1. Sit in a chair with your feet down.

2. Lift your left leg so your foot is off the floor and use your big toe to make circles in the air, moving in a clockwise direction, for 15 to 20 rotations.

3. Go back and make another 15 to 20 circles, this time facing the opposite side of the clock.

4. Repeat with your right foot.

Bottom-of-foot stretch

Stretching the muscles under your feet and toes:

1. Stand with feet together.

2. Go back with your left leg so that your heel is raised and your toes press down. You should feel the muscles under your feet pulling slightly.

3. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.

4. Repeat with your right foot.

Top-of-foot stretch

Stretching the muscles over your feet and toes:

1. Stand with feet together.

2. Working with one foot at a time, lift your heel and bend your toes down, pressing your toes against the floor. You should feel the muscles up in your feet and the front of your ankle slightly stretch.

3. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.

4. Repeat with the other foot.


Calf and Achilles tendon stretch (runner’s stretch)

To stretch your Achilles tendon:

1. Stand at arm’s length from the wall, press your hands against it and keep your feet together.

2. Go back with your left leg, slightly bend your right knee and keep your left heel down. You should feel a stretch near your calf to your ankle. Hold for 20 to 30 seconds.

3. Repeat with your right leg.


Seated hamstring stretch

Tight muscles in the backs of your thighs can put stress on the calves and, in turn, the ankles and feet. To stretch the hamstrings:

1. Get a comfortable wheelchair, with your feet bent and your feet down.

2. Stretch your right leg straight in front of you, your right heel down and your toes facing the ceiling.

3. Go forward in worship, with your hands on your left thigh for support.

4. Repeat with your left leg.


Strengthening exercise for ankles

You can practice a simple exercise to increase ankle strength that mimics the movement of your foot when you press down on an accelerator or clutch in a car:

1. Sit in a chair with your feet down, facing forward.

2. Lift your left leg. Hold the ends of the exercise belt and place the center of the belt under the ball of your foot.

3. Slightly press on the exercise band, as if you were stepping on your car’s gas pedal and holding for a few seconds. You should feel a stretch in the upper part of your foot. Then release.

4. Repeat 10 to 15 times.

5. Repeat with your right leg.

Strengthening exercise for calves

To strengthen your calves:

1. Wearing sneakers or shoes, stand with both feet on the floor. Raise your heels, shift your weight from your toes. Then lower your heels.

2. Repeat 10 times. Pause. Do five sets of 10 repetitions daily.

After two weeks, if your feet are strong and not injured, you can increase the intensity by doing the same set of exercises but only one foot at a time. Place one foot gently behind your ankle. Hold the back of a chair or table to stabilize.


Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

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