- 18 September 2012
These are two good ways to improve your balance and counteract the narrowing effect shoes can have on the feet.
Massage the soles of your feet: With a stick, a tennis ball or a foot roller, thoroughly massage the heel, arch, sides and ball of the foot, the base of all the toes and the toes themselves. Avoid pressing too hard (painful) or too little (just touching).
Stretch between the toes: Place a toe separator between your toes and leave it for one to five minutes. Great for bunions.
These are three good ways to counteract the muscle-shortening effect of high heels and supination. Keep the feet parallel, heels in line with the middle toes. Be precise!
1. Step forward with one foot, feet parallel. Bend the front knee slightly and straighten the back leg. Press the centre of the back heel down to the floor while pressing the hips forward. Hold for one minute, then repeat with the other leg.
2. Take a small step forward, then bend both knees and press the centre of the back heel down to the floor. Lower your bottom towards your back heel as far as you comfortably can. Hold for one minute, then repeat with the other leg.
Toe stretches: Tuck your toes under, keeping your feet parallel. Progressively sit back on your heels. Hold for one minute.
These are three good ways to counteract the stiffening effect shoes and boots can have on the ankles.
Point and flex: Hinging at the ankle, draw the heel in and point the toes. Draw the heel out and flex the toes. Do ten repetitions.
Ankle circles: Rotate the ankle drawing a big circle with the toes. Ten circles clockwise and ten anti-clockwise.
Front of the ankle stretch: Sit back on your feet, feet parallel and toes pointed back. Keep the heels towards each other. If your ankles are stiff, place a cushion or folded towel under them. Hold for one minute.