We’ve all heard of the importance of stretching before running or exercising. While most people are pretty good at remembering this, they often forget to stretch their feet. They will stretch their arms, shoulders, quads, calves, and hamstrings, but forget the feet — the essential part of the body that contains more than 100 combined muscles, tendons, and ligaments. This is quite the oversight, and in today’s blog, we here at NEWZILL would like to share with you some basic stretches and ways to help keep your feet in optimal condition.
The Importance of Feet
While the above heading may seem self-evident, it’s something that is worth repeating. The feet are the base of your support. They’re the first point of connection between your body and the ground, and when you run or exercise, your feet bear the brunt of the pressure and impact of running — but don’t worry, they’re made for it. However, this doesn’t mean you can neglect them. Doing so can lead to unnecessary foot pain and other problems. For example, if foot pain reduces your range of motion, the impact could radiate throughout your body, causing issues like leg and lower back pain.
Below are some simple ways to stretch your feet and toes:
Flex Backwards and Forwards
First on the list is one of the simplest and most convenient stretches. This can be done while sitting down or even on a long flight. This stretch works by simply extending the leg and then flexing your foot all the way back, like you are trying to point them at your chest, and then reversing it by pointing your toes away from you as far as you can. For an even deeper stretch, try incorporating a resistance band.
Flex Using a Step
For this next stretch, all you need is a step. Simply place the front third of both feet on a step, letting your heels hang off the edge. Find a comfortable balance and hold this pose for 10 to 15 seconds, and then lift up on the balls of your feet and hold this pose for an equal amount of time.
Flex Using a Tennis Ball
If you have ever gotten or given a massage using a tennis ball, you are already familiar with the basic principles of this technique. However, unlike a tennis ball massage on, say, the back, using a tennis ball to stretch your foot doesn’t require anyone else. Simply place a tennis ball on the ground and use one foot to stand on the ball while the other foot lies flat on the ground, providing balance. Roll the ball under your foot, applying as much pressure as you feel necessary, and then repeat the process with the other foot.
Toes are, of course, an integral part of a proper functioning foot and, therefore, shouldn’t be excluded from your stretching routine. There are a number of ways to stretch the toes. Moving your toes to their full range of motion in every direction and stretching them apart are both excellent examples of how to give them a nice, little stretch. Another great way to stretch your toes is to place your heel on the floor and your toes against a wall and gently apply pressure.
The Importance of Socks
As pioneers in the world of compression and orthopedic socks, we would be remiss in our duties to not talk about the impact of socks on your foot health. This is especially true if you are participating in physical activities or have had foot problems in the past. While we encourage you to read through the full description of our socks, here are some of the highlights of our orthopedic and athletic compression socks:
- Graduated Compression — our orthopedic socks feature true graduated compression that promotes blood flow. This stimulated blood flow improves oxygen delivery to muscles, which in turn helps to prevent cramping and swelling, remove lactic acid buildup, and improve recovery time.
- Moisture Wicking — our compression socks are made out of a cutting-edge, moisture-wicking material that boosts breathability, reliable temperature control, and the prevention of odor formation.
- Optimal Support — the advanced design of our compression socks supports critical muscles and tendons, essentially functioning as a layer of muscle. This can not only help relieve pain, but it can also provide optimal support. From the reinforced heel that helps to reduce shock to the enhanced arch support that helps prevent and relieve plantar fasciitis pain, our athletic compression socks can support you every step of the way.
Be sure to check out our extensive collection of orthopedic socks and compression wear. From fun rainbow compression socks to simple 24-Seven white compression socks, we are sure to have something to meet your performance and style needs. At NEWZILL, we take tremendous pride in offering compression socks that provide unrivaled quality, support, style, and performance.