Healthy Happy Feet: Improving Movement Quality and Posture
Did you know that your feet are not just the foundation for your body, but they also play a vital role in influencing movement and posture? With 26 bones, 33 joints, 19 muscles, and 107 ligaments, our feet are truly amazing structures. In this blog post, we will explore how increasing awareness at the foot, actively working the muscles, and employing active recovery strategies can improve your movement quality and overall posture. Get ready for happy, healthy feet!
Increasing Awareness at the Foot
To start, let’s focus on awareness and proper alignment. Stand tall with your heels under your hips and your ribcage stacked over your pelvis. Lift your toes up and spread them apart as far as possible, then place them back on the ground. Now, actively press your big toe down into the ground. Can you feel the contraction? This exercise not only strengthens the muscles in your feet but also influences movement up the chain, from your knees to your hips and pelvis. You may even feel the engagement in your inner thigh or pelvic floor. Take a moment to connect with your feet and notice the difference it makes.
Active Muscle Work
Building on awareness, let’s move on to actively working the muscles in your feet. For this exercise, you’ll need a dishtowel and a hard surface floor (tile or wood). Lay the towel out on the ground in front of you and stand with your toes and the ball of your foot on the towel, while keeping the rest of your foot on the floor. Once again, lift your toes, spread them apart, and use them to grab hold of the towel. Ball up the towel under your foot by using the strength of your toes. Repeat this motion until you have no towel left in front of you. This exercise helps strengthen the muscles in your feet and improve their functionality.
After working your muscles, it’s important to give your feet some much-needed rest and recovery. For this, you’ll need a tennis ball. Place the sole of your foot on the ball and push downward as you move your foot forward and back. Imagine your toes and foot melting over the ball. Repeat this motion 5-10 times per foot. This simple yet effective exercise helps relieve tension, promotes blood flow, and enhances flexibility in your feet.
Your feet play a significant role in your overall health and well-being. By increasing awareness, actively working the muscles, and incorporating active recovery strategies, you can improve movement quality, posture, and ultimately enhance your overall fitness journey. Remember, your feet are the foundation for your every move, so take care of them. Your feet will thank you! Start implementing these exercises today and enjoy the benefits of healthy, happy feet.