When’s the last time you exercised your feet?
Sometimes when I start talking about feet exercises or showing them to clients I gets some crazy looks. I can just imagine the dialog going on in my clients head……
“I came here to do Pilates, you know…strengthen my core and tone my body so I can feel strong and energized in my life. I can’t believe I’m paying for a Pilates session and we are doing “foot exercises”. I’m mean really.. my feet are fine and how in the world is exercising my feet going to help me get a strong core, keep my back pain at bay and look good in my favorite jeans? I’m not really breaking a sweat working my feet…how could this be good for me? Aren’t there more important things we should be doing?”
I get where clients are coming from. If you’ve never thought about or been educated on the importance of your feet/ankles in relationship to how the rest of your body moves, then foot exercises probably seem ridiculous! But I can tell you from someone who specializes in movement, it is SO important to take care of your feet!! And this doesn’t just mean taking care of them when they are hurting or are causing you pain, but taking care of them so they don’t ever cause you pain! And just in case you are wondering….paying attention to your feet CAN totally help you find proper alignment in your body, prevent injuries, strengthen the entire body more efficiently and can even help you lessen or get rid of back pain!
The wonderful thing about taking care of your feet is that it is truly not difficult and does not take a lot of time to do it. But the little time and effort you put into your feet now can save you years of misery later in life!
Want to start learning more? Here’s some basic foot facts that you might find interesting!!
- The foot and ankle contain: 26 bones (One-quarter of the bones in the human body are in the feet.); 33 joints; more than 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments (Tendons are fibrous tissues that connect muscles to bones and ligaments are fibrous tissues that connect bones to other bones.)
- During an average day of walking, the total forces on your feet can total hundreds of tons, equivalent to an average of a fully loaded cement truck.
- 75% of Americans will experience foot problems at one time or another in their lives. ( WOW– thats 3 out of every 4 people!!)
- Women have about four times as many foot problems as men. High heels are partly to blame.
- It’s rare that two feet are exactly the same; one of them is often larger than the other.
- Over 2 million Americans seek treatment for plantar fasciitis (heel pain) each year.
- Foot disorders in the elderly are extremely common and are the cause of much pain and disability, and consequent loss of mobility and independence.
- 1/4 of all the bones in the human body are down in your feet. When these bones are out of alignment, so is the rest of the body.
- When walking, each time your heel lifts off the ground it forces the toes to carry one half of your body weight. ( Who knew your toes were so strong??)
- Your feet mirror your general health. Conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, nerve and circulatory disorders can show their initial symptoms in the feet — so foot ailments can be your first sign of more serious medical problems.