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Remember to Stretch!

Add stretching to your exercise regimen of cardio/”high intensity interval training” (“HIIT”) and weight training. Your muscles start to shorten as you age and you need to actively counteract it. Two instances that add to the shortening is a sedentary work environment and using heeled shoes.

So what can you do about this? Here are 2 easy suggestions for the lower extremity:

  • “Wall push-ups”- by doing this exercise regularly, you will lengthen your Achilles tendon, which in turn will oppose flattening forces on your feet. Stand an “arm’s length” from the wall with your feet in line with each other. Next, bend your front knee and bring yourself close to the wall making sure to keep your back foot FLAT on the ground. Hold this pose for 18-20 seconds and then switch your feet placement and repeat. Do each side 3-4 times and you are good to go.

  • “Arch stretch”- an easy way to stretch your arch (“plantar fascia”) and reduce your chances of heel spur syndrome/plantar fasciitis is to roll a tennis ball/water bottle under your foot between your heel and the ball (where the toes meet the foot) for a few minutes in the evening. Make sure to do this on both feet. If your arch or heel are painful then apply ice afterwards for 10 minutes, remove it for 10 minutes and then re-apply it for 10 more minutes (enough to make it through a 30 minute TV show).

If you really want to do the right thing, try to make use of an orthotic (custom “arch-support”) the next day to maintain your stretching gains and reduce your chances of having foot and ankle problems. That can be accomplished by visiting a biomechanically-inclined podiatrist.

Climb aboard the “Wellness Wagon” by doing regular stretching and remembering to #StartWithYourFeet.

Walk strong…with orthotics,

Doc Rick , DPM

#StartWithYourFeet | Holistic Podiatrist | Hollywood Florida

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