Why Giving Your Feet Some TLC Is So Good For Your Health
Growing up on Long Island, New York, with a father who equally shares my love for the ocean, we spent many summer days at the beach.
We often spent time out at Cedar Beach in Mount Sinai which had no sand at all. I lie, there was sand, but you had to swim to the deep water to enjoy it. The beach itself was covered in rocks. Making that long trek of about 8 feet from the beach towel to the water was dreaded, especially when the rocks were scorching hot from the sun (my father used to tell us it would build character. As a child I thought he was making this stuff up – now I know better).
We often overlooked our feet or take them for granted.
Here’s my challenge for you.
Treat your feet like your hands, for they are the foundation of your life.
Did you know your feet can be as strong as your hands? By strengthening your feet, you will:
- Lift your pelvic floor and reduce the risk of incontinence
- Avoid knee issues
- Reduce back and neck pain
In Spanish, the word for fingers and toes are the same – dedos.
Here are 5 simple ways you can investigate, pamper, and strengthen your feet:
It will train your brain similarly to reading Braille. When we slide our fingers over a Braille book the readers receive messages to the brain the same way your feet receive messages when you are barefoot. Wearing shoes can desensitize the over 100 sensory neurons in your feet.
Use your toes
Start practicing picking things up with your feet – stones at the shore or that pen that rolled off your table. Heck, one of my students even sorted her laundry with her toes.
Stretch your feet
Add a simple plantar fascia stretch to your day – even your low back will enjoy this one. I had plantar fasciitis (heel pain) for years prior to yoga and Barre ( a dance format like Ballet). Here’ is a fav:
Gently come to Table pose on your hand and knees. Then tuck your toes under you, one foot at a time. You are now resting on the bottoms (pads) of your toes with your toenails facing up and the weight is on your knees and hands. If possible, gently lower your glutes towards your heels. This is fab for runners and anyone who has tightness in their feet.
Activate acupressure points
Lay a handful of rocks and marbles on a mat. With bare feet, start at the hell of one foot and begin to lower the foot onto the rocks and marbles and gently apply pressure. continue moving the foot up and then down the multiple times. Repeat on the other foot.
Pamper your feet
They love being massaged. Use with 1 teaspoon olive oil or moisturizer per foot. Bend one knee and place your ankle on the opposite leg. Warm the product between your hands. Now begin to massage in a circular motion from heel up and then from the middle outward.
Show your feet some love, they deserve it!
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