Is Foot Pain Limiting You?
One-quarter of the bones in your body are found in your feet, and with more than 100 muscles, tendons and ligaments, it's easy to see why the potential for foot injury is so high.
Many individuals develop pain and inflammation from simple daily activities like standing, walking, and running. With so much riding on your feet (pun intended), proper foot care is crucial to your quality of life. So what can you do to take care of these complex appendages?
Strengthen Your Feet
Try these simple exercises throughout the day at work or at home to keep your piggly wigglies in tip-top shape.
Towel Scrunches with Toes: Begin stepping one foot forward foot to rest on a flat towel with the knee slightly bent. Use your toes to scrunch up the towel, making sure to keep the rest of your foot in contact with the ground. Perform 15 scrunches on each foot.
Calf Raise to Big Toe Press: In your bare feet, perform a traditional calf raise, but then proceed and press onto your big toe. This part is difficult for most, so feel free to hang on to something for balance. Perform 15 reps on each foot.
Single-Leg Stance on Pad: Stand on a foam pad (or a couch cushion that’s thick enough that you can’t feel the ground below) with your feet together and arms at your sides. Make sure your weight is evenly distributed throughout your feet. Lift one foot off the pad, balancing on your other leg. Try not to move your arms away from your body or let your weight shift from side to side as you hold this position for 30 seconds and switch sides. Complete four reps on each side.
Acupuncture for Feet
If your feet are in too much pain to complete the strengthening exercises above, and conventional treatments like ice, topical creams, and pain medication don’t seem to be alleviating your foot problems, acupuncture offers a more natural way to treat your sore feet. Regular acupuncture sessions have been shown to effectively relieve chronic foot pain that is otherwise unresponsive (Edwards, 1996).
Consider acupuncture if you are experiencing foot pain related to the following conditions:
overuse or exercise
stiffness or arthritis
If you identify with any of these conditions, speak with your acupuncturist at your next appointment to determine if acupuncture may be a good solution for you.
Erickson RJ, Edwards B. Medically unresponsive foot pain treated successfully with acupuncture. Acupuncture in Medicine November 1996.