About 20-30% of the world’s population suffers from foot deformities. People familiar with this problem also often experience knee, hip, and back pain. If you notice that you are developing flat feet, a few simple exercises can help you correct the situation and avoid possible future damage.
We have checked the recommendations of several doctors and want to share with you 7 exercises that are recommended to be done 3 times a day. At the end of the article, there’s a bonus that you can use to find out the height of your foot arch.
1. Use a towel
- Sit in a chair and put a towel under your foot.
- Start grasping the towel with your toes. Your heels should be pressed to the floor.
- Curl and release your toes and slowly pull the towel toward you.
- Do this with an awareness that the arch of your foot is being strengthened.
- Change feet and do the same exercise again.
- Do 2–3 sets of 10–15 repetitions.
2. Raise and scrunch
- Place your towel on a step. Have a chair in front of you for support.
- Start to scrunch the towel with your toes and then drop your heel lower toward the ground. Allow it to go below the line of the step.
- Place the other foot on the step and use that foot only to lift yourself up again.
- Do 2 sets of 10 repetitions for each foot.
3. Roll the ball
- Sit on a chair. Your spine should be straight. Put a tennis ball under your foot.
- Start rolling the ball back and forth. Don’t forget about your back. Don’t relax it and keep it straight.
- Do this exercise for 2–3 minutes.
- Repeat it with the opposite foot.
4. Strengthen your arch muscles
- Sit down in a chair. Cross your foot over the opposite thigh.
- Wrap an elastic band around your foot. If you don’t already have them, you can find these bands at sporting goods stores or at a pharmacy.
- Raise your foot up with your hands.
- Then slowly lower your foot back down to the starting position.
- Do 2 sets of 10 repetitions with each foot.
5. Raise your toes during the day
- You can even do this exercise in the office while you work on the computer.
- Take a seat. Put your feet on the floor.
- Lift up your toes, so your feet will make an arch.
- Slowly put your toes down while maintaining the arch, so you feel that your arch muscles are tense.
- Hold this position for 5 seconds and then relax your feet.
- Do 5 repetitions on each foot.
6. Do calf stretches
- Stand in front of a wall and place both hands on the wall.
- Stretch your leg behind you with your knee straight and your toes forward.
- With your heel on the ground, start leaning forward until you feel a stretch in your calf in the back of your leg.
- Hold this position for 30 to 60 seconds.
- Repeat the exercise 4 times on each leg.
7. Do toe yoga
- Sit down. Concentrate on your toes.
- Lift the big toe up. At the same time press the other 4 toes down. Hold this position for 5 seconds.
- Now press the big toe down and lift the other 4 toes up. Hold for 5 seconds.
- Repeat 10 times on each foot.
Bonus: Check to see if you have flat feet.
There is a simple technique of how you can check your arch height.
- Make your feet wet.
- Stand on a flat surface where your footprint will show. You can use a piece of paper for that.
- Step away and check the prints. If your footprints are complete without any dry place, then you’re likely to have flat feet.
In case if you have this problem, consult with your doctor before trying to fix it by yourself.