Back in March, I promised I would post a beginning foot sequence, and several people have since written to request such a routine. So, this week we took a few minutes to film a sitting and standing foot and ankle warmup and conditioning sequence to help develop mobility, flexibility and strength in the feet, ankles and legs. The sitting sequence also incorporates an opening pelvic tuck and arch that leads to a spinal wave from the pelvis to the neck. As you begin to practice these movements regularly, you will notice that you feel the connections go from the feet and ankles, up through the knees, and into the upper legs and lower back.
Either or both of these sequences are a great way to warm up before yoga, running, hiking, martial arts, dance, skiing, basketball…you get the idea. In addition to working with the muscles, connective tissues, and bones of the feet and ankles, this work also activates the stretch receptors in the muscles and joint-supporting ligaments to update your proprioceptive map and improve balance and coordination.
These two sequences are quick and easy, and hopefully will provide a good basis for you to develop your own variations to best serve your needs. The “melting over a tennis ball” that I demonstrate at the end of the standing routine has proven to be very useful for helping to heal all kinds of foot issues including plantar fasciitis. It is especially effective when done regularly in combination with the other exercises.
Special thanks to Richard for videography and cat wrangling. You will notice Merry the Cat licking her chops as she makes a cameo appearance during the sitting sequence. The goat butter treat kept her occupied for just long enough.
Yours in healthy feet,