Quantcast
Friday, September 19 , 2014

3 Stretches to Ease Plantar Fasciitis

Your feet have good reason to get sore, especially if you hit the pavement all day in not-so-supportive shoes. If it seems like your feet (or one foot) just won't stop aching (in the heel area, or between the ball of your foot and your heel), you may have plantar fasciitis, when the plantar fascia (the ligament connecting your heel and the front of your foot) is yearning for relief! Here’s what to do…

If it's a dull foot ache, you may be able to relieve the pain with some good shoes...some rest…and some stretches. You can purchase shoe inserts (insoles that support your arches) over the counter, or ask your podiatrist what inserts would work best for your feet.

Our favorite stretches: Here are three stretches from two renowned foot experts who are well-acquainted with plantar fasciitis...

Stretch #1: Rest the affected foot on the thigh (or knee, if that's as far as you can reach) of your other leg...grip the base of the toes...and pull the toes toward the shin until you feel a stretch. Hold for 30 seconds. Repeat twice daily. This technique works to relieve tension and tautness in the plantar fascia.

Source for Stretch #1: Stuart J. Mogul, DPM, attending physician, Lenox Hill Hospital and podiatric surgeon in private practice, both in New York City. He is author of Perfect Feet (Stewart, Tabori and Chang).

Stretch #2: Lace your fingers between each toe (imagine holding hands with your foot)…or use physical toe-separator products, such as pedicure toe dividers (available at drugstores) or gel-filled YogaToes (available from YogaPro.com, 877- 964-2776). Open your toes with your fingers or with the separators for five to 30 minutes at least five days per week.

Caution: People with rigid bunions should not use YogaToes—they may strain the ligaments and cause additional pain.

Stretch #3: If you are a runner or a jogger, you’re probably familiar with this stretch—take one large step forward and bend your forward knee. Press the heel of the rear, straight leg onto the floor. Hold for 10 to 30 seconds, then switch leg positions. For added stretch, bend the rear knee as well. Perform this stretch twice daily on a regular basis.

Important: If your foot problems seriously affect your ability to walk or don't heal or improve after three weeks of home care, see a podiatrist.

Source for Stretches #2 and #3: Sherri Greene, DPM. She has practiced conventional and holistic podiatric medicine in New York City for more than 15 years. Her treatment modalities include reflexology, herbal medicine and essential oils. DrSherriGreene.com

More natural help for pain…

Natural Relief for Painful Muscle Cramps

Fast Help for Pain

7 Ways to Heal— and Prevent— Back Pain

 

READ COMMENTS
Monday, April 07 , 2014

Get Bach in Shape!

Do you need to get up and get moving, but the thought of exercise makes you groan? How about leading a band or an orchestra?! It's great exercise for the heart...really fun...and easy to do.

Orchestra conductors live seven-and-a-half years longer than the average person, according to recent research. It's no wonder. Enjoying music makes your body produce all kinds of live-long chemicals...and conducting is a real workout that helps strengthen the heart muscle and tone the circulatory system.

So go buy a baton at a music shop—yes, we really mean that. Or a pencil or a chopstick will do if you want to try this right now. Select music that inspires you to lead. Tap your music stand (or the back of a chair), and you're ready to begin. You may need to start slowly and work your way up to 10 minutes a day, or 20 minutes three times a week. Don't be shy about really moving—the musicians need you! (Do check with your doctor first if you have been sedentary or had heart problems in the past.) It's strenuous exercise...but lots of fun!

More ways to make exercise easy...

READ COMMENTS
Friday, November 23 , 2012

Pamper Your Shopped-Out Feet

To dissolve foot pain after shopping all day, add one cup of apple cider vinegar to a basin (or two plastic shoe boxes) filled halfway with lukewarm water. Then soak your feet for at least 15 minutes. The aches and pains of store-hopping should melt away.

READ COMMENTS