Ankle & Foot Pain

 

Turf Toe Stretches & Exercises

Turf toe is basically when you sprain the ligaments of your big toe joint. This happens a lot with football and soccer players who play on turf. These stretches and exercises should help the ligaments heal.

The first sequence takes a lot of coordination and concentration. Sit on floor with your legs straight out in front of you. Flex your foot upward, towards your face, and curl your toes in at the same time. Then point your foot downward, and bring your toes up at the same time. The sequence is foot up, toes down, foot down, toes up. Start off with 5-10 of these.

Next you will put a towel on the floor. You can stretch your toes by placing your foot on the towel. Leave your heel on the floor holding the towel in place, and pull the towel up and over your toes until you feel a stretch. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, and do it three times. Then try to crumple the towel with your toes. Start with 30 seconds and work your way up to a minute.

Now you will take resistive band and place it around your big toe for toe flexion exercises. Try to control the movement curling your big toe down, if it is too hard, put some slack on the band, or try it without a band. Start with 10 and work your way up to 20-25. If it becomes easy, you can go to a harder resistive band.

With your foot flat on the ground, you are going to do some arch exercises. Start off with the foot completely flat with your weight on your heel and toes. Roll your foot outwards lifting at your arch, but try to keep your heel and toes on the ground.

Then take a ball, it can be a tennis ball, lacrosse ball, etc., and roll it around the bottom of your foot and toes. Finally, prop your foot up on your heel, so your toes can move freely, and fan time out and in.

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Posterior Tibial Tendonitis Stretches & Exercises

Posterior tibial tendonitis can be very painful and make the foot unstable. These stretches and exercises should be able to help if your posterior tibial tendon becomes inflamed or torn.

The posterior tibial tendon can cause a lot of problems in the foot and ankle. It provides support and stability to the foot. It runs on the inside of the leg and foot, and it is the main muscle for inversion, or pulling your foot inwards.

Start off with propping your ankle up on a roll or hang your foot off the bed or table so your heel doesn't touch the floor. Put the band around the ball of your foot for good resistance. First, push your foot down and up. This is called ankle plantarflexion. Now you want to wrap the band around your other foot. This time you will have resistance pulling out. This is ankle eversion. Next you are going to cross your foot over the foot with the band as seen in the video, and pull your foot inward. This is ankle inversion. Try not to move the whole leg with these exercises. Just move at the ankle.

Now you are going to do some simple toe walking. Lift your heels off the ground and walk on your toes. Try to do this for 30 seconds, and work your way up to a minute. If you need to take a break in between, you can.

The next exercise will be a balance series. Stand on one foot, but hold onto something sturdy. Try to balance for 30 seconds to a minute. When that becomes easy, just use one finger one each side. Then just one finger for balance, and finally try balancing without holding on at all.

Finally, you will do a stretch. The stretch is similar to a soleus stretch. So you will start off leaning against something sturdy. Put the leg you want to stretch back into a lunge position. Keeping both feet facing forward, bend your front knee, and then keeping your back heel down bend your back knee. The final step to this stretch is to bend the knee inward toward your other knee to get the posterior tibialis stretch. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds, and repeat 3 times.

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Lateral Sprained Ankle Stretches & Exercises

Lateral Sprained Ankle Stretches & Exercises

Lateral ankle sprains can be very painful and cause your ankle to become unstable. These stretches and exercises should help the healing process.

The first stretch will be a calf stretch. Start off with your legs out in front of you. You can bend up the leg you aren’t using towards you in a comfortable position. Keep the leg you want to stretch out in front of you. Take a stretch strap, dog leash, belt, or towel and wrap it around the ball of your foot. Relax your foot, and pull the strap towards you stretching your calf muscle. You should feel the stretch under your leg. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, and do three of them.

Now prop your ankle up on a roll or hang your foot off the bed or table so your heel doesn't touch the floor. Put the band around the ball of your foot for good resistance. First, push your foot down and up. This is called ankle plantarflexion. Next you are going to cross your foot over the foot with the band as seen in the video, and pull your foot inward. This is ankle inversion. Now you want to wrap the band around your other foot. This time you will have resistance pulling out. This is ankle eversion.

The next exercise will be standing up. You want to lean against a wall or something sturdy. Place the foot you want to stretch behind you. Make sure to keep your heel down and your toes forward pointing towards the wall. With the other foot in front of you, like you are in a lunge position, bend your knee towards the wall until you feel a stretch through your back leg. Try to keep your back leg as straight as possible. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, and do it three times.

Now is a heel raise off the ground. Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart, come up on your toes as high as you can. Try not to lean forward, but bring your body straight up and slowly come back down. Push off as much as you can so your heel leaves the ground. Start off with ten and work your way up to 20-25.

The last exercise will be a balance series. Stand on one foot, but hold onto something sturdy. Try to balance for 30 seconds to a minute. When that becomes easy, just use one finger one each side. Then just one finger for balance, and finally try balancing without holding on at all.

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Achilles Tendinopathy Stretches & Exercises

These Achilles tendinopathy stretches and exercises will help loosen up and strengthen the Achilles tendon area. Tendinopathy is when tendonitis becomes chronic. It is what happens after the acute phase and can be very painful.

The first stretch will be using a step. Make sure you hold onto the rail or something sturdy when stretching on the step. Put the ball of your foot on the edge of the step so your heel is easily hanging off. Relax your heel down until you feel a stretch in the Achilles and calf area. If you need to push your body down some you can. Hold this stretch for 30 seconds and do three of them.

The next exercise is a heel raise off the ground. Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart, and come up on your toes as high as you can. Try not to lean forward, but bring your body straight up and slowly come back down. The coming back down is very important. This is the eccentric movement, and sometimes is harder to do. Push off as much as you can so your heel leaves the ground. Start off with ten and work your way up to 20-25.

Now will be balance with movement. Stand on one foot, and stay close to something sturdy to use as a target. Slowly reach forward until you touch the counter top or chair. You don’t have to touch anything either, you can just reach forward. Start off with 10 and work your way up from there.

The last exercise will be a sideways movement with a slight squat. Keeping your feet forward, step out to the side. As you are stepping out, bend slightly into a squat. Make sure you stick your bottom back so your knees stay behind your toes. You can go to one side 10-20 feet, and then come back the other way. If that becomes easy, you can use a resistive band wrapped around your ankles or your thighs to make it more challenging.

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Achilles Tendon Rupture Stretches & Exercises

Achilles Tendon Rupture Stretches & Exercises

With an Achilles Tendon Rupture, you might end up needing surgery. These stretches and exercises can help you before and afterwards. The stronger and more flexible you can be before a surgery, the better your recovery will be after.

The first stretch will be a calf stretch. Start off with your legs out in front of you. You can bend up the leg you aren’t using towards you in a comfortable position. Keep the leg you want to stretch out in front of you. Take a stretch strap, dog leash, belt, or towel and wrap it around the ball of your foot. Relax your foot, and pull the strap towards you stretching your calf muscle. You should feel the stretch under your leg. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, and do three of them.

Next you will do a standing calf stretch. You want to lean against a wall or something sturdy. Place the foot you want to stretch behind you. Make sure to keep your heel down and your toes forward pointing towards the wall. With the other foot in front of you, like you are in a lunge position, bend your knee towards the wall until you feel a stretch through your back leg. Try to keep your back leg as straight as possible. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, and do it three times. In the same position, now bend your back knee with the stretch. This will stretch the soleus muscle, which is directly under the calf muscles. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds, and do it three times.

Now you will do some exercises. The first exercise is a heel raise off the ground. Stand with your feet about shoulder width apart, come up on your toes as high as you can. Try not to lean forward, but bring your body straight up and slowly come back down. Push off as much as you can so your heel leaves the ground. Start off with ten and work your way up to 20-25.

The last exercise will be a balance series. Stand on one foot, but hold onto something sturdy. Try to balance for 30 seconds to a minute. When that becomes easy, just use one finger one each side. Then just one finger for balance, and finally try balancing without holding on at all.

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