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Fitness for feet

Healthy habits for happy feet

03 MAY 2011

With summer coming, it's time to discard heavy boots and thick socks and tights and find your feet again. Here are some exercises to help get those toes and tootsies back in trim:


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  • Walk on your heels, feeling the stretch in your calf muscles. (This is for when you're barefoot or wearing training shoes, not when you've got your stilettos on!)
  • Get up on your tippy toes and hold it. Gently lower, then repeat. (Hold onto a chair back or the wall, if you need to for balance.)
  • Stand on one leg. Bend the other leg at the knee and make circular movements from the ankle, first in one direction, then in the other. Flex your foot up and down from the ankle. Repeat while standing on the other leg.
  • Try to pick up marbles or other small objects with your toes.
  • If your work involves being on your feet all day, make sure you move around and try to change shoes at least once during the day.
  • If you sit at a desk, remember that you can do some exercises while you are working: stretch your legs out and draw circles in the air with your toes.

Once the warm weather gets here, you'll find that one of life's simple pleasures is good for your feet: walking barefoot on the sand – or even on the grass in your own back garden – will help tone muscles, improve circulation, soften hard skin patches and ease joints. What could be simpler?

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