If you’ve been on your toes all day and need some quick relief, try these easy stretches to soothe sore feet.
Many of us have active lives or jobs that require a lot of standing and walking. Our feet carry the entire weight of our body and rarely get the care they deserve. When foot pain is left neglected, our feet are more susceptible to injury and other problems, possibly even making it difficult to walk!
It’s not just an active lifestyle that can cause foot pain. High impact exercise, plantar fasciitis, arthritis, being flat-footed, or wearing uncomfortable shoes can cause similar foot problems.
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Caring for your feet can help you prevent and soothe away pain, and doing it yourself is a huge bonus because it costs you nothing.
Turn to these seven quick and easy stretches anytime you need to revive tired, sore feet. They’re even better than a foot massage, as these stretches refresh the blood flow and keep your feet healthy, mobile, and less prone to injury.
You can do these foot stretches anywhere. All you need is a chair, a yoga block, a towel and a can that’s been in the freezer at least two hours (yes, just trust us). Now slip off your shoes and socks – let’s get started!
Tip: I recommend warming up your feet before stretching them. Two easy ways you can do this:
- Soak your feet in a warm water bath. Fill a large bowl or bucket with warm water and soak your feet for about three to five minutes prior to following these stretches.
- Rest your feet on a heating pad. To make your own homemade rice heating pad, pour any kind of dry rice into a long sock, tie the top into a knot, then microwave for 2 minutes. Place your feet on top of the rice heating pad for three to five minutes prior to following these stretches.
The warmth of the bath or heating pad will relax the muscles of your feet allowing a greater stretch and even more benefit.
The 7 Best Foot Pain Stretches
These stretches can be done as often as needed to soothe sore feet.
Toe Point-Flex | 3 reps per side
- Sit on the ground. Stretch one leg long and place a yoga block underneath the ankle.
- Point your toe as far as you can and hold it for two deep breaths.
- Flex your foot as far as you can and hold for another 10 seconds.
- Continue to alternate between point and flex three times, then switch feet.
Toe Forward Fold | 3 reps per side
- Sit on the right front corner of a chair.
- Place one yoga block to the right of the chair’s front legs.
- Bend your right knee and place your toes topside down on the middle of the block.
- Gently press your toes down on the block to feel the stretch.
- Hold for five deep breaths, then switch to the other side.
- Alternate sides until you’ve completed three stretches on each side.
Foot Stretch | 3 reps per side
- Sit on a chair and place your right ankle over your left knee.
- Wrap your left hand over the top of your toes and gently pull them towards you.
- Hold for two deep breaths.
- Repeat on the other foot.
- Continue alternating sides until you’ve completed three stretches on each side.
Frozen Can Roll | 8 reps per side
- Freeze an aluminum can for at least two hours. The cold helps reduce inflammation of the foot.
- Sit in a chair and place the frozen can underneath one foot.
- Roll your foot forward and back to massage and cool the sole of your foot.
- Continue for eight rolls forward and back, then switch sides.
Toe Stretch | 8 reps per side
- Cross one leg over the other, and place your fingers in between the toes of your raised foot.
- Press forward to flex your foot.
- Pull back to stretch the top of your foot.
- Continue eight times forward and back, then switch feet.
Towel Foot Flex | 3 reps per side
- While seated in a chair, roll a towel up and loop it over the ball of your right foot.
- Straighten your right leg and pull the towel towards you to stretch your foot in a flexed position.
- Hold the stretch for five deep breaths, then switch and do the same on the left side.
Kneeling Plantar Stretch | 5 deep breaths
- Start in an all-fours position with your toes tucked.
- Sit back on your heels and sit straight upright to stretch the bottoms of your feet.
- Lean forward for more of a gentle stretch, or lean back to intensify the stretch.
- Hold for at least five deep breaths, longer if you feel comfortable enough to.
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