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  • Sheehy Ankle & Foot Center

6 Effective Foot and Ankle Strengthening Exercises for Better Mobility and Stability

Maintaining strong and stable feet and ankles is crucial for overall mobility and preventing injuries. Whether you're an athlete, a fitness enthusiast, or simply someone looking to keep fit, incorporating targeted exercises into your routine can make a significant difference. Here are six effective exercises to strengthen your feet and ankles!

 

Toe Taps

  • Sit comfortably on a chair with your feet flat on the floor.

  • Lift your toes while keeping your heels on the ground, creating a tapping motion.

  • Lower your toes back to the ground.

  • Repeat for 15-20 taps for three sets.

Benefits:

Toe taps help improve toe dexterity and strengthen the muscles in the tops of your feet, enhancing overall foot stability.

 

Calf Raises

  • Stand with your feet hip-width apart.

  • Slowly rise onto the balls of your feet, lifting your heels off the ground.

  • Hold the raised position for a moment.

  • Lower your heels back down.

  • Repeat for 15-20 repetitions for three sets.

 

Benefits:

Calf raises target the muscles in your calves, which play a crucial role in ankle stability and help prevent injuries like sprains.

 

Ankle Circles

  • Sit or stand comfortably with one leg lifted off the ground.

  • Rotate your ankle in a circular motion, clockwise and then counterclockwise.

  • Perform 10 circles in each direction.

  • Switch to the other leg and repeat.

 

Benefits:

Ankle circles enhance joint mobility, strengthen the muscles surrounding the ankle, and improve overall flexibility.

 

Resistance Band and Weights

Resistance Band Exercises

  • Sit on the floor with your legs extended.

  • Loop a resistance band around a fixed point and the ball of your foot.

  • Flex and point your foot against the resistance of the band.

  • Perform 15-20 repetitions for three sets on each foot.


Benefits:

Resistance band exercises target the muscles in the feet and ankles, providing resistance to build strength and stability.


Marble Pickup

  • Place marbles on the floor and a small container next to them.

  • Sit comfortably with your feet on the marbles.

  • Use your toes to pick up the marbles and drop them into the container.

  • Repeat until all marbles are transferred.

 

Benefits:

Marble pickups improve toe strength and coordination, contributing to better balance and stability.


Heel-to-Toe Walk

  • Stand with your feet in a straight line, heel to toe.

  • Take small steps, ensuring your heel touches the toe of the opposite foot with each step.

  • Walk forward for 20 steps and then backward for another 20 steps.


Benefits:

This exercise promotes balance and stability by challenging the coordination of your foot and ankle muscles.


Incorporating these exercises into your regular fitness routine can help you build strength, stability, and flexibility in your feet and ankles. However, if you have pre-existing foot conditions, it's advisable to consult with a healthcare professional or a physical therapist before starting a new exercise program. ♦

 

Podiatrist newsletter article provided by LRW Media. Images provided by Unsplash/Kelly Sikkema.

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