Happy & Healthy Feet Workshop P5

Sometimes, we overdo things, right?  Little bit, little pieces.  The stuff I’m telling you to do, literally five minutes in a day.  I might tell you to do it two times a day.  Ten minutes of your day.  That’s all I want.  I don’t want you doing any more than that because you’re going to take it to the extreme, and you’re going to go back the other way.  It’s this big pendulum.  So, this, couple of minutes.  Work it out.  See what it’s doing.

Second thing we got going on here, towel exercise.  Now, this towel’s really not going to move because of the surface I have, and you don’t technically need a towel to do this.  You can do this all on your own, and you can do it there.  You put your feet on the towel.  If you have a slippery surface, the towel will move, and this will tell where your pole is if you’re keeping that V-shaped tension.  You lift the toes up.  The first thing you want to notice when you lift your toes up is this happening or this happening?  Unevenness, right?  Part of the problem that’s happening with that big heel strike is we’re losing a lot of flexibility in the ankles.  This will start to bring that flexibility back.

For m Achilles people, this can help because if you’re very tight in the front here, your Achilles is taking a lot of pressure because it’s not having the moving the ankle should have.  So, you pick this up, and as you pick up, make sure you’re not just pulling back with the toes and doing this or that.  That’s what a lot of people are going to want to do because they don’t know how to flex the ankle.  You want to deep flex the ankle.  So, when you do that, you’re going to feel the stretch through the shin.  You want that stretch.  That’s also going to strengthen the ankle.

You’re then going to place the toes down, and you’re going to pull the towel to you.  Now, if I had a smooth surface, the towel would pull, and I’m going to pull the towel towards me.  When I pull, I want to make sure that I’m pulling evenly.  What you’ll notice, and this is where you can do this test, if you’re pulling like this, you’re going to see the towel’s coming uneven.  When you pull, you’re going to come straight.  That’s going to be your test, but otherwise, you can do this at the dinner table.  You can do one foot at a time, pulling and reaching, keeping that evenness. You’re still trying to keep that even balance as you do it, and then you reverse it.  You tuck the toes under.  You press out.  Same things, tuck, and press out.  You’re just going both directions, and you just want to know that the towel’s pulling evenly.  That’s the key.

Next one we got here, again, that same kind of lift.  We’re not pulling back with the toes.   Same kind of lift.  We’re pulling up.  We’re pressing out, down, and we’re pulling in.  So, for those of you that are pronators, that are rolling in, this is good because what you’re going to start to feel is the inside line here working.  This helps strengthen the shin, helps strengthen the calves, and helps strengthen the foot.  When we’re talking about the foot, it’s not just the foot that’s the problem.

All of these other structure have to be balanced out with the foot.  If all you do is address the foot and not address the rest of the leg, again, we’re still having those imbalances.  So, you have to address more than just the foot.  You do this the opposite way, as well.  So, if you’ve done this way, then the opposite way is you press out, lift up, pull in.  This is for really working.  You want your knees together.  If you keep your knees together, it’s a different feeling completely.  You’re going to feel that working in there.  It’s going to help your ankle.

This is going to be a good ankle strengthener, and this is going to be good for building that flexibility in those areas.   You can feel it, and you might cramp.  Your feet might cramp when you do some of this.  Your feet are going what are you doing?  I don’t know how to work that. What are you doing?  I’m freaking out.


You drag out, lift up, pull together, and down.  Now, remember when you go to pick up, you want to make sure, you’re not having the feet roll funky.  You want them straight on as much as possible, and that’s going make you feel it deeper in the ankle that way and deeper in the shin.  You might even feel it all the way up to the leg. When we’re talking about the feet, again, like I said, they’re not isolated.  They’re part of a bigger structure.  So, you are going to end up working more than just that.

You also can just do points and flexes.  You point the foot.  You flex the foot.  The key here, though, when you’re pointing or flexing the foot, is to not do it with the toes.  There’s that toe thing again.  A lot of us are just going to pull up the toes like this.  All you’re doing is overstretching the toes.  You’re not really using that ankle.  What I like to think is as I press pull up, I really want to make sure I’m deeply pressing through the ankle and reaching the heel out.  Does that make sense?

So, you really want that big movement.  Then you can circle the ankle.  When you circle the ankle, you want a full motion.  You want to try to keep the leg because what most of you are going to do is I’m moving it, I’m moving it.  Keep the legs straight.  Just move the ankle.  Think about making the biggest circle with your biggest toe that you possibly can.   For my Achilles people, this is going to be good for balancing that out.  So, big circles.

Last one I’m going to show you, standing footwork.  Standing footwork, we stand up.  The key here is to make sure that we’re staying there balanced, all the stuff we’ve talked about.  This is like the crème de la crème here.  We take everything we’ve been talking about, and now we put it into an exercise.  Full body.

So, we’re going to bend our knees, keeping our heels on the floor.  As we bend down, we’re trying to keep all that pressure even.  This way, we’re getting that deep bend in the ankle.  You might be feeling your shins in these.  You could feel calves.  You could feel boobs.  You’re then going to keep this knee bent and pick our feet up.  The key here, not rolling in or out of those feet. That’s going to be the tricky part.  You, then, stand up and lower down.  So, this also going to improve your balance tremendously.

So, as we do this, try to keep that balance.  What I don’t want to see from people is this thing, this jam in the ankles. You want to make sure as you pick up, you’re keeping control and you’re keeping balance with the bottom of our foot there.   Now, you reverse this as well.  The reverse of this is we come all the way up.  We bend our knees.  We lower our heels, and we straighten up.  So, you lift up.  You bend.  You lower, and you straighten up.

So, this is another exercise.  This is the Mac Daddy of those exercises.  It really can work the feet.  You really want to keep all of the things you’re talking about, keeping the balance, keeping all of that.  You can come up here and take a card.  I have a YouTube channel and have these exercises on them.  So, you’ve got them video.  You don’t have to worry about writing them all down.

One other quick thing you can do, this is a simple one, is you can pick your toes up and place one toe down at a time.  This is learning control of the feet.  What this does is this helps you get control of those toes.  For those people who have those toes coming in or hammer toes, this is going to you start working those back out.  You do it baby toe first and then down, and then try reverse it. You’re going to see mine doesn’t reverse very well.  They don’t, but it’s the thought pattern and training those and getting the bottoms of the feet to start working and getting that dexterity back into the feet.  They’re almost like hands.

Really building this dexterity, what you’re going to find is you’re doing these exercises, your body will start to become more natural with the feet.  Your shoes are going to get small.  You’re going to have to buy new shoes.  So, sorry about that, but as you start getting the feet back to the natural place, they’re going to widen out.  The bones are going to come a little more spread out to where they’re supposed to be and more natural.  You’re going to have to buy new shoes, a little bit of wider shoe.


I didn’t think I could get wider either, and it happened.  So, it does happen.  On these exercise, don’t kill yourself on them.  Simplify. Simplify. Simplify your life.  Five minutes, 10 minutes a day.  That’s it.  Pick one or two exercises.  Start off for about two weeks doing them every day, 5 to 10 minutes in your day.  That’s it, practicing your standing and your walking.

After those two weeks, if you’re starting to feel a little bit stronger in the feet.  You’re starting to ease some of that pain, move to one time during the day for the next couple of weeks, and then after that, every other day.  Work them when you need them.  It can happen that fast.  Don’t feel like you can jump real quick, but it can happen that fast if you’re diligent about it and not overworking it.

Simplify. Easy. Simplify.

Those are the best exercises I can tell you.  They will start to make a difference.  You’re standing, becoming aware, taking these different tips, and bringing them into your daily life.  Make it a part of your life.  If your body feels like it needs to do some points and flexes, do that.  Don’t get so diligent like I have to do this exercise every day.

Listen to your body.  Your body’s going to tell you whether it wants this one or points and flexes.  Just start doing those natural things.  That’s like what cats do.  They wake up.  They stretch and they do these things.

Start listening to your body.  Your feet will tell you that as you start doing this.

Simplify.  Make it a part of your life.

Any questions?  Anything that wasn’t clear?  Anything of that sort I can answer for you.  I do have, as I said, business cards up here.  A couple of them cut out as I didn’t bring enough business cards.  Okay.  One of these ones?  There’s a YouTube channel.  It’s called Pilates.  My YouTube channel’s Mindful Movement.  It’s under Pilates Foot Exercises.  There’s also one that says More Pilates Foot Exercises.  There’s three different ones out there.

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