Foot Fitness Exercise Programme: Relieve Foot Pain
Free2Move’s Foot Fitness Exercise Programme has been developed by our principal Physiotherapist Jodie Krantz. It addresses common causes of foot pain such as pronation, joint hypermobility, plantar fasciitis, bunions (hallux valgus), neuroma and metatarsalgia. Jodie has helped people with many different types of foot pain to find lasting relief.
This programme is ideal for complex, recurrent or persistent foot pain (also known as chronic pain) even when it has not responded to the usual treatments, for example Physiotherapy, Podiatry or surgery. The focus is on finding a more ideal alignment, stretching and / or strengthening the feet, legs and core muscles.
A home exercise programme using small firm domes called Foot Wakers and Foot Savers is at the heart of the programme. Jodie believes that the excessive use of orthotics can be detrimental to maintaining healthy foot structure and function. She has found that barefoot exercises to mobilise and strengthen the foot often work when other treatments have failed.
Improving biomechanics and decreasing sensitization to relieve foot pain
Faulty biomechanics and / or incorrect footwear are predisposing factors in many forms of persistent foot pain. In addition, pain sensitization is often an issue and to change this, you need to change the way the brain and nervous system are functioning.
This is where a knowledge of both Clinical Pilates and the Feldenkrais Method can be helpful. Clinical Pilates helps with finding the optimal alignment as well as stretching and strengthening to improve biomechanics. The Feldenkrais Method helps to improve functional activities such as walking, climbing stairs or running and assists with reversing pain sensitization.
Good alignment and orthotics in the relief of foot pain
The primary focus of the exercise programme is to find the best possible alignment between the foot, knee and hip and to improve the functional use of the foot in standing, balancing, walking and any sports or recreational activities. This involves far more than just the foot, in fact even what you are doing with your head, neck and shoulders can affect foot function and gait.
Although orthotics are often helpful as a way to restore good alignment of the foot and ankle, they are primarily a passive form of support. Like a walking stick or crutches, sometimes they are the best long-term solution to foot pain. Whenever possible though, Jodie believes it is better to develop the strength and stability to find good alignment without dependence on orthotics. This is why the exercises are usually done barefoot.
Personal experience with foot pain
Jodie has used exercises with the Foot Wakers and Foot Savers to overcome the pain of Hallux Rigidus, a type of osteoarthritis affecting the big toe. For several years Jodie was unable to walk regularly and even walking around a shopping centre would result in significant pain and swelling. Now Jodie walks comfortably for at least 45 minutes daily and recently participated in a 60km walk in Perth to raise funds for breast and ovarian cancer research.
The programme is customised to suit each person, but usually involves:
- 3 fourty minute individual appointments
- a daily home exercise programme
- a small group supervised exercise programme
The best way to get started on our Foot Fitness Exercise Programme is to book an individual assessment with Jodie.