Foot And Toe Stretches That Will Keep You Flexible

You've known about the importance of stretching since elementary school. It's why your teacher always had you do it before and after your workouts in gym class. Quad stretches, tricep stretches, core stretches, and so on. But even if exercise isn't involved, stretching is still beneficial.


Stretching the feet and toes is especially important if you spend a lot of time on them or if you engage in high-impact exercises like running or jumping rope. One of the biggest benefits of foot and toe stretching is that it can improve flexibility, which can help prevent injuries, enable you to more easily perform everyday activities, and improve joint movement.

The following are a few stretches for your feet and toes that will keep you flexible during your workouts and everyday life. These stretches can all be done at home. However, if you've had a recent foot or toe injury or are experiencing discomfort in these areas, contact your doctor before performing any of these stretches.

Seated toe raise, point, and curl stretch

To perform a seated toe raise, point, and curl stretch, sit on a standard-height chair so that your knees are at a 90-degree angle, as Medical News Today demonstrates. Make sure your feet are planted firmly on the floor in front of you with your knees a few inches apart; slide your butt forward, if necessary.


For the "raise" part of the stretch, place your feet flat on the floor to start. Then lift your heels up until only the balls of your feet are touching the floor. Wait five seconds and bring the heels back down.

Next is the "point" step. Move your feet closer to the chair until only your big and second toes are touching the ground. Scoot your butt toward the back of the chair if necessary. Hold the stretch for another five seconds before dropping the heels.

For the "curl" step, pull your feet a few inches closer to the chair. If your heels aren't already raised off the ground, raise them up and curl your toes toward your heels while keeping the toe tips touching the ground. Wait five seconds before circling back to the first step. Repeat the steps about 10 times.


Runner's calf stretch

As the name indicates, the runner's calf stretch is recommended for runners because it stretches the calves, which are one of the muscles that are most likely to tighten after running. Dr. Jane Anderson, a board-certified podiatrist, spoke with Real Simple on the topic, saying, "These muscles are notoriously tight, so the best way to loosen them is with your classic runner's stretch."


Unlike the toe raise, point, and curl stretch, this is a standing stretch. Here's how to do it: First stand about 3 feet in front of a wall (or any other solid, stationary object that you can lean against) and place your hands against it. Take a step forward while leaning toward the wall. Then straighten the other leg, keeping both heels planted on the ground. If you don't feel a pull in the calf muscle, move the back leg farther back. Hold for about 30 seconds before releasing and switching legs.

Big toe stretch

The big toe stretch involves pulling your big toe toward your body. This digit helps provide stability and shock absorption for the foot, as Kinetic Health Chiropractic Clinic explains. Having flexible joints in the big toe aids in this stabilization, which is why it's so important to stretch them to prevent stiffening.


Here's how to stretch the big toes: Sit down on a chair with your feet flat on the floor in front of you. Take a stretching strap, belt, or similar item and place it over one of your big toes and pull it upward. Keep the rest of your foot planted firmly on the ground. While keeping resistance on the band, push the toe back down to the ground. Hold for a few seconds and repeat about 10 times. Do the same with the other toe. Rehab My Patient provides a tutorial of the stretch on their YouTube channel.

Toe spread stretch

To perform this stretch, sit down on the ground with your legs straight in front of you, your feet and toes relaxed. Then, using your toe muscles, stretch your toes out as far as you can, as Athletico Physical Therapy explains. Hold for about five seconds and repeat about 10 times. You can also perform this stretch in a standing or chair-seated position while bearing some weight on your feet.


What's nice about this stretch is that it doesn't just help with mobility. It also strengthens the toe and feet muscles to help with balance and prevent injuries, according to MoveU. It also supports proper toe alignment, which is important for running, walking, and any other activity that involves pushing off the ground with your feet.

This stretch, along with the big toe stretch; runner's stretch; and toe raise, point, and curl stretch can keep your toes and feet flexible, allowing you to exercise and perform your everyday activities comfortably.