Basic Foot Series
This series is designed to open up the joints and stretch the muscles of the lower leg and foot. This is a critical component of re-adjusting after being in ski boots or other footwear that is rough on the feet. It will also help to build the muscle of the lower leg feet while improving its resilience in order to absorb impact and support the rest of your body effectively.
Retraining and Building Awareness in the Lower Leg and Foot
Lift toes while pressing ball of the foot behind the big toe and also behind the small toes into the floor. Work at spreading all toes wide and lifting the arch from the bottom of the foot rather than from the top of the foot. This means do not use your ankle to move your arch further from the floor - it means use the muscles of your foot to actually contract your arch lifting it from the floor.
Opening the Ankle with Lateral Movement
Widen stance to beyond shoulder width, keeping outside edges of feet parallel. Ankles will be bent to accommodate stance.
Keeping all other elements in place, lift the big toe.
Keep stretching toes outward while lifting big toe and lifting arch from beneath the foot. This means do not use your ankle to move your arch further from the floor - it means use the muscles of your foot to actually contract your arch lifting it from the floor.
Opening the Knee with Flexion
Place a cushion on the floor and kneel on the cushion. Prior to settling all the way to a sitting kneel, adjust the knees upward and place a rolled up blanket or yoga mat as far into the bend of the knees as possible. Settle back into a sitting position as far as possible, using a yoga block for support where needed.
Opening the Ankle with Flexion
Hold onto a door for bracing and place the foot flat upon the door, bending knees and body as needed to make this possible.
Begin re-positioning body to a vertical position close to the door, allowing heel to move outward.
Continue re-positioning the body and the foot until foot is flat on the floor with only the toes still in vertical position against the door.
Begin toe traction by placing the weight of the heel of one foot onto the large toe of the other foot. Shift the body weight to the balls of both feet, allowing the back foot to raise the heel while keeping the big toe in place.
Opening the Forefoot and Aligning the Big Toe
Stretching Muscles, Tendons and Fascia From Ankle to Toes
Stretching the Muscles, Tendons and Fascia of the Lower Leg with Extension
It may be difficult to achieve benefit from these poses without knowledgeable help. Please feel free to contact me at any time should you require clarification. Please do not attempt any of these poses if they cause pain in anyway, As always, use common sense, this post, and all others on this site are not meant as medical advice.