Centerworks Blog

Latest "Foot Care & Foot Fitness" Posts

Young or Old: Healthy Feet Are Needed At Every Age

Father and Child's FeetIt doesn’t matter if you’re young, or old, healthy feet are needed at every age!

Before we can walk, we have to crawl…  The development of adequate core, hip, and leg strength is a part of the equation to help us get UP on our feet when we begin exploring what it’s like to stand and walk on two legs.

As we age…it’s a funny thing, when our feet hurt – whether from injury, accident, wearing poor shoes, lack of proper strength or flexibility we are faced not only with needing to take better care of our feet, but also will be well-served by re-evaluating our exercise and daily life habits and determine what’s lacking for balanced-muscle development so we can maintain our healthy feet.

Shifting our weight to avoid walking on a sore toe, shortening our stride to limit foot action from plantar fasciitis, the joint misalignment, and resulting lack of muscle use that can be created by bunions and hammer toes, standing on your dominant leg to take the pressure off a sprained ankle or bum knee…  In the moment none of these compensation patterns seem like a big deal, but cumulatively over time, they can set us up for repetitive strain injuries, more pain, and new problems.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

What Running Shoes to Wear?

Tips for Selecting the Right Running Shoes

shoes“Aliesa, I watched your Foot Fitness Training video for Runners & Walkers and I know you said you get the “what shoes to wear” question a lot.  At the risk of being one more person with this question, what running shoes would you recommend? 

I am in the market for new shoes and thought I’d see if you have a preference before I purchase any. 

Thank you again for your response and for all the great information on your website.  I look forward to starting my Fantastic Feet exercises!  – RM.

My best answer for figuring out what shoes to wear and selecting the RIGHT Running Shoes for your feet is this…

You’ve got to buy the shoes that fit your feet the best
AND help you maintain correct foot & ankle alignment.

Running Shoe Shopping Tips

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness, Running.

Foot-Care Solutions to Help Alleviate Bunion Pain

feetAre you searching for non-surgical foot-care solutions to help alleviate Bunion pain?

I recently received these great Bunion foot-care questions from Rebecca.  Since I know there are others out there asking the same questions, and searching for solutions I thought I’d share her questions and my reply.

 “I have just begun to have bunion problems and would love to find a non-surgical option to alleviate this problem.  Are there specific exercises for bunions?  Is there any hope of an upcoming book for specific foot problems such as bunions?”  –  Rebecca.

Hi Rebecca, thanks for contacting Centerworks with your foot-fitness questions!  I know Bunions have the potential to create a lifetime of agonizing foot pain. While I don’t have a “Bunion” specific book out yet… there are definitely foot fitness exercises that you can do to help keep your Toes in better alignment to help alleviate Bunion pain.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Flat Feet and Fallen Arches – Are your Summer Feet Starting to Feel Flip-Flopped?

flip flopsDo you have flat feet and fallen arches?  Are you starting to notice that your feet aren’t feeling up to par?  When you stand up tall and look down do you see a nice lifted arch, or are you noticing that your feet seem to be getting flatter, arches are falling?  Are your feet are starting to hurt more instead of less?  What you’re wearing on your feet may be a big part of the reason your foot pain problems are getting worse.

Answer this question:  Because it’s summer, have you been spending more time in your flip-flops and strappy backless sandals instead of good supportive shoes?  Yes or No?

Do you realize that you are much better off to go barefoot all summer than spend ANY time in flip-flops, flats and strapless sandals!  And here’s why…

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Foot Arch Strengthening Tip: Feeling Your Feet – Reaching Through The Rays

Keep your feet healthy and arches lifted and strong, help eliminate foot pain to stay active, pain-free, and fit

sunshineA quick foot fitness tip for you today:  Think of the rays of your feet, like little Rays of Sunshine!  When you’re practicing your Fantastic Feet exercises or doing any exercise where you rise up on your toes or point through your feet – focus on feeling your foot bones lengthen away from your body like little rays of sunshine. 

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Foot Pain FAQ’s and Simple Foot Exercise Solutions for Fantastic Feet!

Check out these foot pain FAQ’s!

It’s not OK for your feet to hurt, and there are simple foot exercise solutions you can to help reduce foot pain and keep your feet healthy and fit.

Foot Pain FAQ's

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Ankle Mobility for a Healthy Hinge to Walk and Run Well

runnerImprove Your Foot Fitness to Stay Safe and Injury-Free with Better Ankle Movement

Healthy feet and ankles aren’t just for athletes…  Everybody needs to pay attention to foot fitness to stay healthy, active, and pain-free, and having a good hinge from the ankle is what helps us balance better, and push off the ground to propel the body forward when we move.

Yes, calf stretching plays a part in effective ankle hinging, but if you think about it, getting a good stretch is a side benefit of finding a good free hinge action from the ankle joint.  Using the springs on the Reformer, Tower and Chair in Pilates is a great way to free up the ankle and get your “hinge” moving well.  Pilates exercises like Footwork, Stomach Massage, Running, Tower, Monkey and even some Matwork are perfect opportunities to practice a good flexed foot!

Here is ONE Simple Secret to Improve Your Ankle Mobility for a Better Hinge:

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Put a little “Spring” in Your Step to Strengthen Your Feet

tigerThe muscles of our feet are designed somewhat like springs.    If our arches are strong and working well, there is a spring effect that we can work with to be “light on our feet,” improve balance, and more easily transfer our weight from leg to leg to propel our bodies forward through space to walk and run.  Our “springs” also work when we jump UP to move vertically if we’re playing sports like basketball, volley ball, dance, or gymnastics.

The image of Tigger in Winnie the Poo just popped into my mind!

How great does it feel to have a smile on your face, and a little “spring” in your step.  As kids, we run, jump, hop, skip and play!  But as we get older it seems these normal physical activities seem to fade and become distant memories of things we used to do, but aren’t in our vocabulary any longer.  Too many hours sitting behind a desk, poor shoe choices and lack of time spent maintaining the strength and flexibility of our feet, ankles, calves, hamstrings and perhaps whole-body. 

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Toes and Leg Pain – Is It Connected?

Getting to the Root of the Problem for Better Whole-Body Health          

Leg PainHave you ever experienced pain somewhere in your body not from an accident or a hard work out, but over time a little ache here, a bigger pain there.  It’s nothing big enough to “worry” about or to make any changes in your lifestyle or exercise program, and then… one day, suddenly it seems you’re incapacitated and unable to keep up the facade that nothing is wrong.

It’s time  to face the fact that there really is something going on that you need to pay attention to, find a solution for and take action to change so you can get your good health back.

I received this question from Wendy about toes and leg pain and thought there might be other folks out there who would be interested in my response.

Posted by Aliesa George in Alleviating Pain & Chronic Health Problems, Foot Care & Foot Fitness, Functional Movement.

Gain Ankle Strength and Heel Mobility for Better Balance

Medial / Lateral Ankle Strength &
Multi-Directional Foot Mobility

This is Part 3 in a 3-part series on Healthy Feet: Heel Mobility for Better Balance & Body Control

Stretching the calf and soleus muscles are important for your lower leg and ankle flexibility, but just doing a plain old calf stretch probably isn’t going to dramatically improve balance because it is not the flexion and extension of the ankle that needs improvement as much as the lateral side-to-side strength and support. 

What can you do to improve balance?

One of the best ways to improve your balance is to challenge the body with exercises that have you standing on one leg.  But if your feet and ankles don’t have the right amount of strength, flexibility and mobility to keep you upright, chances are simple exercises balancing on one leg may seem darn near impossible unless you’re holding onto something!  (And holding onto something for support has you using your Arms to balance more than your feet, ankles and legs.)

There are thousands of opportunities throughout the day where we have a moment to practice standing on one leg and balance.  Can you guess where your top two opportunities to practice balancing on one leg are?

  1.  Walking
  2. Climbing Stairs

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness, Running, Walking.