Centerworks Blog

Latest "Foot Care & Foot Fitness" Posts

The Benefits of Focusing on Flipper Toes for Pilates Reformer Footwork

Recently I focused on “Flipper Toes” with the clients in one of my Group Reformer classes and it was pretty interesting to see very experienced Pilates students with shaky legs because they were actively using their feet a little more than usual!

Footwork on the Pilates Reformer is such a basic skill that it’s easy to take it for granted, blast through the exercises as a “warm-up,”  focus on the abs and back staying close to the mat, and the pushing/pulling action of the legs.

The quicker you finish your Footwork, the faster you can get on with other more “challenging” exercises.  But Footwork done well is much more than a warm-up!  Proper, active work of the foot and toes is an important part of all 4 of the traditional Footwork exercises.  Miss out on this work at the beginning of the workout – and you’re doing your clients a disservice in setting their bodies up for correct muscle firing patterns and balanced muscle development.

It’s no secret that good health starts from the ground up!  So it’s easy to see why Joseph Pilates started the Reformer repertoire with Footwork.

These days, too many people are wearing flip-flops and strapless shoes.  This fact alone makes Pilates Footwork an even more valuable asset to your clients workout program to try and undo the damage to gait and proper foot function being created by biomechanically ruined flip-flopped feet!

“Flipper Toes” are a great concept to teach with Pilates Reformer Footwork to improve body awareness and begin retraining the toes to work well for walking & running with pain-free feet. 

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness, Pilates, Pilates Exercises, Techniques & Teaching Tips.

Barefoot Versus Shod Running: Which is Best?


Running barefoot versus wearing shoes is a HOT topic in the running community.  It seems that everyone has an opinion about what is best for the body.

Running faster, running more efficiently, running with fewer injuries, all need to be taken into consideration when determining for YOUR body what is going to be safest to keep you on your feet, and pain & injury-free, to enjoy the time you spend pounding the pavement, or off road on the trails while you’re out for a run.

Here’s an informative article that was recently published in Podiatry Today by Dr. Kevin A. Kirby, “Barefoot Versus Shod Running: Which is Best?

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RunFit Foot Fitness Kit™

Do You Love To Run? 

Are you looking for resources to help keep the muscles of your feet strong, fit, and flexible? 

Checkout the new Runfit Kit from Centerworks.com!

The Runfit Kit is filled with easy-to-use foot fitness tools and exercise resources to help you train the muscles of your ankles, arches, and toes for fit feet and fewer injuries.

 

Whether you like to run barefoot or with shoes, the resources in the Runfit Kit can help you keep your feet fit!

In a quick 5-10 minutes before or after a run, you can easily incorporate some Runfit foot-care training into your workout for healthy, happy feet.  Keep Your Feet Fit!  Get your Runfit Kit NOW!

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness, Links to Interesting Articles, Running.

Spring Shoes & Summer Sandals for Healthy, Pain-Free Feet


It’s that time of year when we’re ready to pack up our winter boots and wool socks and start showing off our feet with sexy spring shoes, strappy sandals, flip-flops, or give up shoes altogether and enjoy running through the grass, or walking on the beach barefoot.

 

Have you checked out your Spring and Summer shoe collection? 

Is what you’re planning to wear going to be helping or hurting your feet? 

Here are some tips to help you pick shoes for healthy, pain-free feet.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Foot Fitness Tips for Alignment of Your Feet, Ankles, and Heels

Alignment of the feet, ankles, & heels is important for foot fitness.  It can affect posture, functional movement, gait for walking & running, and may also be a factor for risk of injury, causing foot pain, knee pain, or even back pain!  We stand, we walk, we run, we stretch our calf muscles, but a lot can be happening at the heels that will affect body alignment, posture, functional movement, your ability to move well, and stay injury-free.  Let’s see what you notice about what your heels are doing when you rise on your toes and lower your heels.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Have You Ever Experienced Pain Under The Balls of Your Feet?

Trying to be active with foot pain is almost impossible.  Walking hurts, running is out, can’t put weight on a pedal to cycle.  Exercise comes to a screeching halt and the throbbing reminder that something’s not quite right becomes the sole focus (no pun intended).  So you sit, and you eat, and you wait…. 

Are you wondering when the foot pain will go away and what you can do to get your pain-free feet back for a normal, happy, active life?

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Walk Healthy: Improve Foot Fitness & Reduce Foot Pain

Improve Foot Fitness and Reduce Foot Pain for Better Walking Technique and Improved Health

Here are three simple foot fitness tips and foot-care exercises to help reduce foot pain and free up the ankle joint for improved mobility.  Increase calf flexibility for better gait mechanics and discover the benefits of better health with improved foot action when you walk.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Ankle Strengthening Exercises for Runners & Athletes

Regardless of your sport, ankle pain and foot problems are one of the quickest ways to end up on the sidelines instead of participating in the action.  Most of us assume that because we are exercising, our feet are getting a workout too.  And while that’s sort-of true – doing specific foot stretching and ankle strengthening exercises as a part of your training program has added value to ensure you will avoid foot pain and ankle injuries.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

Help for Plantar Fasciitis, Flat Feet, & Reducing Foot Pain

Yamuna foot savers are one of the most fabulous foot care products ever invented!  These easy to use foot fitness products can do amazing things to help reduce foot pain and improve your posture, body alignment, and health.  If you are challenged with arch pain, heel pain, flat feet, foot cramps, plantar fasciitis, or other foot problems, getting a pair of Yamuna Foot Savers and using them regularly can really help make a difference for how your feet feel.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

A Fantastic Feet Toe Stretch to Help Reduce Toe Pain and Foot Pain

Improve the Mobility of your Toes.  Activate, Lift, & Strengthen the Arch of Your Foot.  Help Improve Gait and Foot Action to Walk & Run Faster and Farther with Happy, Healthy Feet.

How flexible is your Foot?  Do your toes bend easily in each direction?  Can you stand or kneel and tuck your toes way under to be securely balanced on the balls of your feet?  How far do your toes bend the other direction to point, like a ballerina in a toe shoe?  Do you run or walk and have stiff ankles and tight muscles in your feet & toes?  Do your feet cramp up a lot and leave you hopping around with calf cramps or foot pain?  Do you have Hammer Toes that fold and buckle from the middle of the toe joints rather than bending from where the toes meet the foot? 

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.

The Importance of Pilates and Foot Fitness

The Importance of Foot FitnessThe pain in my ankles was excruciating, every step brought tears to my eyes, and I was hobbling around like a decrepit old lady instead of the teenager that I really was. The diagnosis, after x-rays and nuclear dye tests was degenerative arthritis in my ankles – at the age of only sixteen!

Wondering if this was how it was going to be for the rest of my life, I was forced to retired from my sport of competitive gymnastics and do nothing that required any pressure on my feet, so that they could hopefully heal.  This was my personal introduction to the importance of healthy feet.

Over the past twenty-six years I’ve learned a lot more about how to care for my feet, listen to my body, and as a result have had zero problems with my ankles. I’m now running three or more miles several days a week, and feel blessed and fortunate that the pain and injury I experienced as a teenager – is now only a memory.

My dance and movement background, as well as Pilates teaching experience has provided wonderful layers of insight into the benefits of exercising the feet. While I have never intended to become a “Foot Fitness Expert,” it has been rewarding to see the benefits and improvements both myself and my clients have had by increasing awareness, and gaining proper strength, flexibility and mobility of the lower leg, ankle, arches and toes.

To get the motivation we need for self-improvement, it’s helpful to:

  • Identify the problem.
  • Learn what agitates or aggravates it.
  • Learn what to do (and not to do) to solve the problem.
  • Understand the reasons WHY making a change is important.

Whether it’s for health improvement, exercise, diet or any goal you’ve got your eye on, it’s the benefit of action that’s really important and the motivating factor for learning new things. The following are questions that have been asked to me regarding Pilates and the benefits of Foot Fitness. I hope that the information in this article will be useful and inspirational for you to take some time to treat your feet, and incorporate some specific foot health improvement exercises into your weekly workout program so you can enjoy the benefits of WHOLE-Body Health.

Posted by Aliesa George in Foot Care & Foot Fitness.