Foot Mobility, Range of Motion and Flexibilty

Foot pain can result from lack of mobility and certain types of footwear! The amount of time spent on your feet, walking around downtown Toronto, to work and home can add up!  First off let’s start by defining what the difference between range of motion and flexibility!

Range of motion is the available amount of movement of a joint. Flexibility refers to muscles, tendons and connective tissue’s ability to elongate within that range of motion. Range of motion improvement mostly comes from stretching and manual movement of the soft tissue. Massage, active release therapy, soft tissue release, foam rolling, trigger point and cupping are a few examples!  

Move it or lost it as they say! Well it is true, we lose our range of motion by being injured, from surgery, disuse or by not stretching. For a lot of our Toronto people, we spend a lot of our time sitting commuting to the office, sitting while at the office, or standing if you have a stand up desk. Our busy lives make it easy to forget the importance of stretching. Making a little stretching routine into a habit can make big benefits for your foot health! It can help prevent, plantar fasciitis , Achilles tenondonitis and keeping those toes mobile can help improve pain in pre-exiting joint pathologies.

Here are a couple tips on stretching and mobility :

The body responds to stretches much better after they are warmed up. Collagen is a component in our connective tissue and it does not stretch as well at body temperature and responds to stretching better after heat, such as a warm bath or sauna. 

It is best to hold your stretch for a longer duration to yield most benefits from stretching. This means 30 seconds to 1 min. Dynamic stretching is good to perform before activity for mobility and injury prevention. This is where you gently stretch the muscle for a short period of time, repeating a few times. Joints of the feet can benefit from mobilization if they have been injured. 

Another tip is practicing a wind down routine before bed where you can combine upper and lower body stretching before bed. It is proven to help activate the parasympathetic nervous system, especially when combined with foam rolling. Foam rolling before stretching is another good tip your downtown Toronto Chiropodist has to offer!

Our precious feet, which are always confined in shoes, can easily be susceptible to injury. That is because footwear, especially narrow dress shoes, can immobilize our feet making them susceptible to joint immobility and foot pain. Imagine what your hands would be like if you always wore mitts!

If you have any questions on foot mobility, footwear advice or foot pain, your Downtown Toronto Chiropodist, who concentrates on sports medicine and injury prevention would love to help!

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