The complexity of the human foot is greater than you would think by just looking at it. This appendage is made up of 26 bones, 33 joints, and hundreds more muscles, nerves, and ligaments. That being the case, with as much as they are abused, it is no wonder that foot pain is a common occurrence with many.
The realization that there are painful foot conditions, however, should not cause despair since there are many different treatments available to ease pain resulting from these complaints. The following are two of the most common complaints and a few exercises that can be done to improve them:
When a person's foot flattens out too much, their step becomes unstable, and the tendons that balance the toes out tend to pull to compensate, resulting in the great toe arching. If not treated this position can become ridged, preventing the toe from being able to straighten out as the person walks. There are several exercises that a person can do to help improve the malady.
Toe crunches can be done by sitting in a chair, without socks on, and placing a towel on the floor with the top half of the symptomatic foot placed on it. While keeping the heel on the ground the person then crunches the towel up, and releases it, with their toes. This should be repeated 10-12 times.
Another useful exercise is the squeeze. From a seated position the person places their foot on the opposite thigh, slide their splayed fingers between their toes, and squeeze the toes together. If it is too painful to do them all at once, then they can be done one or two at-a-time until, incrementally, all of them can be done at the same time.
A common injury from sports, or other activities that require a person to put their weight on the ball of their foot, it causes the tendon that runs under the joint at the base of the great toe (the toe that bears the most weight) to strain, resulting in it becoming hyperextended. The toe is then tender and inflamed, making it painful when it carries weight as the person walks.
The treatments normally recommended for this condition is icing, resting the toe, and taking anti-inflammatory medication.
Tennis Ball Massage is also recommended for turf toe. The person does this by sitting down and placing the injured foot on the tennis ball, and rolling it in all directions, paying particular attention to tender spots.
Generally, taping the great toe and putting a firm insert in shoes helps the toe to heal and prevents the injury form recurring.
An exercise called Short Foot is also beneficial for turf toe, and is done by the person sitting in a chair with their foot flat on the ground. Then, they lift the arch of the foot up, without allowing their toes to curl up or the foot to roll to the outside. This should be held for 5 seconds, released, and repeated until tired.
Some other foot complaints are bunions, heel pain, plantar fasciitis, and complications resulting from diabetes. A little research will come up with quite a few exercises and other treatments that are beneficial for these ailments as well.