If you’re a dancer, then of course you would of heard the term of having “good feet”. When a dancer has “good feet” it usually means that they have a very high arch, or instep which is aesthetically pleasing from a ballet point of view. “High arches,” “low arches,” or “flat feet” are terms often used when describing feet – including dancers’ feet.
That’s why, as a dancer, it’s so important to focus on strengthening your feet. For you, your feet do more than just hold you up as you walk and run, like they do for the average person. They serve as a vital source of balance, support and propulsion, whether dancing on the stage or rehearsing in the studio.
Here are some strengthening foot tips to help reduce injury and improve mobility:
1. Routinely work on your feet during sets and be conscious of your movements. Work to engage each and every muscle in the part of the foot you’re working. For example, if you have a jump, it’s important to engage the arch and point your toes to help lift the leg higher. Engaging your toes helps elevate your leg as if it were pulling it upwards into the air.
2. Focus on good technique. For instance, if you perform a jump incorrectly and start off with a shallow plie, it’s going to impact your foot muscles and can even cause injury.
3. Reduce inflammation and improve circulation. Put The Toe Spacers on and lay down on the floor next to a wall and simply extend your legs long above you so the heels are resting comfortably against the wall. This is great practice for improving circulation and reducing inflammation in achy feet, and it will also lower your blood pressure.
4. Go barefoot outdoors. The great thing about being a dancer is that you’re able to be barefoot on the floor all day unless you’re in pointes. However even though your toes are able to move freely they’re always on even ground. Walking on uneven terrain can help improve balance and stimulates some of the 200,000 nerve endings that are in the bottom of the feet.
5. Get massages. Yes, depending on where you’re living they can get quite expensive and a dancer’s budget isn’t always the highest, but it’s vital to give your feet and legs a chance to recover. As a dancer you can enhance your dance ability, boost your health and vitality, reduce muscle soreness, prevent the risk of injury and increase your dance performance through a regular practice of self massage.
There are crazy tips out there like taping certain toes together so that they fit into shoes. Dancing is incredibly tough on the feet and do know that there are natural ways to strengthen feet to prevent injuries and support movements so that you execute clean routines.
Check out our blog posts for more dance and toe/foot strengthing articles.
THE TOE SPACER