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By Crofton Podiatry
February 18, 2019
Category: exercise
Tags: achilles tendonitis   stretching   yoga   exercise   injury  

Are you one of those people who easily roll your ankles? Or maybe you’ve been feeling some tightness in the Achilles tendon (Achilles tendonitis) since you started a more intense workout. Maybe you want to get stronger ankles to protect from injury in a contact sport.

There’s no bad reason or time to strengthen and continue strengthening your ankles. By increasing strength, flexibility, and balance in the ankles, you can protect yourself from injuries. What’s a great way to improve your ankle health? Yoga!

Here are some poses you can incorporate into your stretching and strengthening routines (or just while you watch TV!):

[Please note: if this is your first time doing yoga, it’s best to find a teacher who can help you correctly practice these poses. For those who have practiced yoga, take your time with these poses and never put yourself in a position of pain to realize these poses.]

  • Lotus – Sit cross-legged. The ultimate goal of lotus is to sit cross-legged, but with the ankles over the thighs, with the soles of the feet facing upward. Work your way up to that, first starting with a comfortable cross-legged position, then bringing one leg up and over, and then eventually, the other leg crossed over as well.
  • Downward-facing dog – Get all your hands and knees, then push your butt up and back so that you end up on your hands and feet. Your head comes down between your straight arms, so that your arms are near your biceps. You should feel a stretch in your arms, shoulders, and down the back of your legs. Try to press down with each heel, further stretching the backs of your ankles.
  • Warrior poses – Warrior 1 and 2 are both great for ankle flexibility and strength because your back foot is turned at an angle. As you lunge to get into the position, your back feet are stretching the ankles. Be sure to do each pose on each foot.
  • Tree pose – This balancing act is a sure fire way to get your ankles to balance and strengthen. Try the variations as your balance improves.
  • Garland pose – This low squatting position is not comfortable for everyone, but it’s one you can work toward. You might start squatting on tip toes, but work your way to having your heels touch the ground to work strength and balance.
  • Hero pose – As you sit in this pose, the tops of your ankles are being stretched out. Breathe and allow them to release the tension in your soft tissues in your feet, ankles, and shins.

If you have any issues with some of these poses, or notice pain while trying any exercise, make an appointment with our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll. He will assess your feet and find the appropriate treatments to get you back to being active. Call Crofton Podiatry at (410) 721-4505, which provides services to Crofton, Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD areas. 

By Crofton Podiatry
February 13, 2019
Category: Pregnant footcare
Tags: swelling   exercise   pregnancy   orthotic  

Are you growing a little one in your belly? Congratulations!

It’s incredible how the body knows to make changes to not only support the weight of the growing baby but also to help prepare for the birthing process. During pregnancy, the heart rate increases, blood flow increases, and soft tissues and bones stretch and shift to make room. As a result of these changes, the mother-to-be’s body can experience a lot of symptoms, like ligament pain, back aches, and swelling hands and feet.

For the feet in particular, here are some things that you can expect (although each woman’s pregnancy can be different):

  • Swelling – As the pregnancy continues, the body might retain more fluid to help become more malleable as needed. The feet can suffer the most obvious swelling because, being the farthest away from the heart, it has a more difficult time returning fluids to the top half of the body. When the baby is larger in the belly, it can physically be the cause of slower circulation back to the top half of the body. Exercise and elevating the feet can help!
  • Pins-and-Needles/Tingling – When there is increased swelling, your nerves might become compressed, and blood flow might be constricted. These can cause you to have a tingling or pins-and-needles sensation. This can be felt more if you’ve been standing all day or if your feet start to swell while you are exercising. Be sure that your shoes are not too tight.
  • Pressure Point and Joint Pain – Certain parts of the feet that experience more pressure can be more sensitive to aches and pains. Elevate the feet and rest them whenever you are sitting to help them recover.
  • Flattened arches – The extra weight that you carry, especially toward the end of the 2nd trimester, and in the 3rd trimester can cause your arches to become stretched out. They can become flattened as the feet work harder to support the weight gain. Wear supportive shoes and/or use orthotic inserts to help reduce pain along the bottom of the feet.

If you are experiencing moderate to severe pain in your feet during pregnancy, see our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll to help you figure out the best solution. Pay special attention to any uneven swelling in the legs or feet, as this can indicate an issue with blood clots. To make an appointment, call Crofton Podiatry at (410) 721-4505, which provides services to Crofton, Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie, MD areas.

By Crofton Podiatry
March 24, 2017
Category: Foot Care Tips
Tags: yoga   push ups   exercise   ankle injury   foot injury  

The last thing we usually want to do after a foot or ankle injury is to be active and exercise. Or maybe there are some that would be itching to get back in the game. Regardless of what your attitude may be, it is important that you find ways to stay active and healthy. It will improve circulation and promote healing too.  

Your normal routine for exercise might include exercises that use your feet, so to help you stay on target, we’d like to suggest a few exercise alternatives that you can do when you have an injured foot or ankle. Consult your doctor to make sure that these exercises are okay for you to do.

Cardiovascular Workouts: Most people will think of running and the elliptical, but why not try swimming, rowing, and cycling (if the injury allows you to do so)? These exercises put minimal strain on the feet while working your heart out – literally!

Ab/Core Workouts: Many workouts involving your abs can be done on the floor, with no use of the feet. Crunches, “beach chairs”, hanging leg raises, and side-to-side oblique toe touches can all work out the core.

Upper Body Workouts: You can do many upper body workouts sitting with free weights and on workout machines. Work your biceps, triceps, and lats. You can also do pull ups – use a step stool to get up and down gently.

Lower Body Workouts: Use machines to do leg curls and leg extensions to exercise your quads and hamstrings without straining your feet or ankles.

Push Ups: Work on your push up game – if you only have one side injured, put it on top of the other foot while you do your push ups. You can also modify them by going on your knees instead of your feet.

Yoga: There are some yoga poses you can do that do not involve hardcore use of your feet or ankles. Practice some balancing poses (on the uninjured foot) and core strengthening poses.

It is important to remember that pain should not be a part of your workout. If any part of your body hurts or shifts to compensate for the injured foot, you may overstrain the uninjured leg. It is best to find another exercise instead.

Do you have an injury or need guidance on exercises you can do with your injury? Make an appointment with our board-certified podiatrist, Dr. Brad Toll at Crofton Podiatry by calling (410) 721-4505. Our team is ready to assist you at our Crofton, MD office, which also serves the surrounding Gambrills, Odenton, and Bowie areas.

 




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Podiatrist - Crofton, Crofton Podiatry, 2411 Crofton Lane, Suite 25, Crofton MD, 21114 (410) 721-4505