Your feet are your most valuable walking asset, so make sure that you’re taking good care of them. Purchasing the right shoes and socks is definitely a great place to start. But you’ll also want to take good care of your feet when you’re not exercising. Following are some easy ways to pamper your feet and prevent problems.
- Limit heel time (for women). High heels can contribute to back and knee problems, not to mention a variety of foot problems. Stick to heels no higher than three- quarters of an inch whenever possible.
- Put your feet up. For at least a few minutes a day, lie back with your feet propped up to reduce swelling and improve circulation.
- Go barefoot. Your feet need time to breathe and stretch out. Walking barefoot also works the muscles in your feet more than walking in shoes. However, you should limit your barefoot walking to indoor environments where you don’t have to worry about stepping on something—and also take care not to stub your toes.
- Stretch your toes. Here’s another way to counteract when you are confined in the shoes for a long time. Lace your fingers in between your toes and hold for a minute or so for each foot. Aim to do this at least once day.
- Massage your feet. To help revive tired feet, roll each one over a tennis ball or a cold or frozen water bottle. Give yourself a foot massage or enlist your partner to give you one. The rubbing and kneading will ease soreness or stiffness and increase circulation.
- Keep your toenails trimmed. This will prevent rubbing against the front of your sneakers that could cause problems.