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Are you wearing the right size shoe? For all that our feet do for us; we don’t do much for them in return.

We cram them into tight shoes, pound them all day, and generally ignore them unless they’re giving us serious trouble. Most shoes these days don’t stretch and feet don’t shrink (they get bigger with age). There are two measurements to consider 1. ball to heel and 2. toe to heel. Both feet should be measured, go with the biggest

of all measurements. If your foot measures right at the 8 go up to 8 ½ you will notice the difference in a short time.

Also try finding a shoe that has a wider toe box. Toes should not be crowed.

Buying new shoes for exercise? If after your first workout your toe nails hurt, feet cramped or if you get blisters there is something wrong with the fit of the shoe. Hard skin is caused by friction and pressure when the bony parts of your feet rub against your shoes. If you have corns or calluses, try rubbing castor oil on the area. Over the counter medicines contain acids that destroy the tissue but do not treat the cause, sometimes wearing shoes that fit better solves the problem.

Paying attention to and correcting the way our feet connect with the earth can correct foot and ankle problems and repercussions throughout the whole body.

For example, pronated feet (roll inward from the ankle down) tend to cause knee problems and back pain.

Eversion, an outward turning of the foot affects all the bones and nerves of the feet, and in turn ankle, calf,

knee and hip. This results in the knee being thrown out of balance and then travels up the spine resulting in misplacement of our shoulders and head.

One way to think about foot stability is to think of your feet as having four corners; the big and little toes, and the outer and inner heels or maybe the image of a car with four tires or an X on the bottom of the foot. Use whichever works for you, because distributing your weight evenly across your feet is central to healthy alignment.

You may be surprised by resolving your foot problems you’ve resolved your knee, back, hip and shoulder

problems as well.

Tight calves or get Calf cramps?Make your “second heart” strong, there are a system of veins, valves and muscles in your feet and calves, it’s called the second heart because it pushes blood from your legs back to your heart.

Like the heart in your chest, you need to keep your second heart strong through exercise for it to work properly. Walking 20 to 30 minutes every day can help. Even if your heart is relatively strong, unless it has a chance to work you may be at risk. When you are sitting or standing your calves don’t have a chance to propel your blood back, it’s likely to pool overtime. Rock back and forth on your feet or flex and stretch your calf muscles at least once or twice an hour.

If you get a cramp in your calf – rub and massage the calf muscle as much as possible. If you get calf cramps set an appointment with a massage therapist or reflexologist to get calf work soon. If you are on Acid reducers such as Zanac, it can make it worse – ask your Dr. for a medication that won’t cause cramping.

Roll Away the Tension – A quick way to relax tired feet is take a couple tennis balls and roll them under your feet. Stand on a tennis ball and roll it back and forth under your foot, working the toes, the ball of the foot, the arch and the heel. Make this exercise a part of your life and your foot bones (and maybe your leg bones, hip bones, and head bone) will be forever grateful.

Here’s an exercise to ease stiffness all the way from your toes to the backs of your knees. Stand on the edge of a stair, with just your metatarsals (long bones) on the stair, holding on to something for balance, relax until you sink, then push back up gently – repeat several times. To keep your toes happy, the muscles in your toes also need exercise. Simply wiggling your toes will do or you can grab a towel with your toes.

Go Barefoot - Shoes make your feet weak, so at the end of the day, slip them off and walk around the house barefoot. Not only is it good for the muscles in your feet, it may benefit the whole body. The muscles you don’t use – you lose.

It’s been suggested that sitting in motor vehicles and offices surrounded by strong electrical fields messes up the polarity of the human body – walking on the damp grass is thought to short-circuit that and reset your body’s polarity. Walking on sand or grass not only feels great it also provides your feet with the kind of support sports-shoe manufactures aim for.

Keep your nails trimmed but don’t cut them too short.

If you get cracks on your heals the best natural treatment for this is mix three spoons of honey and one teaspoon

of sesame oil together and apply to the cracks.

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