5 Foot Exercises for Building Strength & Flexibility


This guide from Gabor Shoes Ireland lays out five quick and easy exercises for your feet. Dedicating a few minutes of your workout routine to your feet will help to improve your overall foot health, improve your balance, reduce muscle soreness and stiffness and prevent toe cramps. Strong and flexible feet are also much less likely to become injured, a crucial fact when you consider that nine out of ten people suffer from some form of foot injury at some point in their life.


foot exercise


Warming Up

Before getting started, gently prepare your body for exercise by warming up. You can do this by walking around or by riding a stationary bike for a few minutes.


1. Walking

This is the best overall exercise for your feet. On average we should take about 10,000 steps daily. Walking puts your foot through its full range of motion and helps the muscles and ligaments in our feet to work stay supple and flexible.

foot exercise


2. Standing Heel Lifts

Average Time: 1-2 minutes per foot


  • Strengthens the calve muscles


  1. Stand straight with your heels together and your toes slightly apart.
  2. Press all ten toes into the floor to lift your heels.
  3. Stop before you separate your heels, lock into your ankles, or roll off any of your toes.
  4. Hold for a count of 5.
  5. Lower slowly.
  6. Repeat 5 times to start, increasing to no more than 30 times.

foot exercises


3. Pencil Pick-Ups

Average Time: 1 minute per foot



  • Strengthens toe & foot muscles


  1. Sit in a chair and place both feet in front of you.
  2. Place a pencil on the floor ahead of you within reach of your toes.
  3. Pick up the pencil by gripping it with your toes.
  4. Hold for 6 seconds.
  5. Repeat 10 times.


4. Toe Curls

Average Time: 1 minute per foot


  • Eases foot pain
  • Treats plantar fasciitis
  • Helps loosen the muscle tension in the toes and the underside of the foot
  • Improves balance & stability


  1. Place a towel under your feet to give your toes something to curl around.
  2. Plant both of your feet flat on the towel.
  3. Scrunch your toes in as tightly as you can.
  4. Gently release.
  5. Repeat 10 times.


5. Tennis Ball Roll

Average Time: 2 minutes per foot


  • Eases arch pain
  • Treats plantar fasciitis.


  1. Sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Put your foot on top of the tennis ball or a frozen bottle of water.
  3. Roll it around, massaging the bottom of your foot.
  4. Increase or decrease pressure as needed.

foot exercise

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