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Finding Balance begins with the Feet

As we journey through Spring heading towards Summer doing more activities outdoors, we may begin finding balance can be challenging, yet so beneficial. Balance can mean so many things. But regardless, if we are considering balance from a physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual content, it all comes back to being grounded and centered.

For this post let's consider balance from a physical standpoint. What do we need to have good balance? Many are under the impression balance is all about leg strength. While this is helpful, it truly isn't the most important aspect. The legs must also be flexible, correctly aligned, and free of tension points. Ultimately a strong yet flexible core, spine, and foundation (feet) are going to benefit our balance the most.

So let us start by concentrating on the feet.

26 Bones

32 Joints

56 Ligaments

38 muscles

7000 proprioceptors (spatial awareness)

WOW!! With all this complexity wouldn't you say our feet are pretty important? Yet how many workout their feet or even give their feet the same amount of attention as the rest of the body? Is it because we can cover them up? and whoever looks at someone and says "Nice feet you have there."

We not only neglect our feet, but we stifle their ability to work correctly for us in sensory deprivation devices (shoes) that constrict and deprive them of feeling, mobility, and expansion.

The feet and toes are essential elements to our movement. They connect us to the earth and are our body's foundation. Just as a foundation of a building must be stable to support the structure above, the feet must be balanced and sturdy to support the legs, spine, arms, and head. Yet at the same time, they need to be mobile and flexible, to bear and propel the weight of the body during walking. So if our base is weak and unstable, this will appear up through the body as misalignments. When a foot goes out of alignment the ankle, knee, pelvis, and spine follow.

Analyzing the way we stand, walk, run and sit helps determine the cause of misalignment, which is most likely the culprit of pain. Finding and correcting the misalignment usually relieves the pain. And ultimately when we are aligned we have better balance. In our next post we'll talk about how our feet being grounded translates into the spine for it to come to play in our overall balance.

Foot Check and basic release work

~ Standing barefoot, take inventory of the weight on the feet. Notice how they feel on the ground the parts that sit heavier, or lighter, areas that grip the ground, and how they feel in general. Then scan the rest of the body as you shift back and forth on feet noticing areas of tension, pain, and low mobility

~ Next use the heat to soften the tissue to create less resistance and more mobility. Take note again of any areas that may feel more tense or resistant to mobility.

~ Now get yourself a massage ball or broken in a tennis ball, Roll the entire foot noticing any tight areas

This is a great start to awaking and releasing the foot for better proprioception and balance.

If you know you have some chronic foot issues: PAIN, Plantar Fascia, bunions, hammertoes, unsteadiness, fallen arches, or foot weakness to name a few. Join us for our Foot Mentoring Course:

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