By Jennifer Dixon MBA ERYT 500
Have you ever suffered from foot pain? Oh man, it’s the pits. Seriously, every step is uncomfortable and there’s no way to ignore how uncomfortable things are because every single step, you feel it! Plus, very little that makes things feel better. Of course, wearing comfortable, supportive shoes helps and walking on the soft cushy ground also helps, and the obvious here–not walking helps, but that’s clearly not an option all the time. Did you know that yoga can help with foot pain as well? Big disclaimer here, I’m not a doctor, nurse, physical therapist–I’m simply a huge yoga advocate and I want to share a few tools I have used to help me find some relief for the foot pain I started experiencing postpartum.
When my son was about a month old, I was waking up to go get something in the middle of the night (oh how I do NOT miss those round the clock feedings) when I stepped out of bed, I almost doubled over in an very unexpected amount of pain coming from the bottom of my feet. I am talking — I thought I was walking on very dull, but sturdy knife blades. I let out a little welp and my husband, snoring blissfully never even moved. (big eye roll here on how unfair the 24/7 nursing is!!) –but I digress
This pain persisted and in fact, got worse. Turns out, another not so frequently talked about course d
uring the postpartum journey can be foot pain, or in my case, Postpartum Plantar Fasciitis. Those dull but sturdy knives in the bottom of my feet were caused by the relaxins that were pumped throughout the body during pregnancy and beyond causing the ligaments to get inflamed at the bottom of my feet just in time for me to be lugging around a butterball and his sister. It is AWESOME.
When it became apparent that the foot pain wasn’t going to go away right away, I bought new shoes (my new favorite pair of shoes are called Oofos, they are amazing) and then I did what any other Yoga teacher would do–I turned to the practice to see if there was anything it could do to help.
Yoga for Foot Pain
Yoga for specific areas of the body is not uncommon. We have several poses that help to strengthen, tone
, lengthen, etc various parts of the body. Yoga is fabulous for helping the body to move into its full range of motion, and sometimes the focused awareness and attention to the breath while these poses can be nothing short of amazing. Yoga, after all, is a full body, mind, soul marriage to help us get and stay healthy, so it makes sense to practice yoga with an intention to help even foot pain.
3 Yoga Poses for Foot Pain
My foot pain basically starts in my heels and went down the entire length of the sole of my foot. Sometimes, it shootsup into my ankles. This made me think I should stretch the ankles and the feet. Plus, while sitting in one of the poses, it affords me the opportunity for a little self-massage, so that is pretty nice. Here are 3 poses I love to use to help with foot pain.
- Cobbler’s Pose (Baddha Konasana) –this is my favorite because it allows for a little self-massage. It opens the hips and the outsides of the legs and ankles. When you open the feet up, it also helps create mobility in the ankles and even into the achilles which can be very very tight on people. Check out the linked Youtube video for pointers.
- Hero’s Pose (Virasana) — this is one of my LEAST favorite poses. As an ex-runner, my knees aren’t exactly thrilled to be stretched, but that means I NEED to do it. This pose also stretches the quads, ankles and the tops of the feet. It can be very intense in the knees, so watch the video to see how you can modify for your body and its special needs.
- Toe Squat, or as I like to call it, Toe Screamers — Ok, there is a reason this pose is called Toe Screamers–because your
feet–all the way down to your toes, they will be screaming! This pose also stretches your quads, but you probably won’t be thinking about that stretch because the bottoms of your feet are being stretched so much. Theyoutube video we have will show you all the many ways you can include this fabulous stretch into your practice, regardless of how much you practice regularly.
(We will continue to grow and improve our youtube videos -we just got a new super awesome hi-tech microphone which I am super excited about– so be sure to follow us to stay up to date on everything that’s coming out to help you live a life that Thrives!)
In addition to the above yoga poses, I also highly recommend seeking Acupuncture treatments. I love our very own Jamie Jackson L.ac from The Mi Lu Center who will be sharing our new yoga space with us so now you can get your yoga AND acupuncture all in one place! If you have never tried acupuncture, I highly recommend the practice and Jamie in particular–it’s an amazing, non-invasive way to treat basically everything from aches and pains, to serious health issues, and Jamie is actually th
e only certified acupuncturist that can help with facial rejuvenation. You guys, acupuncture is AWESOME!
I hope that you enjoyed learning a little about how you can use yoga to help relieve some foot pain, and I hope that it helps you if you’re experiencing discomfort in your feet. I totally know how uncomfortable it is to have foot pain, and I hope together, we can practice and be well. If you have any questions about yoga and relieving foot pain, don’t hesitate to ask me. I’m available via email at firstname.lastname@example.org