While your overall running technique (posture, cadence etc…) dictates where and how the foot lands, and therefore the loading experienced, your foot and ankle biomechanics and proprioception determine how effectively this loading occurs.
Poor biomechanics and proprioception around the foot and ankle can result in unwanted compensatory movements. These compensatory movements often lead to injury with time and repetition.
Jay Dicharry, MPT has produced the video below to show some great self assessment and treatment techniques to promote foot health in runners.Last updated on March 2nd, 2021.
Hi James, fantastic and informative video on the feet, thank you. I’m a yoga instructor specialising in Yoga for Runners and Cyclists (and run and cycle myself) I teach variations of these co-ordination/mobility exercises (‘Toe Yoga’) with the running club I work with. Strong, mobile feet are fundamental in yoga and many yoga foot techniques are great for runners.
My issue is that while doing these type of exercises – and especially stretching the plantar fascia – one of two runners always suffer from cramp. We begin the session right after they have run (average eight miles on pavement) so I’m wondering if the foot stretches are too much too soon?
I try to warm up the feet gradually (e.g pointing and flexing, ankle rotations etc before moving on to deeper foot stretches (e.g all fours, shifting on to the balls of the feet and gradually sitting back towards the heels) but perhaps these stretches are too deep. I was interested in the section in the video on massage – perhaps this should preceed stretching?
Any advice gratefully received!
A very informative and accessible video. I’ve incorporated some of these strengthening and stretching in my work with more elderly clients in the past with some very positive results; contributing to fall prevention and consequently enhanced confidence. Balance and mobility have far reaching effects.
Thanks James for a timely reminder of some essential work to focus on.
Erica Spencer Green
Thanks for the video. I am keen to incorporate the FHB exercise as part of my falls prevention intrinsic musculature strengthening programme also. Initial response to massaging the plantar foot [with a spiky ball] for a minute improved the heel lunge results by up to a centimetre.