5 Steps to Boost Your Foot Health (in Time for National Foot Health Awareness Month)
Did you know that the average person walks about 5,000-7,000 steps in a day? Rain or shine people everywhere are walking, jogging or racing along without a thought for what really makes that possible—their feet. The 26 bones, 33 joints and more than 100 tendons, ligaments and muscles work effortlessly to get us where we need to go and allow us to do all of the active things we love. But without the right care, you can end up suffering from conditions like plantar fasciitis, achilles tendinitis and more. So, since it’s National Foot Health Awareness Month, let’s all take a few steps to appreciate our feet for the assets they are (and focus on their health)!
Step 1: Layer Up with the Right (Toe)socks
Just like your feet are the foundation your healthy body travels upon, so are your socks! Make sure that for any activity you’re doing—whether it’s strenuous or not—you’re wearing the right socks. Look for socks, like Injinji Toesocks, that keep your feet cool and dry (no one likes a foot fungus!) with protection from blisters. If you’re active in specific sports, like running, hiking or even a gym workout, look for activity-specific versions that can help support your feet based on the sport.
Step 2: Find the Right Shoe Fit
Now that you’ve got the right socks, you should also check if your shoes are fitting your feet correctly. According to the American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society, people’s feet and shoe sizes can change over the years, so you can’t really rely on the fact that you’ve always worn a certain size. Use their guide to finding the right size shoes for your feet. Just remember, depending on the activity you’ll be performing in your shoes (and the brand of shoes), you may need to go up or down a size!
Step 3: Practice Good Foot Hygiene
Just like you practice good hygiene to keep from getting sick, you also need to focus on good foot hygiene to avoid nasty fungus growth or other skin conditions. Make sure you keep your feet clean and dry, exposing them to the air whenever possible. Fungus tends to lurk in warm, damp places, so having the right socks and shoes can also help you practice good foot hygiene. The most important hygiene tip? Make sure you inspect your feet every day. Sometimes the early signs of trouble can be subtle, but catching an issue early on can help you resolve it faster.
Step 4: Remember to Rest
Just like your muscles need a rest day in your workout routine, so do your feet! If you’ve been walking, running or even just standing more, your feet can get sore. Make sure you take the time to put your feet up and relax when you need to. You can simply prop your feet up on a cushion, or you can go a little more lux and pamper yourself with a foot soak. Try adding a lavender epsom salt to warm water, and relax with your feet in the water for about 15 minutes. The epsom salt helps reduce swelling and ease aches and pains, and the lavender scent will help relax the rest of you! It’s a win-win.
Step 5: Celebrate Your Feet
Okay, we know we’re a little biased…but aren’t feet the best? They carry us EVERYWHERE we want to go! Whether it’s up a mountain trail and through a rushing river or just to the coffee pot every morning, your feet have got you covered. So take a moment to rejoice over the greatness of feet—and don’t forget to take care of yours.