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Foot Drop Exercises

by
author image Jessica McCahon
Jessica began her writing career in 1995 and is Senior Editor at a London communications agency, where she writes and edits corporate publications covering health, I.T., banking and finance. Jessica has also written for consumer magazines including "Cosmopolitan" and travel, home/lifestyle and bridal titles. Jessica holds a Bachelor of Arts in English literature and journalism from the University of Queensland.
Foot Drop Exercises
A woman is getting her feet and legs stretched. Photo Credit Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images

Overview

Foot drop is a condition that makes it difficult to lift the front part of the foot, which often causes it to drag and lead to pain or discomfort when walking. The condition is caused by weakness in the muscles of the ankle and on the top of the foot, which can be brought on by a temporary or more long-term neurological or anatomical disorder. The Cochrane Collaboration--an international online resource to help make well-informed decisions about health care--proposes that certain exercises to strengthen the foot and ankle muscles and increase flexibility can improve the functioning of the affected foot in some cases. However, it is important that you seek medical advice for this condition before starting any form of treatment or rehabilitation.

Ankle Rotation

Sit up straight with your back supported by the chair and raise one leg in the air, says Osteopathclinic.com. Slowly turn your foot inward as far as you can and hold for a few seconds then turn it outward and hold. Repeat six times on both legs. Osteopathclinic.com suggests adding ankle weights to further improve muscle strength. You can also do full ankle rotations, six times clockwise and then anti-clockwise, on both legs.

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Toe-to-Heel Rock

Osteopathclinic.com says to stand with your hands on a table or the wall for support and rise up on your toes. Hold this position for about 5 seconds then lower your heels and rock back on them so your toes are in the air and you feel a stretch in your calf muscles. Hold this position for 6 seconds then repeat the entire sequence six times.

Toe Co-ordination Test

Fitness magazine, Ayushveda.com, says to place a few marbles on the floor and try to pick them up with your toes. This will help to improve your dexterity and the strength of the small muscles in your feet.

Strengthen and Stretch

Sit on the floor with your legs straight out in front of you then flex your foot so your toes move towards your body and your heels lift off the ground, says Ayushveda.com. Hold for about 5 seconds then stretch your foot in the opposite direction and curl tour toes under as tightly as you can. Hold for another 5 seconds and repeat the full range of movement as many times as you can.

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References

Demand Media