A few weeks ago, I led a yoga and meditation workshop for a small group of women, ages ranging from 35-65. One of my participants, Kathy, works out at the gym 4-5 times per week. She is slim and strong. We worked through basic standing poses including the famous tree posture, a one-legged balance pose.
Kathy’s face began to grimace within 5 seconds of holding the pose. As I was about to inquire, she came out of tree and began hobbling around in pain. “I’ll tell you later” she responded to my questions.
Kathy soon confided in me that she was recovering from plantar fasciitis, a fact that she did not share on her intake questionnaire. As we spoke further, Kathy disclosed that high impact running on the treadmill too many days per week was probably the cause, according to her physician.
We tend to disconnect from the health of our feet, and attempt to “work-out” virtually every part of our body except our feet. To many of us, our feet could be invisible, when in fact we rely on them to transport us through life. Our feet root us to the earth, and we need care for them in the way any living creature deserves.
One fun and very effective way to heed the call of discomfort in our feet is through Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Ball exercises. There is nothing like rolling out the plantar fascia in every direction with the Therapy Balls to keep the soles flexible and supportive.
With Yoga Tune Up® Therapy Ball work, Kathy eventually stood tall and strong in tree pose!
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WIth narrow shoes and poor gait, most people feet need some help! These balls are a godsent!
Ever since the first time I rolled out my feet in a class a few years ago. Anytime I have any foot pain,I use my Therapy Balls and roll out my feet. I have told many people about the Therapy Balls and I have bought many as gifts. Our poor feet never get enough attention and it is important to take care of them. I travel with my Therapy Yoga Tune Up balls and roll out my feet at the end of each day.
Thanks for sharing this story, it’s a good reminder to always take care of our feet. We tend to forget about them and this drives the point home of the importance of self care and self awareness
Interesting, I never thought about how much pain someone could be in in tree pose because of plantar fasciitis but it obviously makes sense! I tell my students all the time how important it is to give their feet a break. Thanks for sharing.
I think most people out there forget about their feet until the get some kind of pain that makes walking uncomfortable or painful. I can’t imagine having to deal with Plantar Fascitis pain, as a Neuromuscular Therapist I see clients that wait to long to finally find a solution to their problem. Feet are use and abuse, it really doesn’t take much time to give some TLC to our feet when we get home from work, we can even use the therapy balls while we’re seating watching tv.
I too have had plantar fasciitis and know how helpful it is to roll them out. I love walking in soft shoes and massaging my feet on rocks! So important to love up our feet!
I have every single one of my clients role out their feet on the Yoga Tune Up Balls. (r) Another suggestion is, that I also have the take their shoes off for most of the work out and grip the floor with their toes. Shoes can be so hard on our feet and cut off circulation. Set those puppies free and feel the difference.
I too spend a lot of time on my feet and my boots aren’t always as supportive as they are protective, and I was often getting really bad foot cramps until i started scrubbing the soles of my feet with the YTU balls at least once a day. I appreciate the links provided at the end of your article, my wife really enjoys the feet and ankle work as it helps to relieve the swelling in her feet (9 months pregnant in July…) and the chart that you included with this article really helps to understand the origins of pain in PF patients.
Thanks for sharing this article on this potentially-debilitating injury. It is really exciting to have this Yoga Tune-up solution to offer as a remedy and preventative tool to my students. Thanks again!
I love the chart you included in this blog. The majority of my jobs since I started working at age 15 have required long periods of standing and I would be sometime be tempted to leave work early because of the pain in my feet. Reflexology massage is a wonderful treat to relieve the pain but it is so nice to grab my YTU balls and scrub out my soles whether it’s after a long day at work, after a day of hiking or while I’m travelling.
I’m really happy that I learned about rolling my feet on YTU balls because it made me realize that I don’t exercise one of the most important parts of my body! Since then, I wiggle my toes whenever I can, massage my feet, and use the balls to give them love. My grandmother is(was) so close in losing circulation to her foot because of her diabetes and I’ve been so afraid and stressed out over it. I asked her to use my YTU balls but it’s almost too late. She just has to recover from a surgery she had where they opened certain veins to allow blood to flow on her foot. It’s so sad and I hope I can use my knowledge to prevent this from happening to other family members including myself. Diabetes runs a lot in my family!
Bonnie – Thanks so much for this wonderful article on the feet. I have become fascinated with feet in the past several years. I have been lucky to not have had many problems with my feet but foot problems run in my family. Part of my intention for my practice is not to be able to stand of my head, or balance on my arms with my legs wrapped around my body like a pretzel, or to so the splits, it is to keep my body in shape and help prevent pain. The feet are so essential to being mobile and we were not meant to walk around in 3 inch stilettos or shoes that cram toes into a narrow toe box. Our feet were meant to walk around and go off-roading…uneven surfaces. I am now addicted to the Yoga Tune Up Therapy Balls and use them all the time to work on my feet.
I too suffer from plantar fasciitis, I am a waitress/bartender and I spend many hours on my feet on hard cement floors. It can be extremely painful!!! Not many things relieve this pain but after a long shift I look forward to coming home and rolling my feet out on my YTU balls. Whether sitting down or standing up it is one of the only ways I feel any sort of relief from the pain. Hopefully with more consistent ball rolling and paying extra attention to my feet I too will be able to do all my standing poses (and even walk) with less pain!
Pay attention to the feet? What a novel idea. I have always had issues with my feet and now have more interest in them as I help myself to heal as well as a client. Although I am not working with plantar fasciitis I feel the more information the better, and I am bound to run into someone who is. The images you have posted really help to see the hot spots of the foot, which brings a lot more clarity for me as to where this pain occurs. I think the balls feel wonderful on the feet and have this intention of prevention or healing will help me narrow my focus on this intricate area.
I totally agree with Bonnie! I walk a lot on the beach (slopped shoreline) and it’s so important for me to keep my feet healthy. Thanks for the tips and reminders of keeping my feet healthy!
I definitely forget about my feet, that is until they start hurting. I never thought about rolling them out until now. I will definitely have to try it!
The feet are so very important! They literally map out the rest of the body through Reflexology! I love the chart that you included in this post, very interesting to see where the pain effects the foot.
Great, Allyson. You are very welcome!
Bonnie, thank you for this posting. I am developing a sequence for the feet and ankles using the YTU therapy balls and believe that the soles of the feet can do wonders after being rolled out. It’s as if our feet expand in all directions on the sole of the feet and we increase our contact with the earth. I grew up dancing for many years and wish I had used these balls then. While I did roll out the soles of the feet at that time, to minimize pain and over contraction, the grip of the YTU balls specifically seems to get in deeper and create more stimulation on the skin’s surface.
Thanks for this clip. There are several people at our fitness center complaining of plantar fascitis; one in particular continues to run marathons and trains in great pain. I have taught him to roll his feet with our old/used tennis balls which helps a bit, but the size is just a bit challenging to manage with a smaller sized foot. I just ordered a LOT of balls for my classes, so can’t wait to roll some pain out of a lot of peds!
I’ve been practicing Aztec dance, or danza, once or twice a week since April and, as amazing as it is, it’s very hard on the feet. In the most basic of terms, I’m jumping around barefoot for an hour and half and it kills my already flat and sometimes pained feet. After dreaming about the therapy balls after once particularly hard practice, I listened to my body and started rolling my soles on the balls – not only did it feel good, but I’ve had sustained relief from the painful discomfort.
The YTU balls feel like heaven to my feet (and simultaneously HURT after all the running, heels, etc). This is my favorite YTU exercise by far.
I have used therapy balls for years, but have never used them on my feet! I try to actively ignore my feet but I recently took up running, and they are screaming for help. I’ll be trying the balls.
I run frequently as well and found that my therapy balls are great to relieve the pain in my feet. My therapy balls are my new best friend!
I used to have alot of pain in my feet from running…this is a great article to show how you can alleviate this. Give your feet some love!
I used to forget about the importance of my feet until they started hurting and I realized I need to take care of them. I think the balls could help a lot.