Today, Dr. Kenneth R. Wilhelm of Clifton Foot & Ankle Center is putting the focus on a relatively easy way to improve your overall health. Stretching your body is something that most people can do wherever they find themselves – at home, in a hotel room, in the office break room, or on the beach. And while you may never feel prepared to do a total Gumby impersonation, you can stretch your body to the best of your ability. And you’ll most likely improve as time goes on.

Here are 8 reasons why stretching is so great for you:

  1. It keeps your joints moving. Joints are those areas of the body where two bones connect. The muscles and tendons that make those connections tighten up when they’re at rest. Regular stretching of those structures helps keep joints limber and pain-free.
  2. It keeps you “functionally fit.” You’re able to move around with ease and perform daily functions.
  3. It keeps you from falling. Tight muscles in your feet, ankles, and calves make you more likely to fall.
  4. It increases your range of motion. Flexible joints and warm, stretched-out muscles allow freer movement throughout your body.
  5. It makes arthritic joints more flexible. Stretching fights the pain and stiffness of arthritis, especially when performed first thing in the morning.
  6. Everyone can do it so it’s a great activity to practice alone or with friends and family.
  7. It improves your posture by strengthening muscles.
  8. It can be targeted to specific muscles or muscle groups that need strengthening.

Easy ways to stretch your feet and ankles

Dr. Wilhelm recommends that you include your feet and ankles in any stretching routine. It helps keep them healthy and pain-free, especially as you age! There are numerous foot and toe stretching exercises you can perform that strengthen and help maintain flexibility of your entire lower limb area. Click here for a complete list.

Your foot health is important to us. Whenever you have pain or sustain an injury, our board-certified podiatrist is here to help. Contact us at our office in Centreville, VA, in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., at (703) 996-3000 or make an appointment online.

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