Working in construction requires you to be in optimal physical condition. You might have the muscles, but you will be on your feet for most of the time, and if you aren’t stretching properly, you won’t be as resilient and increase the likelihood of injuring yourself or your comrades at the workplace. So, let’s go over some of the best exercises that can strengthen your feet.
1) The Hamstring Stretch
The hamstring stretch is a low-intensive stretch that targets the hamstring tendons, the hips, and the pelvis.
You are stretching the muscle group that is responsible for bending your knees. The exercise also targets the gluteal muscles that extend your legs when you walk or run.
By doing this stretch, you improve joint flexibility, you are less likely to succumb to injuries that involve the affected muscles, and you can prevent low back pains, as well as help against Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).
You can opt for either static or dynamic stretches. Static stretches are those that are done when you hold your position for several seconds and are performed best after your workout routine. Dynamic stretches require controlled movement in order to warm the body, they are best performed before the workout.
The stretch is done by raising your foot on an elevated surface that is at least 30 cm high. Slowly bend forward and then stop when you can feel the tension behind your thighs. Hold it for 3-5 seconds and afterwards, switch legs.
2) Quadriceps Stretch
By stretching your quadriceps, you will loosen the muscles around the knee, increase flexibility and reduce the chances of getting an injury in the affected area.
First of all, find a hard surface that you can lean on for balance, ideally, it will be a wall. Afterwards, hold your right ankle with your left hand, stretch the leg behind your back and hold it for 10 seconds. Once you are done, do the same with the right hand and left ankle.
3) Big Toe Calf Raise
The big toe calf raises primarily strengthens the plantar fascia (a long ligament directly below the skin on the bottom of your feet).
It is most effectively done by standing bare feet at the edge of a stair or by placing a rolled towel directly under your big toe.
Once you’re ready with the preparations, squeeze your calves and do an ordinary calf raise and finish it off by pressing onto your big toe.
The last part is usually the most difficult one and can lead to some problems or injuries if done incorrectly. If you suffer an injury, you should contact a qualified podiatrist. Thankfully, Fairfield is known for its qualified podiatrists.
4) Leg Swinging
Leg swinging is a great and safe exercise that challenges your balance while testing your hip and ankle stability.
You do them bare feet by standing on one leg and swinging the other leg forward and backward around 20 times. Then, (without taking breaks) you swing the same leg left and right for the same amount. Afterwards, you swap your legs and repeat the whole exercise (again, without taking breaks in between).
5) Calf Stretch
Calf stretching affects the soleus muscles and Gastrocnemius. It is done in order to prevent any injuries that might affect your calves, feet, or ankles (and considering construction workers are constantly doing strenuous activities, this isn’t exactly a rare occurrence).
You do the stretch by standing close to a wall with one foot in front, and one back. Place both hands on the wall while keeping your back straight. Afterwards, lean forward to the wall and you should feel tension along your calf.
Repeat this for around 30 seconds.
6) Toe Press
The simplest exercise on this list. You improve your foot stability and strengthen your feet while improving mobility and reducing the chances of injury.
You start by pressing your big toe on the floor while trying to lift your other 4 toes up.
Hold every press for around 7 seconds and do around 13 reps for each foot.
You can do this exercise several times throughout the day.
7) Walking Lunges
Walking lunges work out your quads, hamstring, and glutes (as well as challenge your balancing).
You start with your feet together, keep your chest straightened, and lunge with your right leg until your thigh is at odds with the ground. Afterwards, push up from the ground and come back to the starting position.
Then repeat with the left leg.