Sore Feet? How Rolling Them Out Could Save Your Life.
If the eyes are the window to your soul the feet are the window to your brain. There are 3 things that control our balance (proprioception). The eyes, the brain and the feet. Did you know your feet have up to 200,000 nerve receptors? Which is second only to your hands.
Whenever you get sore feet, the pain receptors in your feet switch off. It places extra pressure on the eyes and brain to control balance. When the small muscles in your feet aren’t working as well as they should they can also lead to toe pain, plantar fasciitis, and calf pain, and can manifest into lower back pain due to altered walking patterns. That is why it is so important to roll your feet daily.
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Why Do You Get Sore Feet?
Whenever you roll your ankle or injury your lower limb, nerve receptors switch off and the small intrinsic (muscles where both attachments are in the foot) go on holiday. These small muscles are typically the muscle that we use for proprioception and balance. When the intrinsic muscles switch off it leaves the extrinsic (muscles with an attachment outside the foot) muscle at the front and side of the shin to take over the role of proprioception.
The Reason why your intrinsic muscles switch off or get lazy, all stems back to when you have rolled your ankle. The body naturally wants to protect itself from pain and danger. When you injure your foot the small feet muscle aggravate the injury and brain.
So the brain switches them off so that they can’t annoy it anymore. If you don’t switch them back on after your pain has resolved they will continue on their holiday and tag along for the ride.
The larger extrinsic muscles of the calf are already the workhorses that allow us to move and stay upright. Now they have a whole heap of extra work thrust upon them. How angry do you get when you have to do more work just because someone else isn’t pulling their weight? No wonder you get tightness now at the front and side of the shin bone as well as the calf. This is the Larger muscles way of screaming out for help.
A Simple Test
To check how well your intrinsic foot muscles are working, stand on one foot and then close your eyes. If you can’t stand on 1 leg with your eyes closed for more than 30 seconds, you need to wake up those intrinsic muscles.
Rolling Out Your Feet:
To wake tired and sore feet up you need to reintroduce no painful or non-threatening stimuli back into the brain. Enter the golf ball. By Rolling out the feet you are sending signals back to the brain via the feet. They tell the brain it is no longer injured and can go back to normal functioning again. When the brain no longer perceives threat in using these small muscles it puts them back to work, which helps the larger muscles out and restores harmony in the body.
But How Will This Save Your Life?
As you age you naturally lose your sensation to touch and feel. By rolling out your feet and improving your balance it will reduce your risk of falls and injuries as you move into your twilight years. It will also help with toe pain, plantar fasciitis, and calf pain, and can prevent lower back pain in the immediate future if you can’t wait that long to see the benefits.
Check out our video below on how to roll out your feet to increase the sensory information they send back to your brain.
Then once your feet are feeling all loosey-goosey why not check out Why Your Stiff Big Toe Is Connected To Your Sore Back on our favourite foot strengthening routine.