Posted on October 12th, 2020 to Our Workouts
If we are being honest, most people are either unaware or don’t think that their foot condition is important. When is the last time you saw someone at the beach flexing their feet? Understanding how you move starts with what is happening at the foot. All of us fall into three main categories, which is where we will focus our attention.
These three categories are pronation, neutral, and supination. Check out the below graphic to understand each of these foot positions.
What Is Ankle Pronation?
Pronation is a perfectly natural motion that is necessary to some extent for walking, running, and many other movements. Ideal pronation involves a slight inwards rolling of the ankle and the foot’s arch. Pronation is among the most common issues among exercise novices and fitness buffs alike. It compromises the alignment of the knees and hips, leading to discomfort or even injuries. Keep reading to learn what it looks like and how it can be fixed.
Excessive pronation is common, although many people are completely unaware that they’re vulnerable. Often, this condition is simply referred to as “flat feet.” No matter its name, this issue causes the ankle to roll into a dangerous extent.
Over Pronated Feet
Over pronated feet are more commonly referred to as flat feet. They are called flat feet because they pronate so much that the arch is virtually nonexistent and touches the floor. A majority of individuals display ankle pronation/eversion and these tendencies can lead to a host of related problems such as ACL tears, lower back injuries, and knee pain to name a few. If you have trouble driving your knees out on squats, or if your feet tend to flare in our out significantly then you are likely a pronator.
Your arches and feet can be trained like all the other muscles in your body. Instead of putting in the time and effort to fix the problem, many people take the band aid approach to their feet and use orthotics.
At Home Ankle Pronation Correction Exercises
If you suspect that you struggle with pronation, don’t worry: this problem can easily be corrected. You’ll need to commit to performing ankle and foot pronation exercises on a regular basis. Thankfully, they’re not difficult to learn or perform.
Not sure where to start? Give these ankle pronation exercises a try:
Exercise #1 – Single Leg Stand with Contralateral Loading
Why? The kettlebell can be an excellent tool to incorporate in exercises to correct pronation. With this option, for example, a kettlebell is held at the shoulder to add challenge to an otherwise simple balance.
How? First, you’ll stand on one leg, with the other raised slightly in front of you. Both feet should remain parallel. Next, bring the kettlebell to your shoulder while continuing to focus on foot, ankle, and hip placement.
You may also like: 14 Kettlebell Workouts to Try at Home
Exercise #2 – Lunge with Kettlebell Swap
Why? Another pronation exercise that makes great use of the kettlebell, this reverse lunge is also excellent for working the hamstrings and glutes. Pay close attention to your tendency to pronate, as this exercise will only prove helpful if performed with correct form.
How? To begin, hold your kettlebell on the side of the lunging leg. Step backwards into a reverse lunge, paying close attention to the alignment of your feet and ankles. Pause briefly and hold the lunge position as you pass the kettlebell beneath the front leg to your other hand. Pass the kettlebell beneath the leg again to return it to the starting side. Continue to pass the kettlebell back and forth.
Exercise #3 – Standing Toe and Shin Raises
Why? Simple and effective, these ankle pronation exercises work several muscles that are responsible for supporting the arch. They can be performed without equipment, but small weights will level up this regimen.
How? Begin by standing with your feet hip-distance apart. Your toes should face forward. If using dumbbells, hold them by your side. Slowly lift your heels and rise to the balls of your feet, paying close attention to ankle alignment. Do not allow the ankles to roll inwards. Gently return to flat feet, before allowing the toes to lift slightly off the floor.
Go Barefoot with Grip Socks
All of these exercises are best performed barefoot or in Pedestals, so you can focus on form. Practice all three several times each week, and you’ll be amazed by how quickly your strength and alignment improve. We hope you enjoy these exercises and we wish you the best of luck on your journey to strengthening your feet.