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Exercises for Foot Drop Weakness

If you love seeing happy pets bounding about their forever homes, then you might want to consider supporting the Run for the Animals this Oct. 4 at Woolery Mill. This 5K run/walk and 1-mile dog walk helps support the Monroe Country Human Association. If foot drop interferes with your ability to lift the front of your foot and move like the spritely pup you once were, focused exercises might be able to provide some improvement.

Foot drop (also called drop foot) is a condition in which the muscles responsible for lifting the front of the foot suffer from weakness or paralysis. Certain exercises can focus on the crucial elements of strengthening these muscles and improving flexibility, helping the front of the foot clear the ground easier. Following are some sample maneuvers:

Foot and Toe Flex – Sit on the floor with legs extended in front. Flex the foot toward your body so that toes move back and the heel lifts off the ground. Hold for several seconds, then curl your toes down and stretch the foot in the opposite direction. Perform as many repetitions as you can.

Ankle Rotations – Sit in a chair with your back supported and raise a leg into the air. Slowly turn the foot inward and hold, then turn outward and hold. Repeat six times with each leg. Once this becomes easier, ankle weights could be added for more challenge.

Toe Pickup – This one can be kind of fun. Place a few marbles on the floor and try to pick them up using your toes. This can target the smaller foot muscles for conditioning.

There are even more exercises with the potential to help with drop foot, but it is best to consult with a professional before beginning any kind of serious regimen. Dr. Kevin Powers in Bloomington is happy to help you find the best and safest treatment options for your specific needs. Call our office at (812) 333-4422 to schedule an appointment and get started toward stronger mobility.

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