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#337149 - 07/03/06 05:49 AM Toe flexibility
Kysogkram Offline
Member

Registered: 01/01/06
Posts: 137
Loc: Denmark
Not sure if this has been covered, but I couldn't find it anywhere, so here goes:

In my style Mae geri/front kick and sometimes also Mawashi geri/round house kick is done with the ball of the foot so toe flexibility is required. It's fine when doing front kicks, however roundhouse kicks require quite a bit more flexibility in the toes, which I don't have so it often results in me hurting my toes .

I need some advice on how the stretch my toes properly. What I usually do is either just sit down and pull my toes back with my hands, or I stand up and bend my foot and apply pressure to the toes one foot at a time.

This sort of works as I'm able to push my toes back pretty far and its stretching under my foot (not sure what the correct term is ), as it should. However I also get a bit of pain in my toes which I'm not sure is supposed to happen?

Furthermore when I pull back my toes just by themselves as I would in an actual kick, they don't go back anywhere near as far as when i stretch them. And I'm not really seeing any improvement either. Perhaps I need to do some sort of toe strengthening to better be able to control my toes?

Anyways, I basically need any advice on how to improve toe flexibility, the basic goal just being able to pull my toes back far enough to do a proper roundhouse with the ball of the foot without my toes getting hurt.

Thanks in advance.
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meh.

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#337150 - 07/03/06 05:20 PM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Kysogkram]
Tezza Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/05/05
Posts: 775
Loc: Kent, U.K.
I have never really thought about toe flexibility. I have always had strange flexible toes lol.
All I can advise is doing the stretch you do but instead of using your hands to pull your toes back try without you hands as well and hold them back with just using the muscles in your toe.
The reason why they dont go as far back when you kick is the same reason why your fingers dont go as far back without using your hands to pull them back you will see they wont go as far back because you are using solely the muscles in your finger.
Hopefully this helps and sorry if it doesnt make sense.
Good luck
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#337151 - 07/03/06 05:32 PM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Tezza]
Prizewriter Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 2573
Sit in a chair facing a wall. Touch your toes against the bottom of the wall.Curl your toes up. Move your curl-up toes forward so they touch the wall. Press your curled up toes against the wall. Push your foot gently toward the wall (with your upwardly curled toes still touching the wall of course) to stretch your toes.

Wish I had a pic you show you what I mean!
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"Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food" Hippocrates.

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#337152 - 07/03/06 05:45 PM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Prizewriter]
Tezza Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/05/05
Posts: 775
Loc: Kent, U.K.
Oh yea I forgot about that. Dont worry I understand lol. You can also do this standing by a step.
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#337153 - 07/03/06 06:02 PM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Tezza]
Kysogkram Offline
Member

Registered: 01/01/06
Posts: 137
Loc: Denmark
Hey guys, thanks for answering.

Both your posts makes sense and the chair thing seems to work well. However as far as I can tell it seems there's really only one way of stretching toes (pushing them back) so however you do it doesn't matter much.

Any ideas on why I get pain in my toes when stretching them? Isn't the stretch supposed to be at the bottom of the foot? I'm certainly getting a stretch there, I'm just not understanding why the toes themselves hurt.

I guess what I need additionally is some way to strengthen my toe muscles, so I can pull them back further by themselves. Any other ideas than what Tezza posted?

Otherwise I'll just be sitting here with my toes curled back
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meh.

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#337154 - 07/04/06 11:43 AM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Kysogkram]
Tezza Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/05/05
Posts: 775
Loc: Kent, U.K.
So let me get this straight you are wondering why you get pains in your toes? Where abouts on your toes?

Its like any muscle you pull it past its limits and then it will start to hurt telling you to stop.
Hope this helps
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#337155 - 07/04/06 12:08 PM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Kysogkram]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3116
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello:

You have sufficent toe flexability to strike with the ball of the foot in a front kick, correct? Your toes are not getting smashed doing so...? Your round house kicks however toes are not lifting sufficently so that they are harmed?
The toes are like any other part of the body in one way. Persist and they should DORSIFLEX (raise up toward your shin) slowly given time.

There are all kinds of small drills you can invent yourself to raise them up. You could ask your teacher as well. Work with the toes daily, several times a day. Massage the foot, gently pull on the toes, seperate them, take the toes one at a time in small circles and them reverse the circles.

Most of us merely jamb the feet into shoes and pay absolutely zero attention to our toes unless or until there is a problem of some sort.

Consider standing normally and raising yourself slowly up onto your toes. Hold the position, and come back down, Repeat. Feels pretty good... and brings your attention to a part of the body often overlooked...

As for the pain you are getting STOP pushing the toes that far. Pain is a warning signal, too much, too far. In time perhaps, but not today. Look up "dorsiflexion" under www.google.com, and use hatha yoga as another search term. If I remember correctly www.yogajournal.com had some exercises for toe inflexability issues.

Go slowly, any small bit helps...

Jeff

This sort of works as I'm able to push my toes back pretty far and its stretching under my foot (not sure what the correct term is ), as it should. However I also get a bit of pain in my toes which I'm not sure is supposed to happen?

Furthermore when I pull back my toes just by themselves as I would in an actual kick, they don't go back anywhere near as far as when i stretch them. And I'm not really seeing any improvement either. Perhaps I need to do some sort of toe strengthening to better be able to control my toes?

Anyways, I basically need any advice on how to improve toe flexibility, the basic goal just being able to pull my toes back far enough to do a proper roundhouse with the ball of the foot without my toes getting hurt.

Thanks in advance.



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#337156 - 07/04/06 07:00 PM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Ronin1966]
Joe7987 Offline
Member

Registered: 10/26/05
Posts: 317
Loc: Orlando, FL
To strengthen your toes... I'm not sure if this was already said - Stand up on the ball of your feet; from here use the strength of your toes to pull yourself off of the balls of your feet and onto your actual toes. Lower yourself and repeat. This will help you get that strength you need. Also, check ballet sites. These dancers need quite a bit of strength in there toes to do what they do and, as funny as the idea may sound to you, it'll probably help you out.

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#337157 - 07/05/06 04:22 AM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Ronin1966]
Tezza Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 07/05/05
Posts: 775
Loc: Kent, U.K.
Great post Ronin.

Quote:

As for the pain you are getting STOP pushing the toes that far. Pain is a warning signal, too much, too far.




That was what I was trying to get across.
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#337158 - 07/06/06 12:42 AM Re: Toe flexibility [Re: Tezza]
Ronin1966 Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 04/26/02
Posts: 3116
Loc: East Coast, United States
Hello Tezza:

Too many push foolishly and injure themselves. Not because they "needed to" but they had some wrong idea they were supposed to "grin and bear it"....

Being aware and knowing what is happening and choosing to do so is far different than the "neanderthal routine" many stupidly use. Pain is bad! When it "invites" its Mother-In-Law (and all its "pain cousins" ), that's baaad and to be avoided...

You DID say it before, but it bares massive repeating in my view,

Jeff

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