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The Feet are Foundation

Oct 16th, 2012
Staff Writer

Feet are animal roots above ground.From head to toe, there is no appendage that holds more weight than the foot. And what is done in return for the work that this special organ completes on the daily? Often not enough.

According to the latest article from Yoga Journal, 7 of 10 people will suffer from podiatric problems at some point in their life. This stems from the habitual squeezing that ankles and toes endure from hours of wrapping with tight laces, from overuse and because of the typical negligence that is common in societies that have made the feet a taboo body part.

But in some circles, the feet are understood to be foundational to the human skeleton, and essential in every way. Yoga often refers to the feet as the “roots” of the body.The term seems fitting as a description of the grounding feature of long-limbed organisms.

As the base of any structure connects to the rest of the entity and acts as support, so does the foot. “I sing that song to my patients,” New York City Holistic Podiatrist Dr. Robert Cornfeld revealed in a Yoga Journal interview. The foot bone is connected to the leg bone and the leg bone to the pelvis which holds the spine: the primary axis of the brain.

This interconnectivity means that an imbalance in the feet can translate to knee, hip, and even shoulder problems. “I recommend that all my patients start yoga immediately,” Dr. Kornfeld explained. “When you treat foot problems with yoga, you end up treating back pain, hip pain, all kinds of structural problems.”

In standing poses, focus on elongating the toes and stretching the sole of the foot “like a drum”, Tias Little of Santa Fe, New Mexico’s Prajna Yoga recommends. Postures like Hero, Tree and Eagle are great for stretching and stabilizing the lower body.

These techniques plus a little attention at the roots will in turn support the trunk and limbs. And what was once blurred with the ground, not a thought in the mind (for some feet are shy), may soon in turn be the apple of your eye.