Any athlete who loves his or her sport knows just how important conditioning is. Jumping into an activity without giving your body a chance to build up strength and endurance for it first is a recipe for disaster. At the very least, you won’t be able to do your best, and at the worst, you set yourself up for serious injuries. The best conditioning is tailored specifically for your sport, too. In activities like track and field, conditioning can cover a variety of exercises to hit the whole body, but it often forgets your feet. Good track and field training should prepare your feet along with the rest of your body.
Track and field conditioning includes a variety of things, all of which are designed to prepare your body for different events. Throwing events require arm and shoulder conditioning; jumping events require knee and leg conditioning; and running races requires leg and speed conditioning. For all of these, however, you need strong, stable feet.
Preparing your feet for track and field doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are a few tips to help you make sure your foundation is up to the challenges of your sport:
- Walk on your toes and heels – Walk in straight lines across a room on your toes first, keeping your heels off the ground, and then vice versa.
- Roll out your arches – Use a tennis ball or water bottle to gentle roll out and massage your outside, center, and inside arches, especially in that order.
- Work with resistance bands and balance boards – Use resistance band and balance board exercises regularly to build foot muscles.
- Stretch your feet – Gently stretch your feet and calf muscles daily to prevent them from getting too tight or overworked.