May 6, 2014

How Yoga Has Changed My Feet

When I first started yoga in 2001 my feet were painful, my toes twisted and they had little flexibility. I remember at the time meeting a man and admiring the straightness of his toes and the space between them in his flipflops. He told me, "it is from practicing yoga." I have an unusually long big toe on each foot and as a child I was ashamed of my feet and wished that I could get the big toes shortened. When barefoot at camp other kids would point and laugh at my feet.

Adding insult to injury, my feet always hurt and the toes overlapped each other so I had to use cotton balls and band-aids to straighten them. Even more frustrating was that I could not bend my toes. As I have practiced yoga the flexibility of my toes has increased and the pain subsided. This has been accomplished through standing on my toes, squatting, pointing and flexing them, and using my full foot and every toe in each asana. My balance has improved in standing poses and I bring this expansion of flexibility and movement to my full posture in yoga, when working and in my leisure activities.