The Heat Is On! Summer Feet—Gotta Love ’em

Kathleen Ismael

Kathleen Ismael, Reflexology Practitioner, IronOaks Fitness Center

Our feet carry the weight of our entire body every day with every step we take. They can quickly become dry, tired, swollen, and sore. Our feet work hard all day for us, and foot care is essential and can be relaxing.

Our feet need to be pampered just like our face. Here are a few tips and sweet treats to show your feet that you care:

Elevate your feet whenever possible to help circulation, reduce swelling, and aid in stress recovery.

Wiggle your toes to stimulate circulation. Our feet are at the end of the line and can use a little help keeping blood circulating back up through the feet and legs.

Draw your name in the air with your toes to add motion to your feet and ankles.

Roll your feet over a cool or frozen water bottle or a ball to massage the soles of your feet and to invigorate blood vessels and nerves. There are 7,000 nerve endings on the bottoms of our feet, and each one loves special attention.

Arizona heat and dusty streets can cause severe dryness, cracking heels, and flakey soles, which can also become very painful. But there is hope! Soak your feet in tepid or warm water as you are relaxing, reading, or watching TV.

Add Epsom salts to release tension and promote additional softening. Essential oils such as lavender, lemongrass, or tea tree oil will help. A little baking soda, vinegar, or olive oil also works well in your foot bath.

Massaging oil or Vaseline into your feet before bed and wearing a protective sock is very soothing and effective for dry, sore feet. Coconut oil will help heal and soften your feet, and you will think you are at the beach!

To remove dry skin on heels, use a pumice stone or a foot file. Try this while your feet are at their driest, before your shower. This may remove more dry skin than a moist exfoliation. You may also follow exfoliation with a salt or sugar scrub before moistening to help soften dry skin.

Reflexology treats the feet to relaxation and promotes increased circulation to feet, legs, and the entire body while increasing oxygen and nutrients to the cells. Reflex points on the feet and hands correspond to every organ and system in the body. Purposeful pressure to each reflex point causes physiological changes in the body, enhancing circulation, promoting balance and healing, as well as an overall state of well-being.

Treat your feet well. They will thank you for it!