rop foot is the inability to raise the front of your foot off of the ground. It can be caused by many things, including stroke or other neurological damage, diabetes, and cerebral palsy. This blog post contains exercises that will help you work out drop foot if it's affecting your life.
What Is Drop Foot?
A drop foot is also called foot drop, and it occurs when the muscles that lift your feet and ankles are weakened or nonfunctional. Your leg muscles can no longer lift your feet up, which causes a dragging motion while you walk. It's also possible for the toes on one of your feet to hang down toward the ground when walking or standing if you have a drop foot.
A variety of conditions like: can cause this
Motor Neuron Disease
This is one of the more common causes of foot drop. This is a neurological condition that affects the motor neurons and their ability to communicate with muscles. The result is a progressive weakness in your lower limbs, including feet and ankles.
Stroke can affect the motor neurons in your brain, which may lead to foot drop.
Spinal Cord Injury
Sometimes an injury to the spinal cord can cause a loss of function or feeling in your feet and ankles because of damage to the nerves that communicate with these areas. This is another common reason for having problems with your feet when walking.
After a polio infection, some people may experience new or worsening weakness in their lower limbs. The destruction of motor neurons causes this after previously recovering from an acute bout of poliomyelitis.
Pregnancy and Childbirth Trauma
If you have foot drop during pregnancy or childbirth, it can be caused by a variety of factors. These include damage to the nerves during labor, compression of the nerve that runs into your legs/feet at birth, or something called peroneal nerve palsy, which is when you have an injury to this important nerve in your lower leg and foot.
A drop foot can also be caused by a variety of hip problems, including fracture, dislocation, or osteoarthritis.
When you have a drop foot, it means that your ankle will not be able to hold up the rest of your lower limb when you are trying to walk. This condition can make walking difficult, and it may cause your feet to drag on the ground as you walk.
The muscles that are involved with drop foot may also feel stiff, which can make it difficult to move your feet up or down.
What Can I Do About It?
There are a number of exercises you can do for drop foot that will help strengthen the muscles in your legs and feet, so they don’t drag when you walk.
The following exercises can help improve your balance and make it easier to lift your feet as you walk:
1) Heel Slides
With this exercise, you will stand with your feet together and the tops of your shoes touching. You should then lift one heel off of the ground while keeping your foot in line with the rest of your body. Hold for a couple of seconds, lower back down, repeat on the other side. Do these slowly at first to get used to the exercise and then increase speed as you get stronger.
Check this video for other ways to do a heel slide: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OwMgEaqG-9U
2) Toe Walk
For this exercise, you will stand with your feet together and the tops of your shoes touching. You should lift one foot up in front of you while keeping your other heel on the ground, then step forward slowly. Do not allow either leg to come off contact with the floor until it is time to switch legs (you can do this one leg at a time if you need to).
Check this video for better guidelines: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-T39hlQ6i0
3) Wall Push-Ups
Another exercise you can do for drop foot is the wall push-up. With this exercise, stand facing a wall about an arm's length away with your feet shoulder-width apart and pressed against the wall. Place either one or two hands on the surface next to your hips (whatever feels most comfortable for you). Then slowly push away from the wall, extending your arms and leg. This is good for people with foot drop because it requires you to lift your foot as you push away from the wall.
See this video on how to do wall push up properly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YB0egDzsu18
3) Knee to Chest Exercise
This exercise is very simple but can have a major impact on your drop foot. Lie down on the floor and bring one knee into your chest while keeping the other leg completely straight, then switch legs. You should add more repetitions as you get stronger or hold each rep for longer if this becomes too easy.
Although this exercise is simple, it can have a major impact on your drop foot. Lie down on the floor and bring one knee into your chest while keeping the other leg completely straight, then switch legs. You should add more repetitions as you get stronger or hold each rep for longer if this becomes too easy.
Watch this knee to chest exercise:
4) Forward Leg Swing
For this exercise, you will start by standing with one hand resting on a wall for support. You should then swing your opposite leg back and forth as if trying to kick something in front of you. Repeat these swings 20 times before switching sides, holding each side for ten seconds at the top of the movement.
Check out this exercise for better results: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=naW8u72lOzI
5) Clam Exercise
Start by lying down on your side with the knees bent, feet together, and heels touching. Keep both legs straight as you raise them off of the ground a couple of inches, then lower them back to their original position before repeating this 20 times for each leg. This exercise is great because you do not need any equipment or help from anyone to complete it.
Do this for 20 repetitions on each side for better results. Your foot drop will be gone in no time!
Watch this video on how to do clam exercise at home properly: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jF6iE0shJKk
6) Single Leg Balance Exercise
This is probably the most difficult exercise on this list, but it can also be one of the best. You will need to use a wall or chair for support when you begin, then slowly raise your foot off the ground and hold yourself in balance while balancing only on one leg (the other should remain at least six inches off the ground). You can make this one harder by closing your eyes, but be sure to only do that if you are completely comfortable with your balance.
You can watch this video for more and detailed ways on how to do it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7SF7AYh2_Yw
Which Nerve Is Responsible For Foot Drop?
The posterior tibial nerve is responsible for foot drop. The nerves of the leg and foot control all movement, sensation, and stability in these areas. A problem with a single nerve can cause significant disability by limiting function or causing pain. Nerve problems that result from trauma to the leg or back are common causes of serious limitations in mobility.
Other causes may include certain tumors, poor circulation of blood to the leg and foot due to heart failure or clogged arteries, aneurysms (bulging blood vessels), arteriovenous malformations (abnormal tangles of veins and arteries in the body), infections such as shingles, Lyme disease, diabetes mellitus, and certain autoimmune diseases such as lupus and Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Can A Chiropractor Fix A Drop Foot?
Treating your drop foot using a chiropractor for drop foot is a great idea. Many patients find that they can do more than just treat their pain and relieve the problem entirely with the right treatment plan. Chiropractic care has long been known as an effective way to help people suffering from all kinds of different problems, and it is no surprise that many are able to find relief with chiropractic treatment.
It is true that exercise for drop foot is very important. There are some exercises that you can do at home to improve the condition of your feet if done properly and consistently. All these exercises provide multiple benefits, including improving balance, leg strength, knee stability, hip flexibility, ankle range of motion, and preventing further injury or damage in case any occurs during exercise.
Eating the right food and balance exercises will also help with foot drop. Certain foods and vitamins can strengthen your nervous system, decrease inflammation in the body, improve circulation and reduce the stress that may be causing the problem.