November 1, 2020

Why Strong Hands and Feet are Essential for Preventing Injuries

Can you carry all your groceries in one trip? Can you do the Monkey Bars? Can you hang from one hand? Can you spread your toes? Can you make a fist with your foot? When was the last time you did exercises to strengthen your hands? Your feet?

If these things are questionable for you there may be a great opportunity to prevent injuries in many other parts of your body.

So, your hands and your feet are the parts of your body that come in contact with the rest of the world the most, hopefully it's not your butt sitting in a chair all day long... uh, get up and move that!

With hands and feet, these are also things that get really neglected when it comes to people doing exercise, strength, training, keeping aware of their health. So I have a lot of clients that come in for a low back issue, a knee issue, an ankle issue, whatever it is. And we talk about, "let's feel this pressure in your feet." And it seems like a totally foreign concept to them.

Or we work on moving their toes. So can your toes make a fist? Can your toes spread and reach? If they can't, that's an issue. As a human, we need to be able to do that stuff for the force of moving, to be able to be distributed and spread around and move to the proper places.

So just like if I do a pushup and all the pressure goes into the outside part of my hand, okay. My elbow is going to flare out a weird way. I need to keep that pressure spread out all over my hand. And so same thing when I squat, if the pressure goes only to one part of my foot, then my shin is going to follow that way.

So it's really important for people to be aware of how important it is to have strong feet and strong hands get barefoot. If it's uncomfortable, do some conservative things like just moving and wiggling and kneading with your toes. If you heart are struggling with a hand or wrist or shoulder issues.

Work on hanging from something, holding onto something and letting some of your body weight transferred out. The one medically documented characteristic that has the strongest negative correlation against all risk factors for death is... grip strength.

Now, does that mean the grip itself is the most important?

No, but it's a measure of how physically capable are you. And so having strong hands. Prevents injuries in your wrist, in your elbow, in your shoulder and having strong feet prevents injuries in your feet, your ankles, your knees, your back, your hips, all of those types of things.

So if you've neglected, strengthening your hands, then get a rice bucket, look up rice bucket videos, hang and do the monkey bars, go with your kids to the park and, and just hang from stuff!

Get into the practice of doing simple things like moving your feet. Wiggling your toes, moving your hands, holding on to stuff. Doing some farmers carries the simple, simple thing. See if you can make a one trip in from the grocery store, each time hold all those bags. So strong hands, strong feet are going to help the health of everything else in your body.

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