Foreword...iv Introduction...v 1 Welcome to...Your Foot How much do you know about your own anatomy? Did you know that you should be able to lift each toe by itself? Can you? If not, the basics of foot motion will be a fun ride! 2 Your Shoes...a Map The parts of a shoe go beyond the latest style. By learning to identify four main characteristics, you can make smart choices when it comes to improving your outfit, and your foot health. 3 Where Do Your Feet Stand? Any ballerinas out there walking around with their feet turned out? Why do our gait patterns differ so greatly from person to person, but tend to be the same within a family. Hint:It's not genetic! 4 Take a Stand Against Your Mother's Bunion! Even though bunions tend to run in a family, their appearance in the family tree has a lot more to do with the way you learned to move your body and the footwear you are choosing to wear, as opposed to flaws in your tissue. Find a solution here! 5 Shoe Science What is it about a shoe, really, that limits foot health? Turns out, the four main parts of a shoe each have particular qualities that can increase the development of common ailments like hammer toes, plantar fasciitis, bunions...just to name a few! 6 The Foot Bone is Connected to the Hip Bone Sometimes foot pain is created much higher than you realize. The way we stand can load tissues in the wrong place, causing them to wear out before their time. Do you wear your hips out in front of you? That's a good place to start looking for likely culprits! 7 Women, Undermining Women's Health Is the high heel really that bad? Really? What about the research? If a shoe was implicated in ailments of the foot, knee, or spine, wouldn't it be on the front of every newspaper? Well, the research is showing something, and frankly, no one is talking! 8 The Foot Gym Everyone knows they are supposed to exercise, but few of us know what to do with the muscles in the foot...and there are a LOT of them down there. This chapter offers a simple, easy to follow program that will help you restore function to the under-used muscles in the feet as well as increase circulation to the tight, over-stressed tissues of the lower leg. 9 Taking the Next (First) Step Do health feet require a complete closet makeover? Am I going to be banned from cute shoes forever? How do I fit more exercise into my busy day when I can barely handle what is currently on my plate? Find those answers here. 10 Guidelines, Recommendations, and Frequently Asked Questions What if you don't have foot pain, but want to prevent it? What if you want to optimize foot development in your friends and family? Does footwear matter during pregnancy, childhood, and in later years? Included here are guidelines on footwear for various ages and stages in life. Come find out what is best for your (or your family's) feet! Exercise & Positions to Keep Healthy Feet Sheet Appendix References
Biomechanist Katy Bowman, MS, has become a leading voice for the science of wellness. The creator and talent behind the Aligned and Well(TM) DVD program, the Director of the Restorative Exercise Institute, and the creator of the Restorative Exercise(TM) DVD kits for Gaiam, Bowman's goal is to educate the public about correct exercise prescription, traditional movement, and how modern living impacts the human machine. Long before becoming a international health celebrity, Bowman opened a small studio - now a very large institute - utilizing her studies in biomechanics and kinesiology to design safe exercise programs for injured or post-rehab patients. Dedicated to the teaching the ABCs of movement, she developed a reputation for achieving unprecedented results in pain reduction, increased bone density, and improved metabolic health. She is a regular contributor and expert for national health, fitness, and wellness publications and TV segments.
"In Every Woman's Guide to Foot Pain Relief, Ms. Bowman skillfully blends scientific research with everyday application in an understandable and entertaining format. She shares abundant advice for overall health. Read it and apply it! Your feet, and whole body, will say 'thank you.'" -- William C. Whiting, Ph.D., author of Biomechanics of Musculoskeletal Injury and Dynatomy: Dynamic Human Anatomy "From the simplicity of finding the right shoe fit to the complexity of the interaction of the dozens of muscles, tendons and bones of the human foot, Katy Bowman's Every Woman's Guide to Foot Pain Relief addresses the issues that face today's woman from the ankles down. Writing in an easy, user-friendly manner, she brings forward the problems that are seen daily, explanations of why they are occurring, and simple yet productive approaches to solutions and preventions - all to finally dispel the myth that 'Feet are supposed to hurt!'" --David B. Alper, DPM, podiatrist and past-president of the Massachusetts Podiatric Medical Society "[Bowman] sensibly helps readers to recognize the consequences of our conscious and unconscious foot behavior by offering direct, accessible and effective foot solutions that anyone can adopt and incorporate with their private clients, group classes and personal self-care." --Jill Miller, creator of Yoga Tune Up(R) "Katy Bowman's effort is breezy and informal about anatomy and biomechanics, but bright and informative about 'foot gym' -- what to do to restore movement health and 'under-standing' in those poor souls still banging their heels and jamming their toes into the sensory deprivation chambers we call shoes." --Thomas Myers, author of Anatomy Trains and director of Kinesis, Inc. "Katy Bowman's book is an honest examination and careful explanation of what women as a culture have done to our feet. This is helpful to anyone suffering from foot (and knee and hip) pain who is interested in the root of the problem and motivated to do simple exercises and postural adjustments to fix it. While anatomy can be overly-complex, Bowman does a great job making the science very accessible, and the solutions straightforward." -Esther Gokhale, author of 8 Steps to a Pain-Free Back "For too long all of us-and women in particular-have been slaves to shoe fashion, and the price we have paid is far more than a new pair Jimmy Choos. As Katy Bowman explains in Every Woman's Guide to Foot Pain Relief, poor footwear choices have weakened our feet, impaired our alignment, and damaged our joints, leading to a host of physical problems from head to toe. Bowman offers simple solutions to improving your health by helping you understand the impact shoes have on your body, showing you how to make smarter footwear choices and describing fun and simple exercises you can do to strengthen your feet. This book is definitely a step in the right direction." -Daniel Howell, Ph.D., "The Barefoot Professor," author of The Barefoot Book: 50 Great Reasons To Kick Off Your Shoes