If you have every undergone physical therapy targeting your feet, you may have noticed that one common technique involves stretching out feet muscles. Dancers use this technique too. Stretching feet muscles improves flexibility, strengthens tendons, reduces pain and boosts mobility. A foot stretcher is a simple device that can help you do all this from the comfort of your home.
If you are a dancer, an athlete or someone who spends a lot of time on their feet, a foot stretcher can be of great help. It is especially beneficial if your feet tend to get sore or if you have a chronic foot condition such as plantar fasciitis.
We compared the top foot stretchers in the market and ended up with 5 of the best from those available in the UK.
Best foot stretcher reviews
This simple-looking foot stretcher has been specifically designed for people participating in ballet and gymnastics. These activities often demand a lot from lower leg and foot muscles. The participant must achieve balance, control and strength, all of which rely greatly on the feet. This foot stretcher to safely and effectively carry out arch exercises to improve their performance.
- Covered in soft foam for safe and comfortable use.
- Small enough to be carried around for on-the-go use.
- You can only stretch one foot at a time. It would be nice if it allowed the user to work both feet simultaneously.
This foot stretcher focuses on the ankle, specifically aiming to improve flexibility and strength. It is also effective at reducing lower leg pain. By gently stretching calf and foot muscles, this stretcher increases the range of motion of the ankle while also tightening calf muscles. It is perfect for athletes, gymnasts and those who spend a lot of time standing up or walking.
- Non-slip silicone covering provides a safe and effective way to stretch your leg muscles.
- Light and compact enough to be carried to the gym, office and on your travels.
- Doesn’t focus much on calf muscles. It is not ideal for those who want all-round lower leg development.
With six angle settings, this stretch board allows you to stretch your leg and feet muscles in varying intensities ranging from 15 to 39 degrees. It is particularly designed to relieve pain for people suffering from Achilles tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, heel pain and strained calf muscles. It can also be used as part of a workout routine to help improve flexibility and core strength.
- Provides variation in stretching intensity.
- Folds up for easy storage and portability.
- There is no user guide provided along with the stretcher, which makes things a bit difficult for first time users.
This stretcher comes with an easy to use rocker design that targets calf muscles, Achilles tendons and foot muscles. When used regularly, either for exercise or physical therapy, it increases lower leg strength, improves flexibility and boosts overall mobility.
- Easy to use and effective at relieving pain in the lower leg area.
- You can pack it in your bag and travel with it.
- Some users note that the design is not very durable. Some parts came off after some time.
This one has the same rocker design as many other stretchers in the market. By stretching your foot back and forth, your calf and foot muscles are stretched. This increases your ankles flexibility, makes your feet stronger and can help with pain relief. Even better, the package comes with two stretchers meaning you can work on both feet at the same time.
- Comes in a pair, allowing you to exercise both feet simulataneously.
- Easy to use.
- Because of the rocker design, you may experience balance issues when using it. Have something like a wall to hold on to especially when you have both stretchers on.
What to consider when buying a foot stretcher
There are plenty of options available when you are searching for the perfect foot stretcher. You will come across different brands with varying designs and all of them making huge promises. To help you make the right choice, here are the most important considerations to keep in mind when buying a foot stretcher.
a. Intended use
The first thing to look for is the intended use of the foot stretcher. This will often be in the manufacturer’s specifications. Some foot stretchers are designed specifically for ballet dancers while others are ideal for physical therapy. Others can be used in multiple ways. Find out what the stretcher is designed for and determine whether it fits your needs.
Don’t waste your money on a stretcher that will break within a week or two. Make sure it meets important quality standards. The best way to check the quality of a foot stretcher is to look at what other users are saying. Did it feel flimsy? What it strong enough to step on? Did it last long or did it break after a few uses?
c. Ease of use
Generally, foot stretchers are easy to use so this should be no issue. Avoid complicated looking designs with no clear usage instructions.
Frequently asked questions
1. Does a foot stretcher use electricity?
No, foot stretchers do not generally require electricity to function. So you can use them anywhere and anytime. If you are looking for a powered device for your feet, try an electric foot massager.
2. Will a foot stretcher reduce foot ache?
If used properly and regularly, a foot stretcher should help mitigate pain in the feet and calves. In fact, it is highly recommended for people with arch pain and other chronic foot conditions that cause pain and soreness. You can also use it when your feet are feeling sore after a long day at work.
3. How long until I start seeing results?
This depends on how well you are using the stretcher, how often you are using it and the type of stretcher. Some people feel a change after just the first use while others have to use it for longer to experience any positive changes.
4. How does a foot stretcher work?
Different foot stretcher designs work differently. But generally, foot stretchers work by providing leverage that allow you to stretch your arch, ankle and calf muscles.
Most foot stretchers are designed to allow varying degrees and intensity of stretching. So you can start small and slowly increase your stretch over time.
5. How long should you use a foot stretcher?
To avoid straining and injuring your muscles, use a foot stretcher for just 2-5 minutes a day. You can schedule daily stretches to coincide with your workout routine.
6. Does a foot stretcher help with flat feet?
Yes, certain exercises using a foot stretcher can reduce pain, muscle strain and other problems associated with having fallen arches.
We recommend talking to a physiotherapist or podiatrist on which foot stretcher exercises are safe and effective.