Try Out These 5 Leg & Foot Exercises For Neuropathy

The pain and tingling that comes with peripheral neuropathy can have an impact on almost every part of your life. It can especially make it difficult to walk and exercise because it can affect your balance. The pain from the damage to the nerves in your feet and lower legs can, however, actually be reduced by exercising. This isn’t a permanent solution or a type of neuropathy treatment that addresses the cause of the nerve damage, but it can help you strengthen your legs and improve your balance. Here are some of these exercises that will help with your neuropathy.

Stretch Your Calves

Stretching helps to reduce the pain and tension in your muscles, both of which can affect neuropathy. There are a number of different stretches you can do, including stretching your calf muscles. A seated stretch is your best option if the neuropathy has affected your balance. You will need a long towel or a small throw blanket to do this stretch. First, sit down with your legs in front of you. Take the towel and hold it in both hands. Place the ball of one foot in the middle of the towel. Now, use the towel to pull your leg up while keeping the knee as straight as you can.

If you find this is difficult, you can try bending the other knee. Doing so will reduce some of the pressure on the hamstrings and back, making it easier to lift your other leg.

Stretch Your Hamstrings

This is another stretch you can do while seated. For this exercise, you will need a chair. Sit on it close to the edge. Lift one leg, point the toe, and extend it out in front of you while keeping the other foot flat on the floor. Now lean over until your chest touches your straight leg. Keep your back as straight as you can. You should feel your muscles stretch while in this pose. Hold it for up to 20 seconds, then repeat with the other leg. Do three sets of this exercise at a time.

Balance Exercises

These exercises will help you maintain your balance. Always do these exercises with someone else or near a sturdy table or counter so you can catch yourself if you start to fall. First, stand with your feet together. Close your eyes and keep your balance. If you feel fine after a few minutes, you can try lifting one foot while balancing on the other.

Another good balance exercise is to place one of your feet in front of the other one. Once you are comfortably balanced in this stance, try turning your head to one side and then to the other.

Try a Recumbent Bike

Biking is a great aerobic exercise, but if your balance is affected, it can be dangerous. Recumbent bikes, though, do not require you to exercise. These bikes have three wheels and a large, comfortable seat that is similar to a lounge chair. You lean back and place your feet on the pedals at the front of the bike. Some gyms also have stational recumbent bikes that you can use. There is no risk of falling because you don’t have to balance to keep the bike upright.

Seated Strength Training Exercises

In addition to stretches and recumbent biking, any type of strength training you can do for your legs while seated can help with your balance and neuropathy pain. For example, you can use a knee flexion machine or do knee extensions to help build up muscle.

See an Expert

While exercising will help reduce the pain from neuropathy, it’s not as effective as professional neuropathy treatment. If you suffer from neuropathy, the experts here at Fox Integrated Healthcare can help. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.