Ouchless Arches

August 15, 2007

Cramps in the arch of your foot can put a cramp in your dancing style. Most dancers try to massage it out using a tennis ball or the edge of the barre, but there are ways to prevent it. Dr. Frank Sinkoe, Atlanta Ballet’s podiatrist gives the dancers foot-strengthening exercises like toe push ups (sitting in a chair push onto pointe from demi-pointe), an extra dose of tendus, and relevés while standing on a half roller bar or slant board. But watch your turn out: If your feet roll in, you’ll stretch that plantar fascia on the bottom of your feet and strain your arch muscles. For a quicker fix, try wearing leather ballet shoes instead of canvas or tape your foot around the metatarsals for extra support.