“Dancing Feet” is one of the best-loved songs from the famed musical, “42nd Street.” So, how are you taking care of your dancing feet – or are you, at all? Whether you like to waltz or cha-cha or cross the dance floor in a glorious tango, your feet are the principal carriers of the rest of your body. And they deserve and would appreciate a little pampering. Here are some suggestions from your friends at Fred Astaire Dance Studios as to the care of your precious feet.
- Be careful breaking in new shoes (dance or otherwise). Blisters are our enemy! They may occur anywhere on the foot, but most often appear on the surface of the toes or on the heel. You may use a sterilized needle to pop a clear blister if the skin hasn’t broken; a red (blood blister) should be left to heal by itself and ought to be covered by a bandage.
- Don’t worry much about calluses. If you are constantly on the dance floor and putting pressure on your feet, calluses are natural, can help prevent blisters and are actually protecting your feet, naturally. Resist the urge to soak your feet or take those calluses off with a pumice stone or with a pedicure, because that could create sore, raw areas on your feet which could inhibit your dancing and cause infection.
- Your feet can feel tight from dancing, and a foot massage can feel terrific. Here’s how to do a “selfie” – and all you need is a tennis ball. Take off your shoes and roll the soles of your feet over the tennis ball. Put enough of your weight on the tennis ball to feel your muscles relax. Pay particular attention to on the arch, the ball of your foot, and your toes.
- Try orthotics – these shoe inserts can relieve foot ache and prevent foot ailments that could otherwise end up requiring surgery.
- Treat foot pain seriously. The foot is a complex body part with 26 bones and 33 joints. If you have chronic foot pain or your feet often feel sore and tired, seeing the advice of a podiatrist or foot care specialist is recommended.
In general, preventative maintenance tips include (1) keeping your toenails cut short, (2) avoiding colored nail polish (which can mask foot issues that manifest in the nail) except for special occasions, (3) wearing dance shoes that fit well, (4) keeping your feet well moisturized, and (5) caring for any blisters as soon as you’re aware of them. Find more info on pampering your feet, from DanceInforma.com, here. We’ll see you soon at Fred Astaire Dance Studios, putting those happy feet to good use! Fred Astaire Dance Studios is your best choice for ballroom and Latin dance instruction, offering the best in group and private dance classes.