Heel Drop Stretch or Stair Stretch
This page provides details on the Heel Drop Stretch (also known as a Stair Stretch). This stretch involves standing on the edge of the stairs and lowering your heels below the edge of the stair. Make sure to hold onto the stair rail for safety. This stretching exercise focuses on areas such as the foot, Achilles and calf muscles.
This stretch is often used as a plantar fasciitis stretch. Plantar fasciitis is a painful foot condition caused by the inflammation of the plantar fascia, a thick band of tissue that runs across the bottom of your foot. Plantar fasciitis pain can occur due to the kicking, rapid movements and jumping involved in martial arts training. The heel drop stretch is also used to stretch the Achilles tendon.
Heel drops are also used as a leg exercise in order to strengthen a martial artist’s calf muscles. Stronger calf muscles help to create more powerful kicks and helps to reduce potential calf injuries. The strength exercise variation of heel drops involves raising your heel above and below the edge of the stairs.
All stretches and exercises should be supervised by a trained martial arts instructor in order to prevent injuries and to ensure the proper technique is utilized. For other foot stretches, please visit the main Stretching section.
Instructional Video for Heel Drops