The way to Contact Your Toes (4 Stretches)


This won't be painful, I promise!

It’s time to discover ways to contact your toes!

What makes me so assured you’ll be capable of attain your little piggy wiggies?

As a result of we train even probably the most “rigid” of parents how you can contact their toes in our 1-on-1 Online Coaching Program, and we’ll share with you all our secrets and techniques under.

Right here’s what we’ll cowl in our information, The way to Contact Your Toes:

It’s time to turn out to be flexible like Gumby! 

Don't worry, we're just getting started with appearances from Gumby.


Let’s do that.

The Advantages of Being In a position to Contact Your Toes

I told you Gumby would be back.

If you wish to improve your flexibility, you’re gonna must stretch.[1] It’s the way you make your muscle tissues elastic and robust.

Why hassle although? What’s the large deal about having the ability to contact your toes?

The advantages of stretching embody:

  • Improve vary of movement. Should you can transfer a joint via its full vary of movement, you’re gonna have extra freedom of motion. Confidently navigating the bodily world is an indication of a wholesome nerd, which is why flexibility shouldn’t be ignored. Among the finest methods to turn out to be extra versatile is to stretch.[2] 
  • Enhance posture. If you wish to cease slouching a lot, repeatedly stretching might assist.[3] Stretching works to enhance muscle imbalances, which in flip would possibly assist your posture.
  • Alleviate again ache. Should you undergo from again ache, it could be price beginning a stretching routine .[4] The muscle tissues in your again could be tight, proscribing your vary of movement, which causes ache. Stretching can assist loosen up the world, plus strengthen the muscle. This would possibly assist forestall future harm. 

Stretching, and the flexibility that comes with it, shouldn’t be ignored when building a workout routine

Whereas there are a lot of indicators of fine flexibility, one of the well-liked is undoubtedly having the ability to contact your toes.

Don't worry buddy, we'll teach you exactly how to reach your feet!

In any case, it was so essential the President had all American schoolchildren carry out the “Sit and Attain” check to see if they might seize their ft.[5]

Touching your toes might need been a wrestle for you then. It’d nonetheless be a wrestle for you now.

What’s occurring?

Why Can’t I Contact My Toes?

Do otters have toes? Claws?

If you’re unable to the touch your toes, it’s most definitely due to considered one of these 4 main causes:

#1) Shortened/tight posterior chain muscle tissues. Though most individuals suppose not having the ability to contact our toes simply means your hamstring muscle tissues are rigid, in actuality our entire system (together with the decrease again) can play an enormous function as properly! As Mark Rippetoe explains on this video concerning the Romanian deadlift, what you might suppose is a decrease again situation can be a hamstring situation (and vice versa):

You see, the posterior chain is an interconnected sequence of muscle tissues that features our again muscle tissues, erector spinae (muscle tissues alongside our backbone), decrease again muscle tissues, butts, and hamstrings.

The posterior chain is proven right here:

As you can see, much of our body is dependent on the posterior chain muscles.

Weak mobility factors in a single place within the system can turn out to be debilitating (and infrequently simple to identify) once we do compound movements like the deadlift.

Should you’re anyone who sits at a desk all day and struggles to the touch your toes, you in all probability aren’t strengthening or lengthening these muscle tissues as a result of the chair is doing the entire be just right for you.

#2) You will have comparatively lengthy legs in comparison with your torso and arms. Individuals with lengthy legs and quick torsos could have a higher problem than individuals who have quick legs and lengthy torsos and arms.

Yeah, having long legs might make reaching your toes more difficult.

However concern not, you can also degree up and get these toes touched.

#3) You will have an excessive amount of physique fats. If you’re obese and occur to have a giant abdomen, it might probably actually make touching one’s toes tougher. Since you already know that diet is 90% of the battle on the subject of weight reduction, give attention to diet to start shedding weight (listed here are the 5 rules of weight loss that can assist you start). This can be a think about making it simpler to the touch your toes.

#4) You’re not warmed up but. Should you JUST awoke or spent all day in a automotive, you’re aware of the rigidity that makes you really feel like a metal girder. Your muscle tissues act like rubber bands; the extra they’re used, the extra they’re warmed-up, and the additional they’ll stretch. For this reason we encourage individuals to undergo a mobility warm-up earlier than train!

Arm circles like so are a great way to get your heart rate up before doing HIIT.

Let’s put a plan in place to lastly contact our toes!

Figuring out Your Preliminary Flexibility (We All Begin Someplace)

While we are going to go over many stretches, feel free to make your own!

Earlier than we will implement a technique to develop extra flexibility that permits you to contact your toes, we have to know your place to begin.

As Peter Drucker stated, “That which will get measured will get managed.” Or on this case, that which will get measured will get extra versatile! 

The next comes from our free 5-Day Flexibility Series, which you’ll join in the present day!


  1. Stand straight together with your legs about hip-width aside. You need your legs to be straight, however don’t aggressively lock out your knees both (this appears like a “microbend” to lots of people).
  2. Start by bending and leaning ahead in direction of the bottom together with your quads (entrance of your legs).
  3. Let your physique relaxation naturally, as in the event you have been a ragdoll. Preserving your fingers comparatively shut collectively, straighten your fingers and start to stretch down slowly to the bottom.
  4. Do that 2-3 instances to get warmed up. Attempt to maintain your legs straight by flexing or activating your quads; maintain your legs straight, with out locking your knees.
  5. Aside from the microbend, don’t bend your knees that can assist you get nearer to the bottom! I’m watching you. Should you’re videotaping your self on these to track your progress, be aware that relying in your physique (and your hamstrings) your legs might not look 100% straight.

When you’re prepared, attain in direction of the bottom and maintain it for a number of seconds. Measure the gap in one of many following methods:

  • Should you aren’t touching the bottom, have a pal measure the gap from the tip of your fingers to the bottom. Should you don’t have a pal with you, place your fingers in your legs and be aware the place the guidelines of your fingers find yourself.
  • Should you can contact the bottom, you’ll need to flatten your fingers as a lot as doable, and document the gap from the highest of your head to the bottom. As you’ll be able to stretch additional, the highest of your head will truly get nearer and nearer to the bottom.
  • If this appears simple, strive hugging your calves and pulling your head in in direction of your physique.

Report your measurement in a doc or on a bit of paper (in the event you’re part of the flexibility challenge, we now have a doc you’ll be able to print out), and/or save the picture/video to point out how far down you might be reaching.

The 4 Greatest Stretches to Contact Your Toes (Enhance Your flexibility)

Of course we were going to include this photo.

There are two key elements that can decide whether or not or not you might be profitable in gaining the power to the touch your toes as you observe over the following few weeks:

  1. Actively stretching your muscle tissues JUST previous the purpose of consolation. Like strength training by including 1 rep or a number of kilos to an train, we need to stretch simply past the purpose the place we stretched final time so our muscle tissues need to elongate.
  2. Constant observe and energy! You’ll be able to’t enhance your flexibility by stretching for five minutes as soon as a month. You’d be higher off stretching for 30 seconds unfold out 10 instances all through the month.

That’s proper. Research confirmed that actively specializing in touching your toes for 30 seconds, 3 instances per week was sufficient to elongate hamstring muscle tissues in 4 weeks. [6]

I‘m positive there’s an inappropriate joke to be made right here about 30 seconds of effort, however I’m higher than that (I believe).

In much less time than it takes to replace your Fb standing, you might be touching your toes and make Gumby proud.

Is there anything Gumby can't do?

And I do know you have time.


All I’m asking for is 2 minutes. 2 minutes! You’ll be able to even unfold these actions out all through your day – I love to do them after I work out. After an extended day at a desk, after driving, or upon waking up are all good instances to work on flexibility!

By means of every of the actions under, be sure to are respiratory slowly and steadily.

You’ll be able to comply with together with the entire actions under that come from our actually enjoyable on-line course, Nerd Health Yoga (part of NF Prime). It’s primarily yoga for those who don’t do yoga.


  1. Standing toe contact stretch – 30 seconds
  2. Cat/Camel – 30 seconds (swap positions each 5 seconds)
  3. Star stretch – 30 seconds (as many gradual reps as you’ll be able to)
  4. Moon the sky – 30 seconds (as many gradual reps as you’ll be able to)

1) Standing toe contact stretch: Flex/activate the entrance of your legs, maintain them straight, and bend over on the waist juuuust previous the purpose of discomfort; maintain that place for 30 seconds. Repeat this course of each different day and maintain it for 30 seconds.

Don't push it, but let yourself ragdoll down.

2) We are able to loosen up a good decrease again by doing 30 seconds of shifting backwards and forwards each few seconds by doing a “cat” after which a “cow”:

These yoga poses are a great way to help exercise your back.

3) You can too do what we name a star stretch to assist stretch these legs out! Stand together with your legs unfold vast, and arms prolonged (therefore the time period Star!), after which attain down with one hand to your reverse leg; maintain for 5 seconds, again to start out, and repeat with the opposite leg.

The Star Stretch is a great practice to touch your toes.

4) Right here’s one other favourite motion of mine that helps enhance my flexibility and mobility: the “Moon the Sky” stretch!

This stretch is a great way to increase flexibility so you can touch your toes!

It is a nice stretch to combine into your pre-workout warmup to get your legs, butt, and again ready for work:

  • Squat down and put your fingers beneath your ft
  • Slowly transfer your butt up together with your fingers remaining beneath your ft.
  • Elevate your butt and attempt to straighten your legs
  • Go a TEENY bit increased every time till you’ll be able to totally straighten your legs!

For any of the above strikes, a great way to test your kind can be to document a video of your self and match it in opposition to the movies and gifs right here. If they appear shut, you’re doing nice!

If you wish to have an knowledgeable evaluation your stretches, our coaches can do exactly that in our snazzy app!

The way to Grow to be Extra Versatile (Subsequent Steps)

This would be an advanced way to touch your toes.

It’s now time to coach to the touch your toes!

Check your toe-touching skills earlier than and after doing the 2-minutes of train above, and I guess you’ll discover a distinction immediately – simply wait to see what you’ll be able to accomplish in a number of weeks!

The cool factor about flexibility is that any mixture of the stretches above will allow you to enhance your flexibility so long as you constantly work on it a tiny bit on daily basis.

I do mobility work: 

  • Once I get up
  • After I work out
  • All through my day (when working at my desk)
  • On the finish of my day for a minute or two earlier than mattress

All added up, it’s lower than 5 minutes of time, but it surely’s sufficient to point out me some outcomes!

I feel like this is cheating.

Should you comply with our information above, you’ll be properly in your technique to growing your flexibility and touching your toesie wosies.

You simply want to start out!

Need some assist getting going? A bit further push out the door? 

We constructed three excellent subsequent steps for growing your flexibility!

#1) Work with knowledgeable Yoda! In order for you confidence that you just’re following a program that’s tailored in your busy life, scenario, and targets, take a look at our well-liked 1-on-1 Coaching Program.

Lots of our purchasers have “elevated flexibility” as considered one of their health targets, and so they take consolation figuring out a licensed NF teacher is guiding them there. 

#2) Exercising at residence and want a plan to comply with? Try Nerd Health Journey!

Our enjoyable habit-building app helps you train extra ceaselessly, eat more healthy, and degree up your life (actually).

Strive your free trial proper right here:

#3) Be part of our superb free neighborhood, the Nerd Health Rebel! Not solely is it free to affix, however we’ll offer you a great deal of free goodies whenever you sign-up:

That ought to nearly do it for our information on The way to Contact Your Toes.

Now, your flip:

Are you able to contact your toes?

Does trying to “sit and attain” deliver again horrors from grade college?

Every other ideas or methods for mobility coaching?

Tell us within the feedback!


PS: Be sure to take a look at the remainder of our Mobility Coaching sequence:


GIF credit score: banana, Danny Devito, gumby, patrick.

Photograph credit score: toe touch, posterior chain, roar, yoga sunset, the adventures of Gumby and R2D2, Stormtroopers and Gumby

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