This is something we’ve been teaching informally for years, many of the exercises came about from discussions on the Society for Barefoot Living group (formerly the Dirty Sole Society), and it’s taken me a few years to get around to posting to the original Running Barefoot website, and several more to posting to the updated website.
Toe Yoga, or the term coined by Barefoot Preston, “Toe-Ga”, is really not a formal practice (and hopefully will remain informal). There aren’t any books, or professional teachers (yet) dictating the detailed mechanics of these exercises. Which makes them a whole lot more accessible and easier to learn (make them up as you go), for the general population.
Oh, by the way, take off your shoes first, and if practical your socks too.
And remember, we aren’t going to grade you on form, or how much you can flex, or the power of your toe-lifts, etc. Each person, and each foot is different, so instead of wallowing in conformity, let’s celebrate our diversity!
Following are brief descriptions of few exercises people do.
Twist the front of each foot in each direction, while limiting (gently) the twist of the rear of each foot.
The Toe Wiggle
This is probably the most free-form of the Toe-Ga exercises. It really isn’t so much of a “wiggle”, as it is a slow, gentle flexing of the toes.
The Towel Pick-Up
This one is good, if you want a date with a dish towel. Just lay the dish towel on the floor, and practice picking it up with your toes.
It probably doesn’t really matter which alphabet you use, but the idea is to spell out each letter, or symbol, with the toes. Advanced Toe-Ga enthusiasts can also do the numbers, count as high as you like.
Similar to the Alphabet, but use squares, rectangles, ellipses, eccentric circles, cones, etc..