Jordi Cervera | www.jordicervera.comIn the case of a bunion - a chronic crooked position of the big toe - targeted foot gymnastics exercises are helpful to prevent hallux valgus or to support the treatment of hallux valgus. At the same time, you can use these foot exercises to train and strengthen the feet as a whole.Short daily training sessions can bring about amazing progress. You can do some simple foot exercises yourself without special aids and easily integrate them into your everyday life. For a more extensive gymnastics programme, you should think about physiotherapy.

Here you will learn the correct gymnastic exercises that can, among other things, support the treatment of a hallux valgus.


For patients with hallux valgus, the foot surgeon Dr. Tonio Gottlieb is your contact person for everything to do with foot health and foot surgery. He examines you with the utmost care and always has the entire body statics in mind. Whether you need an initial diagnosis or a second opinion - make your personal consultation appointment now!

Arrange a consultation appointment now!


Exercises should only be done in consultation with the doctor or under the instruction of a physiotherapist

Dr.Gottlieb Behandlung am Fuss

Once the malpositioning of the big toe in hallux valgus has occurred, gymnastic exercises can only be used to try to stop the progression of foot instability. The best way for hallux valgus patients to exercise is with special foot gymnastics exercises that are recommended by a doctor. Various helpful self-help exercises can be done on your own without hesitation. For some of the exercises, you only need everyday objects as aids.

Despite the positive effect of special hallux valgus gymnastic exercises - as part of conservative therapy - patients should always bear in mind that the deformity of the big toe can only be permanently eliminated by surgery. If you have already been suffering from mobile restrictions for years, e.g. when doing sports, jogging or hiking, or if you have been in pain for many years, then a surgical correction of the bunion is recommended.

Dr Tonio Gottlieb: "With hallux valgus, the muscles of the foot are already extremely misaligned. Targeted gymnastics can strengthen the statics and thus make the foot more resilient. Regular training of the foot muscles counteracts further lowering of the arch of the foot and thus further development of hallux valgus."

With these 8 exercises you can reduce hallux valgus and improve your foot statics, among other things

If you want to curb the progression of a hallux valgus deformity and delay future discomfort as much as possible, we have put together some simple and effective exercises that you can do at home without any problems or much preparation.

Therefore, start right away with the following simple foot gymnastics exercises and soon benefit from the positive results!

Foot massage to prepare the foot for gymnastics

The foot massage prepares the foot for gymnastics, loosens tense muscles and sensitises the sole of the foot.

Lightly stroke the sole of the foot with both thumbs. This makes the forefoot hollow.

Uebung 1Exercise 1: four small exercises to strengthen the foot and toe flexors with everyday objects

This is how the exercises work:

Grasp a small stone (see illustration) or other small objects with your toes. Tear a paper handkerchief with your toes. Lay figures (e.g.: circles or words) with a rope. Gather a weighted cloth with your toes.

They have this effect:

These foot exercises with everyday objects help to strengthen the foot and toe flexors.



Uebung 2

Exercise 2: more strength for the transverse and longitudinal arch of the foot through the "ball" exercise

This is how the exercise works:

Hold a ball with the balls of your feet. Lift the ball for a few seconds.

Recommended repetitions: 10 x

It has that effect:

With this exercise you effectively strengthen the transverse and longitudinal arch of the foot.



Exercise 3: activate the muscles of the big toe with the "foot screw" exercise

Uebung 3

This is how the exercise works:

Sit on the floor. Place the right foot in front of you. Let the knee drop outwards onto a cushion or ball. Now place the foot on the edge of the foot. Hold the heel with your left hand. With your right hand, now stroke along the edge of the shinbone and grasp the foot at the level of the instep. Now turn the foot slightly forwards and downwards in a spiral against the resistance of the hand on the inner edge of the foot. Then bring the foot back and repeat the screw-like movement several times. Repeat the exercise with the left foot.

It has that effect:

Therapy according to Spiraldynamik® with the "foot-screw" exercise trains all the muscles that bring the foot into the spiral shape. This strengthens the statics of the foot at the same time.

Dr. Gottlieb, the specialised foot surgeon in Berlin advises:

"Hallux valgus gymnastics is the only therapy for the foot that is absolutely risk-free and therefore definitely recommended!"

Uebung 4

Exercise 4: build up and strengthen the arch of the foot with gymnastics

This is how the exercise works:

Assume a standing position. The foot remains on the floor. First distribute the weight centrally over the foot. Then tense all the muscles of the sole of the foot and pull the big toe towards the heel. The pressure points are under the heel, outer edge of the foot and ball of the big toe.

Recommended repetitions: 2 x 10

Who wants more:

You can also do this exercise in a step position, later standing on one leg or on unstable surfaces.

It has that effect:

This gymnastic exercise stabilises the arch of the foot and thus strengthens the entire statics of the foot.



Uebung 5

Exercise 5: the “caterpillar walk” exercise strengthens the foot muscles and stabilises the arch of the foot

This is how the exercise works:

Sit on a stool or chair. Point your toes forward. Crawl forward with the right foot "like a caterpillar". Slowly move the foot forward by grasping it with the toes. While doing this, curl the big toe as far as possible.

Recommended repetitions: 5 x back and forth, then repeat with the left foot.

It has that effect:

These gymnastics strengthen the foot muscles and thus stabilise the arch of the foot.



Uebung 6

Exercise 6: improve the foot and lower leg muscles by "pushing the heels apart"

This is how the exercise works:

Sit on a chair or stool and place both feet and knees close together. Push both heels outwards while keeping the knees and toes together.

Recommended repetitions: 10 x

It has that effect:

This exercise not only supports the treatment of hallux valgus. On the one hand it trains flexibility and coordination, on the other hand it strengthens the foot and lower leg muscles.



Uebung 7

Exercise 7: strengthen the small foot muscles with the help of "toe claws and spreads

This is how the exercise works:

Sit on a chair and alternately clench and spread your toes. Do the exercise first with the right foot and then with the left foot.

Recommended repetitions: 3 x 10

It has that effect:

With this exercise you train flexibility and coordination on the one hand and strengthen the small foot muscles at the same time.



Uebung 8

Exercise 8: calf lengthening and dorsal extension training

This is how the exercise works:

Assume a step position. Both feet are in contact with the floor. The toes are pointing forward. Now stretch the back leg and push the hip forward. The heel remains on the floor. Hold this position for 20 to 30 seconds.

Recommended repetitions: 3 to 5 times

It has that effect:

The aim of the exercise is to stretch the calf or achilles tendon.


The foot surgeon Dr Tonio Gottlieb is an experienced specialist in all aspects of foot health and foot surgery. He examines you with the utmost care and also keeps an eye on the entire body statics. Based on a comprehensive diagnosis, he will always give you a stringent recommendation for action.

All information at the counselling interview!

You can achieve initial results with just five minutes of gymnastics in the morning and evening

Integrate your hallux valgus exercises into your daily routine and exercise regularly twice a day, preferably in the morning and evening. As with all physical exercises, continuous training pays off and you can thereby improve and strengthen the statics of the foot in the long term. This can have a positive effect on the bunion and the associated health problems.

How often should hallux valgus therapy exercises be performed per week?

You should do your hallux valgus foot exercises daily if possible. The investment of just five minutes of gymnastics can be helpful in strengthening the entire foot statics in the long term. It is best to exercise at fixed times, for example in the morning right after getting up and in the evening before going to bed. Make your hallux valgus exercises a routine you have come to love.

What pain is normal during gymnastics exercises?

Ideally, the gymnastic exercises should be pain-free for a diagnosed bunion. However, depending on the clinical picture, individual pain may occur during individual exercises. In case of more severe or permanent pain, you should consult your foot surgeon.

More tips on toe exercises for hallux valgus

A pronounced hallux valgus cannot be revised by toe gymnastics, but must be surgically straightened. Regular gymnastics can, however, alleviate slight discomfort. These include walking on tiptoe, alternately curling and spreading the toes, or walking barefoot - preferably on soft ground such as sand. You can also specifically train the crooked big toe: First lift the big toe and keep the four other toes on the ground. Then the other way round: try to lift the four little toes while pressing the big toe to the ground.

Results take time, but can last

As with any other sporting activity, training success only comes after regular practice. Be patient and let your exercise programme become a daily routine.

Dr Tonio Gottlieb advises:

"If you are consistent and do gymnastics regularly, you can gradually enjoy positive results. Once the initial training deficit has been made up, it is important to maintain the new training status in everyday use. Incidentally, this applies not only to hallux valgus, but also to other conditions of the foot, such as heel spurs."

Make an appointment now!