Towel Curl Foot Strengthening Exercise

The towel curl is an excellent foot strengthening exercise. If you do it well you will be stretching and flexing your foot in a way that will help balance your foot action, support the arches of your feet, and increase overall foot strength.

What You Need 

You will need a small towel or an exercise band. You will need a chair or bench to sit on. You can do this exercise anywhere, even while on the toilet.


Starting Position

Low section view of a woman's feet on a bathroom floor
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  1. Smooth the towel or band out and place one foot on it, flat. You are going to be moving the towel toward yourself so have extra fabric in front of your foot.
  2. Sit with your heels under your knees.
  3. Make sure your legs and feet are parallel to each other with the toes pointing forward.

Extend Your Foot

  1. Keep your heel down, lift your toes, and flex your foot back.
  2. Your heel stays in place on the towel as you reach out evenly along both sides and the middle of your foot to get your foot to land on the towel as far out as you can.

Curl Your Foot to Grasp and Pull the Towel

  1. Leave your heel where it is and pull the towel toward your heel by scooping it in with your arch and toes.
  2. Use both sides of your foot and try for a deep dome under the arch area.
    You will only get a little bit of the towel to move each time you extend and pull back. You might have to take a break to smooth the towel and band after a few reps.
  3. Repeat the move at least 5 times and then do the other side.

Variations of the Towel Curl Exercise

Add a Weight: Once you have mastered the towel curl, you might want to increase the challenge of the exercise by adding a small weighted object to the far end of the towel. Start with a lighter weight, such as four to six ounces. You can use any of ​your cosmetics that you have handy. To increase the weight, get a can of soup from your pantry. Once you have mastered that weight, go for the big can.

Towel Push: In the opposite motion of the towel curl, now push the towel forward by curling and uncurling your toes. Again, keep your heels on the floor so it isn't your ankle or heel dong any of the work.

Learn More About Exercising the Feet

  • The Arch Lifting Exercise: Do this exercise while seated, raising the arches as if a dome is inflating under the middle of your foot.
  • Pilates Foot Exercise Equipment: Pilates has two pieces of equipment to strengthen the feet. These include the foot corrector and the toe exerciser.
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