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performing foot massage technique between foot's arch and ball of the foot

Foot Massage Techniques for Relaxation and Relief

Similar to practicing exercises and stretches at home, learning how to perform your own foot massage and relaxation techniques can work wonders. Whether you’re looking to manage your own pain, or tending to a loved one, foot massages can provide comfort and stress relief.

Since foot massages are a major component of DIY foot care, we want to give you some handy tips on how to make the most of them. Let’s discuss how to massage each part of the foot, and highlight foot massage benefits you may not even be aware of!

Today’s blog will explore:

  • Main benefits of a foot massage
  • Foot massage techniques
  • Additional benefits of a foot massage
massaging bottom of the foot towards ball of the foot

Main Benefits of a Foot Massage

Foot massages can be empowering for those on a pain management journey. Regularly performing them before bed and when you wake up adds value to your treatment plan, and can make your daily life more comfortable! Here are the numerous benefits:

  • Targeted treatment of foot conditions
  • Relaxation and stress relief
  • Swelling (edema) management 
  • Restless leg syndrome management
  • Reduces foot fatigue and boosts energy
  • Improves blood circulation 
using a massage ball on the bottom of the foot as a foot massage

Foot Massages Techniques

A comprehensive foot massage should target as much of the foot as possible, but sometimes foot pain and conditions tend to affect certain areas and you want to focus on what you’re struggling with.


Can help with plantar fasciitis, Achilles’ tendonitis, etc. 

  • Apply gentle pressure to the heel, using circular motions with your thumbs to loosen up the area. 

Foot Arch / Bottom of the Foot 

Can help with flat feet, high arches, metatarsalgia, etc. 

  • While standing, place your arch on top of a therapeutic massage ball, and roll back and forth. This doubles as a useful foot exercise
  • Use your knuckles to knead and massage the arch in a back-and-forth motion.
  • Apply firm yet comfortable pressure with your thumbs in small circular motions, addressing as much tension as possible. 


Can help with arthritis, bunions, etc. 

  • Apply a light, pinching motion to the base of each toe, working your way towards the tip.
  • Use your thumbs to press and release along the toe joints, addressing any tension.
  • Gently pull each toe away from the foot until you feel a subtle stretch.

Top of the Foot

Can help with extensor tendonitis, arthritis, stress fractures, etc. 

  • Apply gentle pressure with your thumbs along the top of the foot, from the base of the toes to the ankle.
  • Use your knuckles or thumbs to knead the area in small circular motions, focusing on any tightness or tension.
  • Incorporate long, sweeping strokes with your palms, moving from the toes towards the ankle.

Additional Benefits of a Foot Massage

You may also find acupressure points in the feet and foot reflexology worth exploring.

Some studies suggest that “meridian points on the feet correspond with various organs in the body,” which is the concept behind foot reflexology. These organs include the kidneys, liver, small intestine, and many more. Essentially, applying gentle pressure to the appropriate acupressure points is believed to stimulate the flow of energy along the body’s meridians. 

In addition to pain management and stress relief, foot reflexology may also help with sleep, digestion, and eyesight. Your DIY massages may somewhat reflect what reflexology can achieve, but it’s important to discuss the concept with a healthcare professional if it interests you. 

Looking for More DIY Foot Care?

Stop by our one-stop-shop foot clinic for more foot care accessories and our wide array of high-quality footwear! While you’re at it, why not visit one of our chiropodists to make sure your feet are in good shape? Call us at (416) 769-3338 or book an appointment online!

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Carolina Charles

Patient Relation Coordinator (She/Her)

If you’ve been to the clinic before, chances are you had the pleasure of meeting Carolina! Carolina’s daily goal is going above and beyond to make sure patients are always completely satisfied. Having worked in the podiatry industry for 22 years, Carolina brings a wealth of knowledge pertaining to client service, insurance policies, and procedures.​ She steers the ship to make sure everything runs smoothly on the daily. Carolina is known for spicing up every outfit with her signature costume jewellery.