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The Touch Your Toes Challenge - #MakeYourMove

The Touching Your Toes challenge has been designed for people of all abilities; so if you’re almost there we have a programme for you but if you have that little bit further to go then we can help too.

Through stretching the muscles that do all of the work, you’ll build on your flexibility daily until you are inching yourself forward toward your toes.

Try touching your toes sitting on the ground if you find standing up too difficult.

Just make sure you are still doing the daily stretches and using the same techniques in the daily routine below.

The challenge in a nutshell

Your Why
Aim To improve flexibility in your legs and lower back until you can comfortably touch your toes
Benefits Touching your toes stretches your shoulders, back and hamstrings helping you become more flexible and can help prevent lower back pain
Goal How long it will take you to complete the challenge depends on your flexibility to start with. Give yourself up to 8 weeks if you are starting from scratch, and commit to doing the stretches daily. You’ll see better results sooner if you put in the time.
Next steps How low can you go? Once you are touching your tootsies with ease, keep stretching and practising until you are able to place the palms of your hands on the floor beside your feet.

Your daily routine

Step 1 – Glute Stretch

  • Lie on your back, with your feet on the floor about hip width apart
  • Lift your right leg so that your ankle is sitting on the thigh of the left leg
  • Make sure your right knee is sitting straight out to the side
  • Lift your left leg that is on the ground
  • Use your arms to lift the leg a little higher by pulling it up towards you.
  • Hold for the count of 30. You should be able to feel the stretch at the back of the thigh.
  • Swap legs and repeat for a count of 30.

Step 2 – Hamstring stretch

  • Lie on the floor with your left leg straight in front of you.
  • Bring your right leg up so it is as straight as you can make it in the air
  • Cup your hands behind your leg to keep it upright.
  • Hold for a count of 30. You will feel this stretch at the back of the whole leg
  • Swap your legs and repeat the stretch for a count of 30.

Step 3 – Calf Stretch

  • Standing up, place the palms of your hand on a wall and stand back a bit.
  • Put your right foot half metre in front of your left.
  • Push against the wall and bend your right leg forward
  • Keeping your left leg straight and feel the stretch in the back of your left leg.
  • Hold for a count of 30.
  • Swap your legs over and repeat the stretch for a count of 30.

Step 4 – Give it a try

  • Standing or sitting on the floor with your legs out in front of you, lift your chest so that you are holding your back straight.
  • Bending from your hip, lean forward dropping your arms. DO NOT BEND YOUR BACK.
  • Without forcing your back or body, tap your fingers against your body and see where they reach.
  • Hold for a count of 30 and you are done. If 30 seconds is too long at first, try to hold for 10 seconds and build your way to 30.
  • Repeat this each day and you will start to notice that you are reaching further down your body until you reach your toes.

Don’t forget

  • Track your results - motivation looks different for everyone, but nothing helps you to see progress like looking back at how much you have achieved.
  • If you would like to keep a manual diary, print this Touching Your Toes tracking sheet and keep notes.
  • Show us how you are getting on. Use #MakeYourMove on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook to join the conversation and see who else is touching their toes and improving their flexibility.

Need more convincing?

If you are thinking of starting the Touch Your Toes challenge, you won’t be alone. There are people all over the UK who are giving it ago or have completed the daily routine.