This stretch is a way to open out the front of the shin, which can be an area that can be quite tight as many of us hold our ankles at ninety degrees when we’re walking.  If you can’t kneel comfortably with the foot out flat in yoga, this might be a useful exercise to try.  

I sometimes refer to this as the “Little Lost child” stretch, as it reminds me of a small child tucking their foot under.


None necessary.

This stretch does need you to balance on one foot, so if you will find that challenging, then use a chair or the wall for support.


  1. Stand with your feet next to each other. Choose which side you’re going to stretch, use the opposite hand on something to help you balance.
  2. Lift the leg, place the tips of the toes on the ground.
  3. Allow the toes to tuck under, so the toe nails come to rest on the ground.
  4. Allow more leg weight to rest down, allowing the ankle to move over the rest of the foot and out to the side. You are aiming to feel the stretch from the side of the shin just below the knee, down over the outside edge of the ankle and maybe into the foot.
  5. Once you reach your maximum stretch, hold it for approximately 30 seconds.  This gives the body a chance to notice what’s happening, accept that it is not a threat to its safety and then soften into the stretch.
  6. Repeat with the other foot.

Standing feet next to each other.

Tucking the toes under

Tucking the toes under



As mentioned above, you need to feel stable in the balance on the leg that you’re not stretching.  The ankle is being taken into a position in which it might feel vulnerable, especially if you’ve twisted the ankle before.  This vulnerability might make it difficult to relax into it, so not having to worry about your balance takes one thing out of the equation.

Structurally the ankle is not quite as robust in the extreme stretch as it is in it’s normal position, so not losing your balance and twisting your ankle by falling is not the intention of this exercise. 


Here’s a short video of me doing the movement.

Thanks for reading this my lovely Interonauts.