Instructables
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Picture of The Metatarsal Arch Friendly Yoga Strap
During one of my first few yoga teacher training weekends, we discussed variations of the supine stretch (Supta Padangusthasana I), for the beginner student. One of those used a yoga strap over the foot if the student isn't flexible enough to reach the big toe. However, the ordinary strap had one issue, in that it could tend to flex the metatarsal arch in the opposite direction. This project outlines a simple modification for a yoga strap (adding a tennis ball) which prevents the arch from being flexed in the wrong direction.
 
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Step 1: Parts and Tools

Picture of Parts and Tools
For this project you'll need the following items and tools:
1) a lighter weight 6' yoga strap - if the strap is to heavy (thick) it may not pass through the holes in the tennis ball
2) a tennis ball
3) X-acto knife with #11 blade
4) fine tip / felt tip marker
5) one thin dime
6) needle nose pliers

Step 2: Marking and cutting the holes

Picture of Marking and cutting the holes
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Use the dime as a template for the holes in the tennis ball, tracing the outside diameter of the dime with the marker and placing the two holes on opposite sides of the tennis ball.

Once the holes are marked, carefully cut out the holes with the X-acto knife.

NOTE: the holes should not be much bigger than a dime in size, otherwise the tennis ball could lose its integrity, during the intended use

Step 3: Threading the strap

Picture of Threading the strap
To thread the strap through the holes I rolled the end of the strap and fed it through the first hole. If the rolled strap holds through the first hole, you may be able to feed it on through to the second hole. If not, take the needle nose pliers and grab the end of the strap and pull it through the second hole. The resulting modified yoga strap with tennis ball is shown below.
fireballxl5 (author) 1 year ago

One thing that I've noticed is, that over time, the tennis ball starts to crack around the two holds that were cut. I was thinking of doing some elaborate 3D prototype of a special ball to clamp on to the strap, but I think I found a ready-made solution. This ball;

http://www.bionicplay.com/products_ball.html

which is designed and sold as a pet toy, works ideally with a yoga strap. The ball is tough, durable and has some weight and support that the tennis ball didn't. I used the Medium sized ball (the website says it's for 15-35 lb dogs) and it works well with my Manduka yoga strap.

ball_bionic.jpg
fireballxl5 (author) 1 year ago
One slight change to this Instructable, to hold the ball in place on the strap, you can tie a loose knot in the strap and feed the knot into the hole in the tennis ball. The knot should be in the middle of the strap, so that the ball would then be held in place in the middle of the strap.