What is Plantar Fasciitis?
The Plantar Fascia is a thick, fibrous band of connective tissue that helps to support the arch of your foot. It originates at the inside of your heel bone and extends forwards towards the balls of your feet. Plantar Fasciitis occurs when this band of connective tissue becomes irritated through repetitive overstretching. This process causes microtears to develop in the fascia, resulting in pain, inflammation and degeneration.
Signs & Symptoms
- a dull ache in the arch of your foot or underside of your heel
- intense pain for the first few steps after prolonged rest, ie getting out of bed in the mornings
- aggravated with prolonged walking or standing, but eased with sitting
- sore to touch
How is it caused?
Plantar Fasciitis is caused by the stress and strain on the fascia associated with repetitive overstretching. Risk factors that may predispose people to developing this injury include:
- excessive pronation (flat feet)
- a sudden increase in your training volume or intensity
- walking or running on hard surfaces
- poor flexibility in your ankle
- tight calf muscles
- poor running technique
- inappropriate footwear
How can we help?
- Soft Tissue Massage to relieve pain and improve flexibility in the calf muscles. This will be combined with a home-based Stretching Program.
- Acupuncture / Dry Needling to decrease pain and deactivate trigger points.
- Mobilisations / Manipulations (Adjustments) of the ankle and foot joints to help correct movement patterns with walking and running.
- Foot and Shoe Assessment to identify if your feet are contributing to your injury.
- Orthotics can be prescribed, if appropriate.
- Develop a Strengthening Program for your foot muscles and Plantar Fascia.
- Perform a Treadmill Running Analysis to identify if your running technique may be contributing to your Plantar Fasciitis. Gait Retraining may be required to help reduce your symptoms.
- Address any Training Errors. This will involve examining your current and future training schedule and advising you on an appropriately modified training program. We may recommend alternate forms of exercise to maintain your cardiovascular fitness during this period.
Do you wake up in the mornings and are hesitant to put your feet on the ground? Is your heel pain impacting your life so much that you now can’t even enjoy a simple walk down to the park? Research shows that physiotherapy is proven to be an effective way of treating Plantar Fasciitis.
See an expert at Spine & Sports Physiotherapy now to walk again free of pain or injury!!!