The “Plantar fascia” is a fibrous band that runs along the bottom surface of the foot from the heel to the toes. It plays an important role in supporting the arch of the foot and maintaining proper walking mechanics. “Plantar fasciitis” occurs when small tears develop in the tissue leading to inflammation and pain.
Plantar fasciitis affects 10% of the population and is more common in women. You are at a higher risk of developing plantar fasciitis if you are overweight, stand for long periods of time, participate in endurance sports or often walk barefoot or in sandals.
You may notice some tenderness when you touch your heel, and you probably have tight calf and hamstring muscles as well.
Plantar fasciitis can be a frustrating condition, often lasting 18 months or more if left untreated. Fortunately, you may recover more quickly with proper treatment.
Your provider will apply a gentle force with their hands in order to restore motion to any “restricted” joints to improve flexibility, relieve pain, and help maintain healthy joints.
We may apply electrotherapy modalities or therapeutic ultrasound to comfortably decrease your pain, limit inflammation and ease muscle spasms.
Your provider will apply pressure with their hands, or with specialized tools, in order to release muscle tightness which will help improve your circulation, relieve pain, and restore flexibility.
Your chiropractor will target tight or weak muscles with specific therapeutic stretching and strengthening. Healthy, strong, and flexible muscles may help prevent re-injury.
Fallen arches and faulty mechanics are common problems that can perpetuate your condition. We will carefully evaluate your feet and consider the need for a change in shoe style, arch supports, or even custom orthotics.
Footwear: Choose shoes with good arch support, avoid going barefoot or wearing flip flops, avoid high-heeled shoes or boots, patients with fallen arches should consider adding arch supports or orthotics, repair or replace shoes with worn soles (running shoes should be replaced every 250 miles).
Hamstring Doorway Stretch
Perform 1 set of 3 times on each side, 2 times per day.
Lie flat on your back with your leg elevated and positioned in a doorway as shown. “Scoot” toward the doorframe until your hamstring is taut. Contract your hamstring by attempting to push your heel into the doorframe for seven seconds. Relax and repeat.
Plantar Fascia – Golf Ball
Perform 1 set of 1 minute, 2 times per day.
While sitting, roll your foot forward and backward over a golf ball on the floor. Use moderate pressure and “ease up” if you feel pain. You may substitute a frozen water bottle or another round object.
Standing Gastroc Stretch on Step
Perform 1 set of 10 reps, 2 times per day.
Stand with the balls of your feet on the edge of a step and use the handrail for stability. Slowly lower your heels until you feel a stretch in your calf and gradually increase this stretch over the period of one minute.
Flexor Digitorum Brevis Strengthening
Perform 3 sets of 10 reps, 1x per day.
While seated, place one end of an exercise band flat on the floor beneath your foot. Grasp the free end of the band and pull upward to create tension on your toes. Against the resistance, force your toes downward and then return to the start position.
Plantar Fascia Stretch
Perform 1 set of 1 rep, 30 times per day.
Sit in a figure-4 position and pull your big toe back for 10 seconds. Apply a firm massage pressure, moving from toe to heel as you stretch.