Plantar Fasciitis – Melina Mirzaei, Kinesiologist
What Is It?
Plantar fasciitis is a painful inflammation of the tissue in the arch of the foot. The plantar fascia is a band of tissue which supports the longitudinal arch of the foot and helps with shock absorption. This condition is commonly seen in runners and dancers, and is usually due to overuse or biomechanical factors.
Where Does It Hurt?
Generally, pain is felt on the bottom of the foot, near the inside of the heel. It is usually worst first thing in the morning, upon placing your foot on the ground, or anytime after prolonged inactivity. This is because the tissue is being forcibly and suddenly stretched after being in a slackened position for a long period of time. If the condition worsens, pain might be present with weight-bearing or during activity as well.
What Can You Do to Help?
There are a few things you can do to manage this condition. Rest from the aggravating activity is the first step. Beyond that, stretching the glutes, hamstrings, and especially the calves and sole of the foot is helpful. You can use a tennis ball to roll out the sole of the foot, and a foam roller to help knead out the knots in the muscles of the calf, hamstrings and glutes. Manual release of the tissue is also beneficial, so massage therapy and physiotherapy can be helpful to manage pain.
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Written by Melina Mirzaei