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Plantar fasciitis – what’s that then?

There are lots of reasons why patients come to see us with foot pain in our Sheffield physio clinic. Plantar fasciitis is a common one and one you may of heard of, if not experienced it yourself – around 10% of us will in our lifetime. You don’t have to be a runner  to experience this often extremely painful condition (also known as joggers heal).

Plantar fascia is the band of tissue that runs from your heel to your middle foot bones. It supports the arch of your foot and also acts as a shock absorber. Put simply the condition is caused by inflammation of your plantar fascia.

Like any ligament injury, recovery can be slow, but treatment will speed up your recovery. I don’t usually rush to recommend rest but on this occasion rest is definitely best. Along with gentle walking and carefully prescribed exercises from your physiotherapist – who’ll also chat to you about your footwear, heal and arch supports. Most people find relief and can prevent further boughts of Plantar fasciitis by regularly changing their training footwear. Most people with Plantar fasciitis also have tight Achilles tendon’s – one area is over compensating for the other in some way – and so our physiotherapists would recommend exercises to stretch the whole area.

KB’s easy and quick top tips for reducing pain in the Plantar Fascia are:

  1. footwear… be conscious of moving from a supportive winter shoe to a summer flip flop with no support!
  2. put a small bottle of water filled with water in the freezer and when it’s frozen roll on the bottom of your foot
  3. get a tennis ball and roll it up and down the calf muscle
  4. stop aggravating factors
  5. see a Physio before it gets worse!

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