Plantar fasciitis is marked by pain in the plantar region (underside) of the foot which often is worse when initiating walking, like first thing in the morning. It tends to improve during the day, but sometimes returns before the end of the day.
The plantar fascia is a actually a group of thick tendon like tissue with fibers that connect the heel to the toes (see picture) and is intimately attached to the skin. The thickest part is in the middle of the foot and often is the most painful part.
It is unclear exactly why plantar fasciitis happens. Here are a few things that are associated with it:
-Excessive training (particularly a sudden increase in the distance run)
-Faulty running shoes -Running on unyielding surfaces
-Flat feet (or pronated ankles)
Here are things you can do:
- Rest (try a different aerobic exercise for a while or switch it up occasionally)
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), like ibuprofen or aleve, are commonly used. Ask your doctor about these.
- Avoid wearing slippers or going barefoot if you have flat feet -Excessive heel impact from jumping and during walking should be avoided.
- Try heel inserts (heel inserts, etc) combined with stretching exercises (see below)
- Get fitted at a athletic apparel store with appropriate shoes. Athletic shoes, arch supporting shoe, etc.
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