Plantar Fasciitis Explained
Plantar fasciitis is a condition that causes pain in the under surface of the foot. The pain can range from the heel to the balls of the feet. The pain is caused by inflammation of the plantar fascia. The plantar fascia is a soft tissue structure on the sole of the foot designed to be a shock absorber on the foot and also support the arches of the feet. It is an overuse condition that means that it slowly gets worse over a prolonged period of time, and there wasn’t one particular event or action that made it start hurting. One of the main symptoms is pain in the feet when having your first few steps in the morning, which then eases off during the day.
There are many causes of plantar fasciitis, all of these different causes apply too much pressure or stress on the plantar fascia to cause the injury. If you have an occupation which requires you to be on your feet for long hours through the day, or if you are very active, then you will be applying a lot of pressure on the plantar fascia. Other causes that put too much pressure on the fascia are old and worn down running trainers or work shoes, obesity or a change in training e.g. changing from running on grass to running on concrete. One of the other major causes of plantar fasciitis is tightness in the calf or Achilles tendon area. The tightness in these areas cause a biomechanical error that puts extra stress on the plantar fascia.
Visiting a Sports Therapist like me is highly recommended! Treatment options range from massage of the calf and Achilles area as well as the plantar fascia. A specialised rehabilitation programme can be created which would include stretching exercises and strengthening exercises for the calves. Taping techniques, ultrasound, gait analysis and advice can also be given to reduce the pain in the foot so you can go back to being completely pain free day to day and even reduce the chances of the condition occurring again.