Plantar fasciitis is a common foot condition which is characterised by pain in the bottom of the heel and foot region. It is a result of irritation/inflammation of the plantar facia, a thick fibrous band which provides stability to the arches in your foot during tasks like walking and running.

Plantar fasciitis is often very sore first thing in the morning and also when getting up after sitting for a period of time. Often the pain will improve after a little bit of activity, however intense or long durations of walking/running will often cause an increase in pain.

Common contributing factors to onset of plantar fasciitis:

1.      Overuse: Large increases in repetitive tasks such as running, walking or hiking can lead to inflammation in the plantar fascia if it is too much too soon for the foot to tolerate.

2.      Changes in footwear: by altering how load is placed on the foot, which can lead to acute overload of the plantar fascia in some cases.

3.      Jobs involving large amounts of standing or walking.

4.      Age: More common as age increases

Treatment for plantar fasciitis:

Initially the focus is on reducing pain, which can be assisted through:

–          Icing the foot for pain relief

–          Rest from aggravating activities

–          Orthotics or taping of the foot to give extra arch support

–          Shockwave therapy

–          Implementing cross training for athletes to maintain fitness

Long term the focus is on improving foot and ankle strength and gradually increasing activity. Your physiotherapist will devise a specialised rehabilitation plan specific to your work or sport, this can include the following:

–          Strength exercises for the foot, calf and lower limb

–          Plyometric exercises

–          Specialised running program

–          Adjustments to running technique to reduce injury risk

–          Advice on appropriate supportive footwear

Our physiotherapists are highly skilled in plantar fasciitis treatment. If you or someone you know is struggling with foot pain, book an appointment today to start your individualised treatment program.

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