Plantar fasciitis is a common injury but firstly, what and where exactly is your plantar fascia?
It is a fibrous connective tissue which originates on the bottom of your heel bone, where it is thinner, and then extends into a thicker central portion.The thicker central portion extends into five bands as it passes all 5 metatarsal heads. The plantar fascia plays an important role in normal biomechanics of the foot, provides support for the arch and also acts as a shock absorber.
What is plantar fasciitis?
Plantar fasciitis refers to when this connective tissue becomes aggravated and you begin to experience pain around the heel or sole of the foot. It is commonly an overuse injury due to repetitive strains which lead to micro-tears of the plantar fascia. However, it can also be as a result of trauma or other multifactorial causes e.g. decreased mobility, flat feet/high arches, excessive weight-bearing activities, improper shoe fit, increased BMI and muscular tightness or weakness.
Common signs and symptoms associated with plantar fasciitis include local point tenderness along the heel, pain on first steps as you get out of bed, after a long period of rest or after training, limited ankle movement and pain on stretching of the toes upwards which further stretches the plantar fascia.
Why choose Fox Physiotherapy to help solve your plantar fasciitis?
At Fox Physiotherapy we treat people with plantar fasciitis every day. We use a number of approaches to alleviate pain and restore confident movement.
- Manual therapy: we use hands-on treatment techniques to alleviate heel/foot pain caused by plantar fasciitis
- Shockwave: we can use shockwave therapy to aid in the healing process and to settle the aggravated plantar fascia tissue.
- Dry needling: we sometimes use dry needling to the surrounding muscles and soft tissues, which can help to relieve pain and soreness.
- Exercise: We prescribe strength based exercises to strengthen the foot and surrounding area which can provide pain relief but also act as a preventative for future plantar fasciitis flare ups.
- Advise: we advise on daily activities, symptom management, return or continuation of hobbies and valued activities.
- Educate: we value spending time answering your questions and concerns. This is the value of having a 45 minute appointment over the standard 30 minutes. It is important for the person living with plantar fasciitis to fully understand the cause, the drivers of pain and how to best manage day to day.