Sunny summer greetings to you
Have you ever gotten out of bed in the morning only to collapse back onto the bed from a sudden, sharp, intense pain in the arch of your foot? Ouch!
Now let me ask you, if you HAVE had that experience, did you notice once you gingerly stepped out onto the floor, after a bit of time the pain went away, only to return later on in the day after you’ve been on your feet and are starting to tire out?
If so, you may very likely be suffering from a painful condition known as plantar fasciitis. This incredibly common, highly treatable condition occurs for a variety of reasons. There is no one cause of plantar fasciitis, and just like there is no one specific cause, there is no one size fits all specific treatment either. To truly get the results you deserve, a thorough examination and assessment by a PT, preferably one specializing in orthopedics (as ours are!).
But What Actually IS Plantar Fasciitis?
The plantar fascia is an incredibly strong, thick, sinewy piece of connective tissue that runs from the heel to the toes along the arch of the foot. It’s job is to hold all the muscles, ligaments, and bones of the feet together and to hold the arch of the foot in the most ideal position. It’s a workhorse for sure!
Now that we know what the plantar FASCIA is, it’s easy to infer what fasciitis is – it’s just a fancy way to say that the fascia we’ve been discussing is experiencing inflammation (itis!).
Common Causes of Plantar Fasciitis
While we did discuss above the fact that there are a multitude of reasons why people can develop plantar fasciitis, one of the most common reasons why the fascia in the foot becomes irritated and inflamed is due to having a flat foot.
What does that mean? Well, if you look at a healthy foot, there is a natural arch on the underside of the foot on the inside. Over time, and with things like repetitive movement on surfaces like concrete or asphalt, injury to the ankle or knee, or even ill-fitting shoes, the tensile strength of that fascia can begin to wear out a bit and the result is the all important arch of the foot beginning to flatten out. When this occurs, it puts pressure on the inside of the leg all the way up through the ankle, the knee, and even up into the hip joints.
The causes of a flat foot are numerous, and it’s really best to seek the help of a professional when working to understand the root cause of your arch troubles.
Dr. Kayla Goes Into More Detail
While it’s true that the MOST benefit will come from working with a trained professional to help you heal from plantar fasciitis, for those of you who just can’t make it in or aren’t able to get in as quickly as you’d like, we wanted to share a few tips on how to help work with the pain until you can get in to see one of our clinicians.
1. Self Myofascial or Trigger Point Release
This is a super simple exercise to try at home using either a tennis ball, an MFR ball (are you a patient of ours? You should already have one as a gift from us! If not, contact us to get one today – they’re invaluable!), or even a frozen water bottle.
To do this, simple place the round object of your choice under the arch of your foot and just move it around a bit until you find a spot that “hurts so good” – that’s the one! Once you find the spot, apply very gentle but steady pressure (you can lean in to it ever so slightly) and just stay there for about 1-2 minutes. Nothing crazy here; if in doubt, back off a bit.
Afterwards, you might like to “scrub” the fascia a bit by rolling the ball or water bottle back and forth across the whole of the arch. You should feel a noticeable difference almost immediately!
2. Calf Stretches
This one is best done leaning into a wall or a countertop for support; you don’t want to be balancing AND focusing on relaxing your muscles at the same time!
To do this stretch, find a place where you can move into a light lunge and focus on gently stretching the back heel. You’ll feel this stretch all the way along the back of the heel, the calf, and maybe even up into the back of the thigh a little bit.
Hold this stretch for 60-120 seconds, and then shake it out before repeating on the opposite side.
Aaaah, sweet relief!
3. Custom Orthotics
These are a true game changer for a lot of people who struggle with low or flat arches and plantar fasciitis. Ideally, we want your body to be stabilizing and supporting your fully system on its own, but sometimes, it needs a little help – this is where orthotics come in! They can provide that extra bit of support and stability at the arch of the foot giving that plantar fascia a chance to rest a bit and recalibrate.
We are proud to be offering world-class custom orthotics designed specifically for YOUR feet thanks to our new, state of the art equipment in the office utilizing 3D technology to scan your foot and really see the whole picture of what is going on.
We are offering a very special, limited sale price offer for those of you wanting to find out if the custom orthotics are right for you. Your scan is always free of charge, and your therapist will meet with you and discuss what they see and what your best options are to support you on your wellness journey.
To reserve your FREE orthotics scan and plantar fasciitis info visit, call us at 262.264.8701
For some people with ankle troubles, custom orthotics are a wonderful solution, and we are proud to now we offering just such a service for those who would benefit from it.
We’ve recently begun offering completely complimentary 3D postural scans in the clinic, and you can reach out to us any time to set up a free visit to have your feet scanned and find out if orthotics are the way to go in your unique situation.
To celebrate this new arrival in our clinic, we are offering an special introductory rate for all of our custom orthotics – flip-flops included! Summer is here, after all.